July 27, 2010 04:43PM
Yesterday I stalled an hour into my trip from Vegas back to LA. 15 South,
110+ degree heat. no AC.
Sputters with major intermittent missing going upgrade, 65 - 70 mph. I get to shoulder. finally stalls.
smell gas strongly but none visible anywhere.
wait one hour. drive off, fine.
stalls again same way after 50 mi
this time i park next to a tree!! but still wayyy hotttt in the shade. thank heavens i had fruit, juice, and water on ice and fully charged mobile.
50 N of Barstow.
get towed to Barstow Fuel
where i ironically got oil and water at midnight Saturday on the way out to NV.
they debated whether my car has one for two fuel pumps and advise waiting til sundown if i chose to keep going and to fill the tank to help cool the pump.
I did and made it the rest of the way no problem. what should have been a four hour trip turned into nine though.
First, I think I only have one FP in my 87 325ic
and Second, why does it get paralyzed in such heat.
and third, should I replace it?
not cheap part/s

open | download - vegas, baby.jpg (15.4 KB)
August 08, 2010 12:10AM
1 if your car was built after Sep 87 then you have the single pump
2 why do you think it's the fuel pump? If you have a fuel leak then maybe the pump is working overtime to maintain pressure, which is why it's dieing. In-tank pumps need to be submerged so that the fuel keeps them cool, hence why the guys told you to fill up for the rest of your trip. But the smell of fuel is worrying, get someone who knows what they're doing to check your fuel system for leaks, before you waste money on a fuel pump.
3 once you've narrowed down the cause...ummmm yes you should replace it. You could always just keep a spare pump on hand for when it finally dies. But I'm sure it'll die at the worst possible time, so if it was me I'd just replace it straight away.

August 08, 2010 04:21AM
Fuel smell... Had that on mine after a warm start ever since I replaced the fuel pump. Never found the cause. Was thinking of leakage at the pump side connection but the access panel should seal enough to keep that out and the smell was definitely in the interior.

Are you sure it is a fuel problem? Does the car drive OK under hard acceleration? Could be an intake leak as well though that wouldn't explain why you can't restart for an hour.
Do you hear the fuel pump buzzing? If yes, do you get fuel under the hood?
August 11, 2010 11:53PM
One thing that is very difficult to diagnose is a failing ignition coil. When they get hot, the insulation breaks down and no longer will spark. Consequently, unburned fuel going out the back end. When cooled off, it works again. The failure will get more often as it get further along. It is a cheap fix.

Bob in Everett
August 12, 2010 07:14PM
thanks guys. have been driving fine since then. no problems. drives fine under hard acel, but i try not to do that much.
I think i have one pump and i have not replaced it. it never buzzed when i stalled and i could not access the panel, no tools. but i think i still would have heard it. i do have a bad spark plug, i know from before. it fouls/smells of heavy gas on start up then goes away. this happens every few months or so and then i clean them all or replace and no more smell. i will try that next. or maybe the ignition coil, that could be it and i'll look into it.

thanks again.
August 20, 2010 05:28PM
My 87 BMW would miss intermittantly between Las Vegas and Orange County particularly on hills. Ended up being ignition-new plug wires, rotor and cap made the problem go away. No issues on three trips since then including one really hot one.

Doug S
August 22, 2010 12:46AM
Doug S, i think you are my hero!

i'm waiting to get money to tune her up, new wires, etc.

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