Mechanics

PLYMOUTH RELIANT GAS PROBLEM

1988 Plymouth Reliant • 45,000 miles

I'm owner of car shown above with 2.2 American motor and have a mechanic who cut his mechanical teeth on K-cars, doing literally hundreds of them, but is totally stumped. Got car last summer and it was fine til January or so. Replaced master cylinder to solve a problem with brakes. Car started running rough and losing power on hills, gradually burning gas so poorly that exhaust was literally black and gas had gotten into the oil. Bruce has worked on it a week cleaning out fuel injection box, replacing injection/idler valve(motor?), Rechanging oil and doing everything else he could think of. Power is better but idle still bad and after driving 50 miles exhaust is just as black as before.
I've had these vehicles one after another since Valient and this one has what seems a minor problem but I've never heard of it so I can't help wondering if it's related. When the gas gauge show a quarter tank it staazrts acting as if it's running out of gas. I'e just been keeping it fuller but it will only hold 10 gallons as opposed to the 12 the others have taken.
Could this be related?
Any help you can give me much appreciated. I know this is a long request and you're talking to an owner who admittedly knows little about mechanics. Thanks in advance,
Mary Griff (megno54@windstream. Net
PS My mechanic not computer savey so he can't contact you
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Mary Griff
March 19, 2013.



I can offer a few suggestions. First of all, the MAP sensor has the biggest say in how much fuel enters the engine. That used to be a pretty high-failure item but it will set a diagnostic fault code and turn on the Check Engine light when it fails. Instead, it may just be reading incorrectly. There was a recall or service bulletin for that. You'll see that sensor is on the right strut tower, quite a ways away from the throttle body and it uses a long length of vacuum hose. Per the bulletin, you were supposed to cut that hose within a few inches of each end, install plastic tee fittings, then connect the two extra ends together with another hose. That just put two hoses in parallel next to each other but the idea was air could circulate and dry out condensed fuel vapors.

For the fuel problem you might consider the pickup screen in the gas tank is collapsing and blocking fuel flow. That typically happens after driving 10 - 15 miles and can get bad enough for the engine to stall completely. It will expand again after a few minutes and let fuel flow for a few miles before acting up again.

For both problems the fuel pressure should be checked. If the fuel pressure regulator is leaking it will dump raw fuel into the engine.

Caradiodoc
Mar 20, 2013.