2005 Ford Expedition intermittent hard start

Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
  • 2005 FORD EXPEDITION
  • 5.4L
  • V8
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 64,000 MILES
Problem for last 3 years, getting more often. Sometime it feels like a lack of fuel and then other times it feels like starter quits. Turn key off and then on and it stars quickly 98% of the time. One time I held key to start for 30 seconds and not a pop. Turn key off then on and it starts normal. I was told the fuel pump driver module might be the problem. I replaced the module and have the same problem. Fuel pump never failed after start. I understand the module gets a rpm signal to keep pump running after the initial 2 second run. Where does that rpm signal come from?
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Thursday, October 9th, 2014 AT 1:52 PM

12 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
The signal is from the crank sensor. When this happens, does the starter turn the engine or is there no sound at all?
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Thursday, October 9th, 2014 AT 5:18 PM
Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
Starter always turns, engine almost starts but then only starter turning without any engine firing. If I stop cranking, go to off and try again, it starts immediately. Again, I will tell you I installed a new fuse panel a few months ago, and now a new fuel pump driver module and still have the same problem. I sure hope you can help me, I love the car. Its the best car I have ever had. Thank you for your reply. William Aseere
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Friday, October 10th, 2014 AT 3:32 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Base on that, it sounds like you are not getting enough fuel pressure to start the first try. Try this and let me know what happens.

Cycle the key from off to on 3 times. Each time, let the key in the run position for a couple seconds (don't engage the starter). On the 3rd time see if it starts.

Let me know what you find.
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Saturday, October 11th, 2014 AT 9:32 PM
Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
When following your instructions the engine starting problem is less than it was, but it still does it every 6 or 7 tries. I'm expecting it not to start at all someday. I can only hope it does it while I'm close to home. Any othe hunches?
William
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Friday, October 17th, 2014 AT 1:57 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:

This is such a tough one since on only happens at times. To me, it sounds fuel related, but that doesn't mean it isn't an electrical issue. In your original post, you asked where the module gets it's signal. The signal is via the crank sensor through the PCM. Yes, that could be an issue, but even though there is no RPM signal, the fuel pump should still prime and start the engine for at least a couple seconds.
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Friday, October 17th, 2014 AT 5:13 PM
Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
Thank you for your opinion. I have a couple questions: When you shut the engine off after operation, does the fuel line including the fuel pump itself have any sort of check valve preventing fuel from draining back into the tank? Was the fuel system designed to preserve trapped fuel in the line for the next start? It feels to me that some sort of a leaky check valve or even a seal could let the fuel drain back and therefore create the exact problem I have starting. It just feels like that situation, not that I think that is the problem.
Thanks again, William
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Friday, October 17th, 2014 AT 6:04 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Yes, there are check valves that should maintain a minimum amount of pressure to the system. What you have described is called fuel pressure drop off. Basically, when the engine is turned off, the pressure quickly drops to 0. As a result, the next time you try to start it, the fuel pump takes a little longer to build the proper pressure. That is why I had you try cycling the key three times. In three times, the pump should have primed the system to start normally.

Would you like direction or a video to check fuel pump pressure, the pressure regulator, and fuel pressure drop off?
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Friday, October 17th, 2014 AT 6:55 PM
Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
Yes, thank you. A video would be great. Your instructions are also great and logical. William
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Saturday, October 18th, 2014 AT 7:42 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Here is a video:

http://www.2carpros.com/articles/fuel-pump-pressure-and-regulator-test-video-all-cars

Here are written directions:

http://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-check-fuel-system-pressure-and-regulator

You will need a fuel pressure gauge, but most parts stores will lend one to you. If I recall, the video was made using a Ford vehicle.

Let me know what you find. When you check, the pressure should build quickly. However, when you turn the key off, it should maintain for some time and not just drop to 0.
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Saturday, October 18th, 2014 AT 4:26 PM
Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
Thank you much. I ordered a fuel pressure kit and after following your instructions I will get back to you. You guys are great!
William
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Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014 AT 12:18 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
I'll look for your reply. Did you see if a parts store would lend you the fuel pressure gauge?
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Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014 AT 5:24 PM
Tiny
EZZRA1933
  • MEMBER
New find! This morning I did the 3 try sequence and the starter was cranking and engine sounded like it was being starved for fuel, but all of a sudden the starter dropped out and back in while holding key in start position (as if a relay intermittently was opening). The starter then continued to crank the engine without a pop. I then went to off position then start position and engine started immediately. Whew. William
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Thursday, October 30th, 2014 AT 4:56 PM

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