Engine shudders and sputters when trying to accelerate?

Tiny
TANAJEAN
  • MEMBER
  • 2015 FORD EXPEDITION
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 35,000 MILES
Started in November while driving down to Florida. Driving up a ramp onto the expressway, the car shuddered and paused. It felt like I had gone over something in the road, but then it did it again and the road was clear, smooth. Seemed like something was slipping.

Did it several times again during the drive. Always while accelerating and often when there was an incline, ie, on ramp or while merging or speeding up to pass.

Had it checked in Florida. Could not duplicate it and they had no idea so nothing was done.

Kept doing it over the next couple of months.

1/30/18- Driving up a ramp to merge on the expressway, the car shuddered, seem to lose power not from the engine cutting out or pausing more like something was slipping and pressing the accelerator did no good. Almost like when you are trying to accelerate on ice.

The check engine light started flashing and stayed flashing for a couple of minutes. Then it went off.

2/1/18- Driving on the expressway after picking up family at airport. Car started doing it again. Passengers asked me what was wrong with my car! My brother thought it might be a spark plug or gas supply issue.

2/6/18- Took to Ford dealer in Cincinnati. They could not find anything at first. He then drove it home attached to the computer. Said “test drive verify concern EEC test p0305 misfire number five. Replaced coil and plug.

2/10/18- Left for Florida. Car was worse than ever. The shuddering, pausing, slipping during acceleration lasted longer and occurred almost every time I tried to accelerate to pass. Check engine light flashed and stayed flashing for probably less than a minute.

2/11/18- Continued drive to Florida. Car seemed to be even worse. Kept it below seventy for rest of drive and tried not to accelerate quickly. Check engine light started flashing again during one of the episodes and stayed flashing longer, maybe two minutes, before stopping.

Have been told twice by both Ford dealerships that if they cannot pull an error code from the computer they cannot tell what's wrong. That was not at all helpful. I have a serious problem with this vehicle that I am now very sorry I bought! Help!
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Monday, February 12th, 2018 AT 8:39 AM

33 Replies

Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
Good afternoon.

It is a shame that everybody depends on a check engine light to tell them what is wrong. Old timers like myself and my colleagues are techs that diagnose these issues the good old fashion way.

From your description, it sounds like a torque converter shutter. There are clutches in the torque converter that slip over time. When they do, you get this shutter especially when under a load.

To confirm, try this. Go to a parts store and ask for an additive for torque converter shutter. It is an additive that you add to the transmission and will take effect in about thirty miles of driving.

If the issue goes away, it will confirm the failure. It is a temporary fix but the end result will be replacing the torque converter in the transmission.

Roy
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Monday, February 12th, 2018 AT 1:48 PM
Tiny
TANAJEAN
  • MEMBER
Thank you. I will do that today!
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Tuesday, February 13th, 2018 AT 7:01 AM
Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
Please let us know the results.

Roy
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Tuesday, February 13th, 2018 AT 7:19 AM
Tiny
RYSONN
  • MEMBER
  • 2007 FORD EXPEDITION
  • 5.4L
  • V8
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 148,000 MILES
The vehicle listed above we picked up to tow our camper has an intermittent sputter. Never while accelerating or driving. We first had it happen in line at a sporting event it started a rough idle and I had to put it in neutral and rev it. It has happen periodically in drive thru lines. It is always when at idle in a stop and go sort of situation. I say always but I mean that is the only time it happens and it happens intermittently. The vehicle has never thrown a code. Thoughts?
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KASEKENNY
  • EXPERT
I suspect this is the purge valve that is sticking as it would explain why it is intermittent. Basically the engine purges during idle times and if reving the engine smooths it out and until it stops would fit as well because you are basically allowing more air in to even out the air/fuel ratio.

I would remove the purge and see if there is carbon in build up in it. Basically what happens is if you top off the fuel tank, fill the tank with the engine running, or the charcoal canister gets fuel in it other ways, it breaks down the charcoal. This then causes the charcoal get get into the purge valve and cause it to stick. Once this happens, there are fuel vapor coming into the engine when the PCM doesn't expect it making it too rich or even too lean if it is stuck closed and the engine will run rough or stumble.

Let me know if you have questions. Thanks
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RYSONN
  • MEMBER
So, unfortunately, this was not the issue. I replaced the part and no change. To add more context. The truck never has a problem while driving. However, this weekend in pulling a 6,000 pound camper the truck went through an entire tank of gas in less than a 3 hour drive on the highway. Anyway, it never does it while driving, it never does it in park. It only does it (occasionally) when in drive in a stop and go sort of a situation and in reverse, say when attempting to back in the camper or something. The camper is not the cause of the problem as it was doing it before we even owned the camper.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KASEKENNY
  • EXPERT
Okay. Then we need to use a scan tool at this point to check the fuel trims from the PCM. This will tell us if we have a rich condition which is what this sounds like. Clearly with the added info of poor fuel economy will point us towards it just dumping too much fuel. This could be an o2 sensor issue or faulty injectors. The fact that it is not constant I suspect a sensor issue but we need to start with finding out if the engine is running rich.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RYSONN
  • MEMBER
Yes, we seemed to be going through gas quick. Granted I was pulling a camper but we were dropping quarter tanks every 20-30 minutes it seemed.

Is the scan tool something that the free ones at auto zone would pick up or do I need to take it to a shop?

Truck has not yet thrown a single code.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KASEKENNY
  • EXPERT
Unfortunately, we need to monitor the live data while driving it and the parts stores just use code readers. So they will not be able to provide this information.

If it is running rich it will not through a code until it sees something wrong. This is why it may just be an o2 sensor issue but again, we are guessing until we can get more data to go on.

I would not recommend spending the money on a tool unless you think you would use it in the future.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RYSONN
  • MEMBER
Okay, so what do I need to do in order to run the type of test you are talking about? Take it to a service shop and leave it with them? In doing research I keep coming across a cam phaser topic as well. Is that something I should be concerned about? That might be biting off more than we are willing to chew as the only purpose of this truck is to tow our camper as we have 3 other vehicles between my wife and I.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KASEKENNY
  • EXPERT
Yes. This is possible that you have a phaser issue but this would not only present itself when towing. Basically the phase moves back and forth adjusting the valve timing for best operation and fuel economy. However, when the phaser gets stuck, it will set a code. If it is out of position then the PCM would know it. There are times that there are issues with the other portions of this system but again, it doesn't know that you are towing something so why it only acts up then doesn't seem to fit what you are seeing.

If you do not have a scan tool then yes. We would need to have a shop monitor the o2 sensor data and see if it is running rich. If you are going to have someone look at this, you want to take your camper with it so they can try and duplicate the issue. Otherwise, they are just going to tell you it is fine and they didn't find anything. Does that make sense?
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RYSONN
  • MEMBER
It isn't exclusive to the camper. It has happened without the camper connected.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KASEKENNY
  • EXPERT
Oh. Okay. I misunderstood that. I think the point is we just want to make sure they understand how and when it does it so that they can try to duplicate it. Intermittent issues are the most frustrating issues and we don't want the shop to just give it back and say they couldn't find anything because they didn't drive it in the manner that it needs to be driven.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JD.BRYANT@YAHOO.COM
  • MEMBER
  • 2005 FORD EXPEDITION
The engine sputters while it's idling & driving? Is it something with the fuel?
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hello,

It sounds like one of the fuel injectors has gone bad here are two guides to help you see what's going on. Lets scan for codes first.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/checking-a-service-engine-soon-or-check-engine-light-on-or-flashing

and

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-replace-a-fuel-injector

Please run down these guides and report back

Cheers

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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
LAURIE HODGE
  • MEMBER
Thank you for this post I scanned the engine and it gave me a #3 cylinder misfire so I changed the injector problem gone. I love this site.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
AMHARKNESS
  • MEMBER
  • 2005 FORD EXPEDITION
  • V8
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 110,000 MILES
I have a 2005 Expedition with 110,000 miles on it. This past week it has started to shudder while accelerating between 1 and 1.5 RPMS. Usually it only occurs going uphill, but also on occasion while driving on level road. Once you increase RPMs and change gears the shuddering stops. Just yesterday the service engine light came on, but when I took it to the auto parts store to have the computer pull up the codes, no code came up. We have changed out the transmission fluid this morning. But there is still a shudder, although it changes gears smoothly again. And this evening, while driving home the shuddering started up again and the service engine light started blinking again. Are there any ideas on what could be the problem.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • EXPERT
Engine running rough or misfiring can be a spark plug this guide can tell for sure

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/engine-misfires-or-runs-rough

Please run down this guide and report back.

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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
AMHARKNESS
  • MEMBER
Thank You. Im going to print this out, and go down the list.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)
Tiny
TERRYS
  • MEMBER
  • 2005 FORD EXPEDITION
  • 101,000 MILES
I have a 2005 Ford Expedition, Can this be caused by the catalytic converter? It all started with a rattling when its in gear. Now it doesnt want to go when its in drive or reverse.
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Sunday, September 13th, 2020 AT 1:22 PM (Merged)

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