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Registered
1998 Forester
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We have a 1998 forester and it has been a great car thus far. About 8 months ago it started to randomly die as we were driving down the street.

-When the car is cold I can usually drive for 10-15 minutes before it dies
-When it is warm, I often can't even back out of a parking space.
-Idle randomly becomes erratic jumping all over the place, up, down, and then dead
-When it dies it is as if it no longer is getting fuel or air
-The less gas in the tank the more often it dies, at about 1/2 tank it dies every 2-3 blocks at best, on a full tank I may get a full mile before it dies
-If I unplug the mass air flow sensor the problem continues to persist, no change
-I have added fuel system cleaner, but no improvement
-Stop and go traffic is the worst

This problem is really annoying and preventing us from using or selling our car. We have taken it to the shop and they haven't been able to figure out the problem, yet they do still charge us for 'troubleshooting'... any help from you would greatly serve my family!
 

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2007 Mitsubishi Pajero 5spd Automatic
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3,594 Posts
I don't know what they tried but I hope someone else here knows more about your problem.
I wonder if the A/F sensor can make these problems....
You got no cel at all??
 

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1998 Forester
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
i thought that once a fuel pump starts to die it dies quick and doesn't look back. I have been driving around with these problems/symptoms since early last summer! Addiotionally, since these problems started i have had the car serviced for its 120K... i believe they changed out the fuel filter as a part of this servicing - maybe not though?
 

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1998 Forester
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I don't know what they tried but I hope someone else here knows more about your problem.
I wonder if the A/F sensor can make these problems....
You got no cel at all??
I get acceleration, in fact i drive this car 6 miles to work every day, just on the way there it always dies 2-3 times and on the way home it'll die 10-15 times. Often I must appear to other drivers like a new stick-shift driver :icon_frown:
 

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Premium Member
2008 Forester X Premium 5MT
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8,073 Posts
Typically fuel pumps do die all in one shot, however a few fuel pumps refuse to give up the ghost all at once and die a slow painful death.


....
-The less gas in the tank the more often it dies, at about 1/2 tank it dies every 2-3 blocks at best, on a full tank I may get a full mile before it dies
.......
This comment to me points to a fuel issue, one directly related to the fuel level in the tank.
High fuel level = less work for the pump = less stalling
Low fuel level = more work for the pump = more stalling

There is no need to replace the entire fuel pump/level assembly which can be rather pricey. With moderate tools and skills one can replace just the pump unit for less then $100.
The least expensive way to get the pump it self is ebay through an auction like this one.

Standard disclosure: May or may not be the right unit, you must verify compatibility.
98 99 00 01 02 04 SUBARU FORESTER 2.5 FUEL PUMP NIB : eBay Motors (item 260488058076 end time Mar-06-10 13:53:03 PST)

This may or may not be the issue but in my experience it would be my starting point as it has a high probability of being the cause. Generally most fuel pumps only last around 100K-150K, any thing beyond that is borrowed time in my eyes.
 

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Premium Member
2008 2008 2.5i-2018 XT
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13,235 Posts
I'll bet if you got on an interstate and tried to drive say 75 or so it would die quickly.
I tend to say some type of a clog which leads me to fuel filter vs pump. I would almost bet on it.
 

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04 STi and Fxt
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169 Posts
I have had this problem with my 04 STi. I am 100% willing to bet its a loose engine ground. Browse through your engine bay, find every ground lug, and tighten them. In my case, the ground on the intake manifold, above the fuel rails on the driver side was loose. The bolt was clamped finger tight, and wasnt providing the engine/injectors with a proper ground. My car would randomly die while driving too.

I would check these as soon as possible. In my case, I thought"fuel pump". I ordered a new pump, installed it, and the problem was still present. So, I then figured " Front o2 Sensor". Bought a new one, problem still present. I decided to start the car and look for a vacuum leak. I proceeded to pull a vacuum line off of the T that goes to the Bypass valve/ Blow off valve. Typically the running car will change its tune a bit when a vacuum line is disconnected. Nothing happened. Upon reconnecting the line, I happened to lean on my driver side intercooler piping. The car came alive and sounded like it used to. When I removed the weight from the ic piping, the engine went back to running like crap. Turns out, when I installed my APS front mount, I didnt torque the bolt that connects the piping to the intake manifold(VIA THE GROUND TERMINAL POINT) to proper specs. It walked itself out a tiny pit over time(COULDNT VISUALLY TELL IT WAS LOOSE) enough to kill the motor from a bad ground.


I highly advise you to do this, as it is free, and may really be your problem.

If this fails, check your front o2 sensor, fuel filter, fuel pump, tighten battery terminals, and maybe even look into a throttle body sticking issue. Basically anything that can choke out the car.



*Now that I remember, when your car loses power/dies do your interior/ exterior lights go dim or shut off? If this is a power related issue, the electronics may shut off also. If it's a fuel pump or filter, the electronics will work like usual.



Let us know!
 

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Registered
1998 Forester
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
thanks for the tips and advice, i got a few things to go look at and will report back once i know more!
 

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Registered
2000 2 Outbacks 1Man , 1 Auto
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312 Posts
Given the age of the car I would suspect possible intermittent faults with the Crankshaft position sensor and the coolant temperature sensor. For what they cost I would replace both. Other possibilities could be the coil pack. Also clean all the engine earths back to bare metal . The fact you can run the car for 15 minutes before encountering problems , for me says the fuel pump and filter are ok.
 

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1998 Forester
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
:woohoo:

turned out to be the MAF, tried cleaning it, but it was just toasted... replaced and now we are rolling issue free again!
 

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Registered
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374 Posts
I can attest to all of this

I have had this problem with my 04 STi. I am 100% willing to bet its a loose engine ground. Browse through your engine bay, find every ground lug, and tighten them. In my case, the ground on the intake manifold, above the fuel rails on the driver side was loose. The bolt was clamped finger tight, and wasnt providing the engine/injectors with a proper ground. My car would randomly die while driving too.

I would check these as soon as possible. In my case, I thought"fuel pump". I ordered a new pump, installed it, and the problem was still present. So, I then figured " Front o2 Sensor". Bought a new one, problem still present. I decided to start the car and look for a vacuum leak. I proceeded to pull a vacuum line off of the T that goes to the Bypass valve/ Blow off valve. Typically the running car will change its tune a bit when a vacuum line is disconnected. Nothing happened. Upon reconnecting the line, I happened to lean on my driver side intercooler piping. The car came alive and sounded like it used to. When I removed the weight from the ic piping, the engine went back to running like crap. Turns out, when I installed my APS front mount, I didnt torque the bolt that connects the piping to the intake manifold(VIA THE GROUND TERMINAL POINT) to proper specs. It walked itself out a tiny pit over time(COULDNT VISUALLY TELL IT WAS LOOSE) enough to kill the motor from a bad ground.


I highly advise you to do this, as it is free, and may really be your problem.

If this fails, check your front o2 sensor, fuel filter, fuel pump, tighten battery terminals, and maybe even look into a throttle body sticking issue. Basically anything that can choke out the car.



*Now that I remember, when your car loses power/dies do your interior/ exterior lights go dim or shut off? If this is a power related issue, the electronics may shut off also. If it's a fuel pump or filter, the electronics will work like usual.



Let us know!
 

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Registered
98 L
Joined
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11 Posts
I'll bet if you got on an interstate and tried to drive say 75 or so it would die quickly.
I tend to say some type of a clog which leads me to fuel filter vs pump. I would almost bet on it.
Please, help me understand "MAF"? I need to check my problem too.
Thanks
 
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