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99 Ford Escort slow acceleration

Discussion in 'Ford Escort' started by 5150Jim, May 23, 2018.

  1. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    Okay, back again with a different Escort & different problem.

    This time it's my 1999 Ford Escort 2.0L SFI SOHC and it has slow acceleration. After I get on the freeway it seems to run good. It down shifts & has acceleration but not off the line.

    I changed the plugs & wires. I also changed the fuel filter. I also checked the ignition coil (swapped it for the other one in the ZX2) but nothing helps.

    Two people have said that the timing belt may have jumped a tooth. I think it would run much worse if it did that but I really don't want to jack it up, pull the tire & harmonic balancer to eyeball the timing. Is there a way to check it without pulling that off? Or am I barking up the wrong tree.
    TNX, Jim
  2. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    Not that familiar with Escort engines.

    If it has spark plug wires versus coil on plug design, you can check it with a timing light. What you are looking for would be retarded ignition at idle. Likely the crank is NOT marked for TDC. If it is then that is a bonus.

    With coils & injectors disconnected & #1 spark plug removed, spin crank until the piston gets to TDC. Mark crankshaft balancer to some reference and note crankshaft rotation. Re-connect everything including a timing light. Fire up engine. The timing light should light up at some point before the mark on the balancer gets to the reference point. The reference point is TDC and most spark will occur before TDC.

    If the mark occurs after TDC the timing belt has slipped. You didn't state the mileage. I believe belt replacement is due every 100,000 miles. If it is due for replacement, forget all of the above and just replace the belt, water pump and tensioner pulley.

    Another Q - Is the check engine light on?

    >>>>>>>>>>Action
  3. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    No ck engine light.

    I replaced the engine in 2009 & had the head rebuilt in November 2013. I replaced the timing belt in 09 but I didn't put the mileage in my records. I keep much better records for my motorcycles than I do for the cars… I don't know why… But I'm going back & trying to add more info on the Escorts. If I did replace the timing belt in 09 that's more than 40k miles ago…

    Mileage right now is 213k miles & I will check the timing like you said.

    TNX again...
  4. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    Okay... Hurt my back & haven't been out to the cars for a couple of days but I did go shoot some pix today & I think I found the problem with your help. I pulled the #1 plug & found TDC. So here are the pix & it looks like it has jumped a tooth.
    TNX, Jim
    Snapchat-37690846.jpg IMG_20180526_152521.jpg
  5. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    That would do it!

    That belt looks a little beyond the end of service lift as well. Since it was replaced in 2009 and it is nine years later, time for a new belt me thinks. Water pump as well.

    >>>>>Action
  6. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    That is just the serpentine belt for the AC P/S Alternator & it was replaced 9/16... And I replaced the engine in 09 & also had the head rebuilt in 2013 & replaced the timing belt then but that's not why I'm back... I would love to tell you that moving the timing belt made it run better but it's still NOT correct... Not sure what's going on now because I checked it 3 times today (pulling the #1 plug & all) and it still doesn't have any acceleration.
  7. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    To recap you can go fast you just can not accelerate fast, correct?
    When the accelerator is put to the floor from standing stop or slowly rolling start what happens?

    Is throttle body opening up?
    Vacuum reading at idle (will give a good indication)?

    >>>>>>Action
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  8. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    Yes, after about 20 MPH it goes… And I tested the idle air control module (I have a short video) and it works but the only different that I see between my2000 ZX2 & the 1999 SE is the voltage is lower at the start on the ZX2… ZX2 voltage is .813 v & the SE starts at 1.023 v but they both go up to 4.5v. So the throttle body is opening.

    Vacuum? I didn't think about testing for that…

    Okay… I'll report back.
  9. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    Just thought I would check in with you because my father-in-law (who is a mechanic but is out of town right now) said to check the Engine Control Module. I swapped the ECMs from 1 Escort to the other & the problem didn't follow. I work part-time so only play with the cars on Fri Sat & Sun. But something really weird happened this morning. The car had no power at all after driving it for about 5 min & wouldn't move. I had to rev it up a few times & then put it back in gear & then it ran like it has been. Not much power until you get past 20 MPH. I hope to check the vacuum today but I need to replace the back tire on my Goldwing today & that is always fun. I have been trying not to drive the 99 Escort & just ride my bike every day. And my wife drives the 2000. So I'll report back again.

    TNX, Jim
  10. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    The electronic control system is sensitive to voltages and connections. When swapping electronic parts make sure there is a good ground and assemblies are mounted correctly and securely.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>Action
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  11. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    Hi again... Still playing with the 99 Escort & my father-in-law is back in the area so I can get info & tools from him. Now someone said to check the fuel pressure. Well they were right because I borrowed a gauge from my father-in-law & it only reads 19 PSI!!! But on the good side, I have no leak in the system. I left the gauge on for over an hour & it only dropped 1 psi. But one more nice thing happened over the weekend & that is we got another 1999 Ford Escort. So now I have a running car I can take parts off of to test the other car. So it looks like one of 2 things can be the problem. It’s either the Fuel Injection Pressure Sensor or the fuel pump. I’m going to swap the Fuel Injection Pressure Sensor tomorrow so I’ll let you know what I find.

    TNX, Jim
  12. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    There should be a fuel pressure regulator which may be the same part that you used a different name.

    That regulator will be on the fuel rail and will have a vacuum line to it. Should look similar to this. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Action 3.jpg
  13. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    acontentinfo_autozonepro_com_znetcs_product_info_en_US_wl2_SU13804_image_3__.jpg
    Ford Escort Duralast Fuel Injection Pressure Sensor,

    Part Number: SU13804 Vehicle Specific Duralast Fuel Injection Pressure Sensor

    Price: $122.99

    Ouch... Here it is but like I said, both 99s have the same engine so I'll pull & swap tomorrow.
  14. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    OK post your results.

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  15. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    I swapped the fuel injection pressure sensor from the 99 that runs correct & put it in the 99 that has slow acceleration with no change in the acceleration. It’s still slow. I also checked to make sure I have vacuum to operate the sensor & I do.

    So it looks like it may be the fuel pump which is in the gas tank but I can replace it from under the back seat. So I don’t have to drop the tank.

    I’ll check back after I come up with $200 to replace the pump.
  16. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    For $200 you will get the strainer, wiring, float, tubing and pump all assembled and ready to install.

    There is a way to do this on the cheap. Replace just the pump. For less than 10 bucks
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Electric-F...=2&_nkw=1999+Escort+fuel+pump&_from=R40&rt=nc
    Add a new strainer for under five bucks
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/APEX-Fuel-...=1&_nkw=1999+Escort+fuel+pump&_from=R40&rt=nc

    Add your labor to swap over the new pump and strainer. Then get your ride back on the road. Just a thought.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Action
  17. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    After going back & thinking about it… The pump is working (19 PSI) so I may only need to replace the Fuel Pump Strainer. If it’s plugged, maybe that’s why there is no volume or increase in flow. And I was testing the other 99 Escort & it only has 25 PSI & only goes up to about 35 PSI when I rev it up. Also when I replaced the fuel filter there was dark gas coming out of the filter & I might be able to just replace the strainer… I can pull the back seat & if replacing the strainer doesn't work, I can buy the pump because I’ll already have the seat out.

    TNX again for your input...
  18. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    19PSI is too low to operate the injectors.

    The other Escrow is showing acceptable numbers. The spec would be high 20 to low 30 PSI at curb idle speeds. Max pressure would be something that approaches 50 to 60.

    I assume you are testing down stream from the fuel filter. Not sure how many miles on the engine, when was the last time the fuel filter was replaced?


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  19. 5150Jim

    5150Jim Member

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    The engine was swapped out for another used one about 10 yrs ago and has about 200k miles on it. I replaced fuel filter right after I put new spark plugs & wires when it started running poorly. Also the injector rail has a Schrader valve on it & that’s where the pressure gauge goes for testing.
    TNX, Jim
  20. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    " I replaced fuel filter right after I put new spark plugs & wires when it started running poorly."

    When was that?

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