When hot, car runs rough... stalls. Poor gas milage - Focus Fanatics
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:32 PM   #1
bssop
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When hot, car runs rough... stalls. Poor gas milage

Here is my issue.

2003 ZTS 177,000 miles :)


Recent replaced parts:

New plugs/wires
Fuel Filter
IAC
New downstream O2 sensor * (Today)
Some non related (windows/ window regulators/ switch) but my cash flow is low as a result.

Needs a new timing belt.


So... I've had this issue for years, only during hot weather months but I have to have it fix since I drive long distance for work along with college now. But, it wasn't doing this during the hottest months of the year, unlike it normally does.

Car runs fine for about 25 miles, then a lose of power for the next 20 miles... If you try to pass on the interstate, good luck! Then at 50 miles comes the fun part... When going up a hill, it will try to down shift and when it does, it will SLAM... HARD!!! Next hill, it wont shift, 3 miles later... stalls and fails to shift (in lower gears). Wait 5 minutes, I can start it and go a couple miles and make my destination.

When the temperature cools (along with the car), It will run but the hard down shifting happens.


Codes????

Yep... P0420

So I did the cheep thing first and replaced the O2 and the code hasn't came back (after 80 miles) BUT the car ran like crap for 30 miles and the same on the way home. Feels like it "jolts" when you have the cruise on and get above 60 mph. Still shifts hard.

Oh and my gas milage stinks... I get 200 miles on a tank!!! Mostly Highway.


So... I was leaning bad cat but the hard shifting is throwing me off. Is there anything else I should look at first?


Thanks!



Last edited by bssop; 09-19-2013 at 10:43 PM. Reason: adding more "recent" parts
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:34 PM   #2
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how old is the fuel filter?
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:41 PM   #3
bssop
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Newish (less then 5,000 miles)... forgot to add that.

(Will edit it now)

Last edited by bssop; 09-19-2013 at 10:43 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:55 PM   #4
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Well based on the assumed MPG you're getting, which I'm figuring at 20MPG, you should be throwing another P0420 shortly.

The threshold is ~25%. If I assume you should be averaging 28MPG; take 20/28 = ~28% rich.

And if this is with a new O2 sensor that isn't currently throwing a code, and may not ever. I have to ask what brand you went with?


The other input for fueling would be the Mass Air Flow Sensor. Getting dirty gradually could throw the fueling off yet the computer wouldn't pop a code because it's reading what it thinks is correct.
So I'd say also clean the MAFS with some maf cleaner spray.

Then it's maintenance stuffs. Plugs, wires, PCV, oil change, check tire pressure, trans flush/filter, etc.
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Old 09-20-2013, 12:10 AM   #5
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It was a Bosch.
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Old 09-20-2013, 06:15 AM   #6
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Swap it with NTK.
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Old 09-20-2013, 10:42 AM   #7
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New problem!!


Shortly after starting this morning. Drove a tenth of a mile to the first stop sign.

Hard to break (goes to floor)

RPM's are at 3000

Did this once a week ago, same situation, cold start... early stop.
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Old 09-20-2013, 10:05 PM   #8
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Moved to "General Technical Chat".
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Old 09-20-2013, 10:11 PM   #9
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Clogged cat? PCV hose collapsing? I would start buy checking that PCV hose it plugs into the back of the air intake. It will collapse at the bend coming off the intake.
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Old 09-22-2013, 11:05 AM   #10
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PVC hose looks good... I always check it first since it was one of the very first issues I had to fix with my car :)


Still no CEL since the O2 sensor change, car still runs rough. Doing routine fluid changes (oil and trans) today.
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