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This weekend, a friend of mines 2000 Ford Focus ZX3 got caught in a street flood. The car wasn't running, it was parked in the street where it happened.

The water came up about three foot on the car, it flooded the inside up to the base of the seats.

The car actually started, but it was sputtering pretty bad... then, after a few hours, it would not start at all.

The car's computer is working, it had several fuel codes set (Secondard Fuel Circuit failure, and Fuel Pressure codes)..

I know this car has the returnless fuel system, and located the Fuel Pump Computer module under the rear seat of the car. I know this component got wet, as we poured water out of it. We're working on finding a replacement for this part, as I know that without it, it's not going to energize the fuel pump. Also, there are no fuel pump sounds coming from the tank when we turn the key.

I'm actually trying to find out what should I check next? I know there's an inertia switch, and I (think) I found it under the dash just in front of the door behind a plastic panel. It also got wet, but seemed to be a pretty sealed up unit. I shook it and could feel something move inside.

What else is there that sits low in this car that may have also been damaged?

Thanks in advance for any advice...
 

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3' deep & base of seats inside isn't adding up, would have been deeper inside from that estimate.

Almost everything is now suspect from the 3' comment, from checking the airbox/intake to engine oil & trans oil. (what "SHOULD" be sealed may not be, and trans. has a breather at the top that could ingest water)

Some electrical parts are likely to show MORE problems as it dries, the residue of crud is the problem more than the water.

That switch in the passenger kick panel IS the resettable inertia switch (behind the small hole for your finger to do a reset).

FPDM (fuel pump driver module) is the unit under the back seat, it DID do some communicating to set a "code" for a problem somewhere at or past it with the fuel pump circuit.

You can find a lot of help with DTC's in the "stickies" at the top of this page.

Luck
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks.. I didn't actually see it in the water, and just going by what he told me... I was surprised the seats were not more soaked as well. It might be a complete loss at this point, which is sad... but just trying to help him out a little.

I told him we need to do an oil change immediately, and the transmission breather is great advice, he'll have to get it changed too if we can even get it to run again.
 

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We found a Fuel Pump Driver module at the junk yard today - but that didn't do the trick.

I also checked the Fuel Pump Fuse in the Distribution box and it was good, and replaced the Fuel Pump Relay in the distribution box, and still no luck other than the car actually DID start and run for about three minutes (although VERY rough), then it died and would not start at all. Throughout all of this, I never heard the fuel pump energize.. so either it's incredibly quiet, or my hearing just isn't what it used to be...

Is it even possible that enough vapor pressure build up inside the tank would be enough to provide enough fuel pressure to let the engine run for a few minutes at idle?

So - we're left with a possible bad Fuel Pump, or maybe it's something more simple, like Fuel contamination. Is there a way for the tank to suck in water through the Vapor System if it were submerged but not running?

Thanks in advance for any feedback or ideas..
 

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If water high enough to create pressure it could be in tank. Tank is sealed but not bulletproof sealing. Emission canister behind tank can take on water under the correct circumstances. The sealing there only seals up to maybe 5 pounds of positive pressure. Rushing water could be higher than that.

The pump WAS running at least partially, no way EFI can run engine without it.

If you found inertia switch and wet, well, PCM and all the wiring to engine right in front of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Resolved - Summary

We ended up replacing the Fuel Pump Driver. In the process of diagnosing this, we had removed the inertia switch to inspect it, and in the process had tripped it and didn't realize our problem until we started doing more diagnostics.

There is a GREAT You Tube video that goes through the Ford Returnless Fuel System and how to diagnose problems.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rwve6lXriO4

This shows what all the wires do on the Driver Module, how the intertia switch works with the system etc.

Good news is that we have the car back up and running. We removed the fuel from the tank, but didn't notice any water in it (No Separation).

Thanks to everyone and their help here.
 

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Tx for the update!

Good to hear you solved it, and found the "oops" with the inertia switch without getting sidetracked/replacing something unnecessary.

Cheers
 

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That vid is indeed very handy, I've used it myself...........
 
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