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Old 10-24-2007, 05:57   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Nov 2006
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Fuel Gauge

96 Taurus 3.0--
Fuel gauge reads empty....
Where should I start looking?
How can I trouble shoot the sending unit?
Is it in the tank with the pump?
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:35   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Illinois
Posts: 703
Re: Fuel Gauge

The fuel level sender is in the tank with the pump. The entire thing can be replaced as one unit. It is called the fuel pump module.

Fuel Gauge

CAUTION: Do not remove magnetic gauge pointers; the gauge cannot be recalibrated.

The magnetic fuel gauge consists of four primary coils, one of which is wound at a 90-degree angle to the other three.
The coils form a magnetic field which varies in direction according to the variable resistance of the fuel level sensor.
A primary magnet, to which a shaft and pointer are attached, rotates to align to this primary field, resulting in pointer position.
The bobbin/coil assembly is pressed into a metal housing which has two holes for dial mounting.
The fuel level sensor (part of the fuel pump module) changes resistance according to the level of fuel in the fuel tank, which varies the current flow through the gauge. The pointer position varies proportionately to the current flow.

The pointer of the magnetic gauge remains in relatively the same position when the ignition switch is turned to OFF.

There is no adjustment, calibration or maintenance required for the fuel gauge.

Low Fuel Level Warning

Instrument Cluster Gauge Amplifier

The conventional instrument cluster contains an instrument cluster gauge amplifier which provides a delay to the fuel gauge/temperature assembly to prevent the fuel gauge pointer from fluctuating as a result of excessive movement in the fuel tank.

The instrument cluster gauge amplifier has additional circuitry to turn on a LOW FUEL warning indicator when the fuel gauge/temperature assembly shows approximately 1/16 tank of fuel remaining.

The instrument cluster gauge amplifier is designed to prove out the LOW FUEL warning indicator. The instrument cluster gauge amplifier is a small printed circuit board which latches into a pocket on the back of the instrument cluster.
The electrical connections for ignition, ground, input from fuel sender, output to fuel gauge/temperature assembly and low fuel warning output (where equipped) are made through a spring-type connector on the instrument cluster gauge amplifier to the instrument cluster printed circuit on the instrument cluster.
There are no provisions for calibration or adjustment of the instrument cluster gauge amplifier.

Unfortunately to actually test the gauge it becomes quite involved and requires an ohm meter and knowledge of wire diagrams.

PM me if you want more info.
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:06   #3 (permalink)
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Posts: 15
Re: Fuel Gauge

I have the same problem in my '01 FFV, although it does read correctly occasionally. I looked at a Chilton's or Haines manual (can't remember which one) in the parts store a while back and it did have a procedure for ohming the sending unit. The resistance between certain leads should vary depending on how full the tank is. I don't recall the exact values. I've been meaning to test mine, but since I think you have to drop the tank to change the sending unit, I'm in no hurry.

Please update this post if you figure out how to test it or if you replace the sending unit.
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