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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all, got a 97 merc 4.6 with 90k miles that ive had for a number of years. I out the car in storage when i left the state 3 years ago and came back last year to retrieve it to find a no start issue. I did regular maintenance (plugs wires oil change air filter fuel filter) i diagnosed a bad fuel pump and swapped it out, siphoned out the gas at the same time. Started right up first crank. Over the next few months ive had a gas smell in the car at all times, and some intermittent cranking issues. It sputters turning over and sometimes wont start as the battery dies. No check light. Until last night if i had my truck hooked up with cables it would start up pretty much no problem, the last week it was doing pretty good starting on its own with no jump but last night i went to crank and even when i had it hooked up it just keep cranking and sputtering with no start/would start and stall immediately after. The alternator and starter are good and were replaced just before storage and certainly has more signs of a fuel/air issue than electrical. Was possibly thinking clogged filter/injectors, bad seal on the fuel pump or sticky iac, possibly bad regulator. Its at a gas station now and im going back in a few hours to see what i can figure out. Any insight would be appreciated.
 

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Get your battery load tested . If weak cells / dud cells , wont hold a charge and jump start often wont suffice . Check fuel cap and engine coolant temp sensor . Check for vac leaks and PCV valve and hose .Change fuel filter .
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The intermittent hard start im sure is still an issue but for this instance where i couldnt get it to start at all was due to an empty tank and a faulty fuel gauge/float. It started right up when i got some gas in it 🤦‍♂️ i will monitor the issue and look for dry rot in vaccum lines, chang the crankcase valve and fuel cap just to eliminate those issues since theyre cheap, if it continues ill remove and reseat the fuel pump(to be sure i installed it correctly with no leaks) and check the float and clean the injectors.
 

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If you end up pulling the fuel pump for whatever reason you can disassemble the potentiometer on the sending unit with a screwdriver and swab the contacts with a q-tip and some contact cleaner - or carb cleaner. Very easy to do and takes less than 5 minutes. I had the same fuel gauge issue with my 97 after it sat and it's been solid ever since.
 
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