Ford E 150 302 CARB Problems [maybe]


Old 05-13-05, 11:00 PM
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Unhappy Ford E 150 302 CARB Problems [maybe]

I have a 1985 Ford E 150 V8 302 2 barrel carb. My mechanic rebuilt the carb on Wednesday.

Here is the problem: Before the rebuilt the van would stop running for a few seconds while driving. It backfired [muffled not gunshot] and sounded/acted like it wasn't getting gas. Yet I could smell gas in the passenger compartment. It got lousy gas mileage [2 gallons to 15 miles]. It ran great on the highway but lousy in town. It would smooth out after I got past 20 mph. I thought it was the timing chain. Jim checked the timing and it was perfect. He checked the plugs and wires; no problems there.

When he took the carb out of the van he said the accelerator pump was leaking and that was why I smelled gas. Now the new carb rebuild is in and the van dies EVERY time I stop. I had to power brake it at every stoplight/turn. If I accelerate at normal speed, it backfires like there is water in the tank. He also changed the fuel filter. This backfiring is continuous until I get past 40 mph.

He and I are thinking that it could be one of the following:

1.) The fuel pump[s] [There are 2 tanks on this van] are going because it isn't getting gas.

2.) There is a vacuum leak somewhere

3.) The distributor is shot

4.) The electronics to the carb are bad

5.) The EMC is bad.

Anybody Have any ideas? Are we even close to the solution?



In His Grace,


Failure is NOT an option!!

Last edited by kwagner_51; 05-13-05 at 11:02 PM. Reason: Foprgot to add my name
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Old 05-14-05, 05:57 AM
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In my opinion, if it is getting 7MPG, it is GETTING GAS, and plenty of it. IF the timing is "right on" as he said, then I doubt the distributor is shot as well.
The fuel pumps are easy enough to test, just put a pressure tester on the line, and see what it pumps up to.
If the problem got WORSE AFTER the carb was rebuilt, then my guess is, he didn't do the rebuilt right, or it would be at LEAST as GOOD as it was before. He may have forgotten to attach a vac hose someplace when he was done however. Put a vacuum pump on it, and check it for leaks. (And be sure to check the Distributor cap for cracks.)
IF it were mine, I would do a compression check on the cylinders as well. Have you done a tune up on it lately? A complete tune up? Wires, plugs, etc..? Always a good place to start on a vehicle that is 20 years old.
Have you ran a code check on it? Worth a shot anyway, may point out a bad sensor.
Good luck.
Old 05-14-05, 12:23 PM
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I dont think you really ever had a carb problem besides the gas leak at the accelerator pump problem wich shouldnt of caused the engine to run bad.
recheck timing, carb adjustment, firing order, and check for dist shaft play I would suspect the backfiring to be ignition related originally and you should check ignition components such as pickup and module.
Old 05-16-05, 09:46 AM
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I would suspect a vacuum leak somewhere in your van. Dod your mechanic change the carb gasket and is it bolted down to specs? I would not waste my time looking for a leak as your van is 20 years old, go out and buy 10 feet of vacuum line and replace all of it. Lastly is the carb properly adjusted.
Old 05-16-05, 10:30 AM
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This motor is not computer managed

It certainly sounds like it's getting gas
It sounds like way too much gas

If this is the TFI ignition module, they usually just die
The only DIY test I know of for them is to replace it with a known good one
If it's the Duraspark ignition, that's another story
('85 would have been to close to the transition for me to know from here, specially in a truck/van)

The firing order on this engine is...well I better say "may" be different than you expect
The latter 302s and HOs had a different firing order, so someone more familier with them may assume this 2bbl is the same, it's probably not
It needs to be double checked

Carb adjustment

Vacuum leak

No-ones mentioned coil yet
This should have one of the old-school cylinder types
It's primary and secondary resistance can be checked with an ohmmeter
I'm not sure of the specs for those off-hand
But seeing as how the motor seems OK once it's going fast enough, I'd check the coil for sure
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