Water in Fuel sensor problems...HELP!! - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
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6.0L Power Stroke Engine and Drivetrain Discussion of the 6.0L Power Stroke diesel engine and drivetrain in the 2003-Up Super Duties and Excursions. No gas engine discussion allowed except on transmissions and drivetrain that pertain to all models. Please confine discussion of topics in this forum to those items that are specific to the 6.0L Power Stroke engine.

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Old 10-20-2010, 06:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Water in Fuel sensor problems...HELP!!

I have a 2004 6.0 Powerstroke that has been a great truck. About 4 months ago on a road trip my engine shut down and the water in fuel light came on. I drained the seperator and found no water. I started the truck again and same proble. I drained again and still no water. The truck ran fine for 400+ miles then I got the alarm again. Currently I get this probelm intermittently... truck will run great for a few days, then 3 alarms on one day. I disconnected the sensor and taped it off...truck ran good for two days then started alarming again. I then cut the sensor off completely thinking the module may be bad. Still sam problem. Never have I had water in the fuel. I cannot determine what is throwing this alarm. Wouldn't be such a pronlem if it didn't cut my power every time. Anyone have some great idea? I would be ever grateful!
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Old 10-20-2010, 09:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I have a 2004 6.0 Powerstroke that has been a great truck. About 4 months ago on a road trip my engine shut down and the water in fuel light came on. I drained the seperator and found no water. I started the truck again and same proble. I drained again and still no water. The truck ran fine for 400+ miles then I got the alarm again. Currently I get this probelm intermittently... truck will run great for a few days, then 3 alarms on one day. I disconnected the sensor and taped it off...truck ran good for two days then started alarming again. I then cut the sensor off completely thinking the module may be bad. Still sam problem. Never have I had water in the fuel. I cannot determine what is throwing this alarm. Wouldn't be such a pronlem if it didn't cut my power every time. Anyone have some great idea? I would be ever grateful!
maybe a short in the wire from chafing, higher than where you cut, and its grounding on whatever it's rubbung on. are you able to track the entire wiring assembly ? that would be my first bet, next i would replace both fuel filters ..
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Old 10-20-2010, 10:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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This is a common issue I've seen on our fleet trucks. If you take off the front plate of the HFCM where the sensor is you will most likely see chunks of I-dont-know-what infront of the sensor. They actually look like the fat you trim off of a steak to me.

Anyway we clean that area out and spray off the sensor real good and usually that solves the problem. If that doesn't work we replace the sensor and that usually does it for sure. I've never seen a shorted harness cause that issue, but thats not to say its not possible.

I would start by removing the cover and making sure its all clean, thats easier than tracing a wiring fault that may not exist.
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Old 10-21-2010, 12:27 AM   #4 (permalink)
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It's the sensor, just replace it
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Old 10-21-2010, 04:32 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for the suggestions. I really don't think that it is the sensor, thats why I cut it off completely, to see determine if the problem was in the sensor. If it still has the problem with sensor cut off and sitting in the cab I am inclined to believe the problem lies elsewhere...am I wrong? I read on some other forums that there was a programing issue...one said he just disconnected the battery for a few minutes and prob went away..hoping its something this easy. Going to replace filters tomorrow....needs doing anyway, and see if that makes a difference. I looked in the HFCM and it looks pretty clean...no corosion visible on the sensor. Sure am getting hell from my Chevy friends on this! Thanks again and let me know if you have any other ideas.
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Old 10-21-2010, 06:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have a 2004 6.0 Powerstroke that has been a great truck. About 4 months ago on a road trip my engine shut down and the water in fuel light came on...

This is a curious statement for two reasons in that first, you report that there is no water in the fuel system and second, a WIF light will not cause a 6.0L to shut down. Have you retrieved any DTC's from the PCM?
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Old 10-25-2010, 12:57 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Ok...so now I did the batterry disconnect thing and drove 200 miles before I started getting the light again. There are no DTC's in the system. Everything looks clean...no corosion, build up etc. Ford Dr.... the engine doesn't usually shut down....just returns to idle and won't accelerate...I back off the throtle for a few seconds until thwe WIF light goes off and then I can accelerate again. Going nuts here!
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Old 10-26-2010, 05:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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What next? I changed the fuel filters, even though I couldn't even tell the difference the old ones were so clean. All of the resevoirs and bowls are super clean. Drove the truck 6 blocks and had the same problem. Had the truck in the shop all day and now have a bunch of mechanics scratching their heads. At this point I'm thinking it has to be a programing error or short in the wiring somewhere? Any ideas?? Just waiting for the thing to stall out while pulling into traffic with my kids in the rig!
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Old 10-26-2010, 06:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Again, your symptoms are not things that should be related. Your suspicions of an electronic or harness problem are not unfounded. Unfortunately, your "mechanics" are probably not up to the task. May I recommend a dealer? One that knows diesels... one with the diagnostic equipment to diagnose this???
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Old 10-27-2010, 08:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Again, your symptoms are not things that should be related. Your suspicions of an electronic or harness problem are not unfounded. Unfortunately, your "mechanics" are probably not up to the task. May I recommend a dealer? One that knows diesels... one with the diagnostic equipment to diagnose this???


X2...Take it to a Dealer.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Pdate for anyone interested. Seems the problem was in the programing. I hooked my tuner back up (had it set to stock) and haven't had the problem for almost a week now. Going to run it tuned for awhile...drop it back to stock and see if it does it again. Thanks again for the suggestions and help.
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Old 11-02-2010, 10:53 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Pdate for anyone interested. Seems the problem was in the programing. I hooked my tuner back up (had it set to stock) and haven't had the problem for almost a week now. Going to run it tuned for awhile...drop it back to stock and see if it does it again. Thanks again for the suggestions and help.
You never mentioned tuner in the original post. I understand that you may have had it in stck mode, but knowing you usually run a tune or at least have the ability to do so would have helped the troubleshooting.
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Old 11-25-2010, 04:45 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Hade same issue

I had the same issue you are describing and replaced every filter in sight along with removing plate and cleaning the entire fuel system. Heck while I was under there I painted the under carriage and wiped down entire underside of body. I was spending more time under my truck than in it. I removed the sensor (turn it about 45 degress and pull it out). You will get a small deisel bath. Look at the back side of the sensor for and residue or rust. You can either blow it off really good or purchase a new one fairly cheap ($20-$30) and install. Once I did that all was good and no more wif lights. Hope this helps and your wife likes the smell of deisel.
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