remove air from fuel lines? - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
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99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke Engine and Drivetrain Discussion of the 99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke diesel engine and drivetrain in the 1999-Up Super Duty trucks 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 7.3L Power Stroke engine.

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Old 04-06-2008, 03:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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remove air from fuel lines?

I have a 02 f-550 with a 7.3L Im new to diesels, so I'm going to need some help here. The truck was running fine, then all of a sudden, it was hardly running. Ford changed the fuel filter, and air filter, ran good. Now one month later, its doing it again. I got a fuel filter to do it myself. I took the old one out and the gunk build up inside the can was nasty. I think its rust from my tank. I cleaned it out, installed the new one. IT was hard to get started, but i got it. BUT, it runs just like it did b4 i installed the filter. I think theres air in the fuel line and i have no clue how to get it out. I looked all over google and cant find crap. And i how noowners book. Please help. Like i said, im new to diesels, so a step by step walk through would be great.
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Old 04-06-2008, 04:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The fuel gets recirculated through the tank return line and excess air just goes to the tank. No need to purge air, it does it by itself.
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Old 04-06-2008, 05:04 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The fuel gets recirculated through the tank return line and excess air just goes to the tank. No need to purge air, it does it by itself.
then should i just keep it running for a while, I had it running for about 5-7 minutes and it seemed to get a little better, but i dont want to go messing anything up. The check engine light is on and the truck just keep running on low idel. If i need to keep it running, how long? This is the first i heard someone say this. I keep reading about bleeding it out with the fuel lines, injectors, this and that. Im pulling my hair out my head.
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Old 04-06-2008, 05:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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It doesn't take long for the air to get purged. If you still have issues after 10 minutes of running, it probably in not the problem. When you open the water sep drain, what comes out?
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Old 04-06-2008, 05:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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It doesn't take long for the air to get purged. If you still have issues after 10 minutes of running, it probably in not the problem. When you open the water sep drain, what comes out?
is the the yellow valve next to the fuel filter? if not, i have no clue what and where it is.
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Old 04-06-2008, 05:21 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Right. If you turn the yellow lever, do you get junk from the tank? Collect it in a clean container. You may have a restriction in your tank.
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Old 04-06-2008, 06:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Right. If you turn the yellow lever, do you get junk from the tank? Collect it in a clean container. You may have a restriction in your tank.
i just changed the filter, i cleaned out the junk (looks like rust build up). there was about a 1/4 of inch on the bottem. I flushed it all out, cleaned it all. That shoudl be clean. I dont think its air. I had it running again for 15 mins and still the same. I took it down my driveway and it has 1% of power. It doesnt want to move. It runs, starts right up. I dont know what to do, i cant get it to the dealer. Anyone have this problem? I just had the cam senior recal fixed. So its not that.
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Old 04-06-2008, 07:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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With a check engine light, getting it scanned would tell you for sure, but the running rough sounds like you've got a problem with your UVCH (Under Valve Cover Harness) connector or wires.

If you look at the inside edge of your valve covers you will see a flat 9 pin connector that plugs into the side at the base of the valve cover. You can check for a problem with the wiring or plug with an OHM meter. Unplug the connector that you can see and test the pins.
The 9-pin plug is wired as follows:

G G I I C I I G G

G=Glow Plug +
I = Injector +
C= Injector Common

The injectors fire with a 115VDC signal from the IDM. Do Not pierce the wires to test.


Test between "I" and "C" to test the injectors, should be less than 5.0 Ohms.

To check glow plugs Test between "G" and battery ground. Should be between 0.6 and 2.0 Ohms


Edit: Fuel is recirculated from the fuel bowl to the tank, but if you run out of fuel it's possible to get air into the fuel rails (which are dead ends) I don't think thats your case here. Also be careful cleaning out the bottom of the fuel bowl. There's a little wire in the bottom that is your fuel bowl heater element. If you break that the truck won't start unless you replace the fuse and unplug or replace the heater.
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Old 04-06-2008, 07:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Does it idle fine and sound ok, but just no power , or does it run like crap too? Tell us what it is like so we can point you in the right direction.
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Old 04-06-2008, 09:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by rusher75 View Post
I have a 02 f-550 with a 7.3L Im new to diesels, so I'm going to need some help here. The truck was running fine, then all of a sudden, it was hardly running. Ford changed the fuel filter, and air filter, ran good. Now one month later, its doing it again. I got a fuel filter to do it myself. I took the old one out and the gunk build up inside the can was nasty. I think its rust from my tank. I cleaned it out, installed the new one. IT was hard to get started, but i got it. BUT, it runs just like it did b4 i installed the filter. I think theres air in the fuel line and i have no clue how to get it out. I looked all over google and cant find crap. And i how noowners book. Please help. Like i said, im new to diesels, so a step by step walk through would be great.
You may have additional problems but for now I would deal with the garbage you are finding in your fuel filter. If it was truly nasty in only a month, as you stated above you have found your main problem.

Drop the tank and flush the gunk out. Inspect the liner of the fuel tank, some tanks were painted internally and the paint has been known to deteriorate on occasion.

Every time you change the fuel filter your engine will run rough for a little while as you have introduced air into the fuel system. There isn't anything for you to do except to drive/idle it for a while. Our trucks have electric fuel pumps (self priming thank God) it just takes a while to get it worked back out.
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Old 04-07-2008, 06:29 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Does it idle fine and sound ok, but just no power , or does it run like crap too? Tell us what it is like so we can point you in the right direction.
it idles rough, but it runs. I rev it up and when i let off, it wants to stall. And like i said, it has not power. It feels like taking off in a car in 5th gear.
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Old 04-07-2008, 06:33 AM   #12 (permalink)
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You may have additional problems but for now I would deal with the garbage you are finding in your fuel filter. If it was truly nasty in only a month, as you stated above you have found your main problem.

Drop the tank and flush the gunk out. Inspect the liner of the fuel tank, some tanks were painted internally and the paint has been known to deteriorate on occasion.

Every time you change the fuel filter your engine will run rough for a little while as you have introduced air into the fuel system. There isn't anything for you to do except to drive/idle it for a while. Our trucks have electric fuel pumps (self priming thank God) it just takes a while to get it worked back out.
Well with the about of time i had it running after i did the fuel filter change, it should be running ok. At least be able to move down the street. As for the tanks, i heard the same thing, but i thought it was the tanks rusting out and it sends rust through the lines. How would i go about flushing the whole system. Will it screw up anything else doing that like injectors, glow plugs?
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Old 11-30-2011, 05:14 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Hi my name is nick and I really need some help. I have a 2002 f-250 6speed and I had to replace the head gasket. Well everything is back together now and it acts like it wants to start but it dosnt. I checked the valve cover connectors and everything and still can't figure it out if someone can please help me with this I appreciate it thank u...nick
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Old 12-01-2011, 05:40 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Hi my name is nick and I really need some help. I have a 2002 f-250 6speed and I had to replace the head gasket. Well everything is back together now and it acts like it wants to start but it dosnt. I checked the valve cover connectors and everything and still can't figure it out if someone can please help me with this I appreciate it thank u...nick
Nick, you should probably start a new thread on this as your issue likely isn't related to this one.

That said, you need to make sure you're getting high pressure oil pressure to the injectors. It takes a while to bleed the air out before it will start. Try cranking on it for 20-30 seconds, then let the starter cool down before cranking on it again. Doing this a few times should bleed the air out of the high pressure oil lines. If you have a way to monitor the high pressure oil pressure (Auto Enginuity, various scanners, or a manual 3-4000psi gauge plumbed into the head), that will be a good start. The injectors need ~500psi to start.
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