Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall - 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 11-29-2005, 05:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

I have a 2000 F250SD Diesel with 128K miles. I live in SoCal so it doesn't get to cold. When I start the truck in the morning, it starts fine, idles fine, but as soon as I drive it it starts losing power, running real rough and does stall if I can't baby the throttle well enough. After stalling I have to crank the engine over for at least 30-40 secs before it starts to sound like it wants to run, then it either starts or I have to try it again. After getting to restart, it runs rough for another minute, then everything is fine and it runs great.
This started about 2 weeks ago, when the weather got colder, around 42F overnight.
Batteries are 5 years old and I have them scheduled to be replaced soon.
Also, last year when I was in the mountains at around 6500ft and 25F temps overnight, I couldn't start it. Lots of white smoke, but no fire. I finally did get it started, but it took 45 minutes.

Any help would be appreciated. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]

I know I'm well overdue for an oil change. And I'm going to Amsoil with their dual filter system.
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2000 F250SD 4x4 CC LB SRW, 7.3L, 4" SS Exhaust, K&N Intake Filter, "A" pilar guages, Autometer Trans Temp, EGT, Boost, Amsoil through out, Amsoil 2 stage filter system, Mag-Hytec trans pan & dif cover, Banks Big Head Waste Gate, FactoryTech Valve Body, 315 BFG KOs & Yes I made the 315 spare fit, Rancho 9000 shocks, Tru-Cool Max trans cooler, Aux/BU Lights, T/C lock. Next: Fuel System Mods, Max A/C mod.
1975 TLC 2F, H42, 4.88 gears, Power Steering, Shackle Revearsal, Next: SOA, Rear Disc Brake mods
A Scouter Forever.
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Old 11-29-2005, 07:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

Fuel pump maybe? Mine went out at 57K. As I understand the PSD, more fuel means more power. Not enough fuel especially under load...I'd look at the pump first. My .02
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Old 11-29-2005, 07:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

it could also be the oil pump or fuel filter
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

After I'm on the road for a couple of minutes, I have no more problems. Even when the truck sits all day a work, it starts right up and I'm able to drive it away. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/warmsmile.gif[/img]
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2000 F250SD 4x4 CC LB SRW, 7.3L, 4" SS Exhaust, K&N Intake Filter, "A" pilar guages, Autometer Trans Temp, EGT, Boost, Amsoil through out, Amsoil 2 stage filter system, Mag-Hytec trans pan & dif cover, Banks Big Head Waste Gate, FactoryTech Valve Body, 315 BFG KOs & Yes I made the 315 spare fit, Rancho 9000 shocks, Tru-Cool Max trans cooler, Aux/BU Lights, T/C lock. Next: Fuel System Mods, Max A/C mod.
1975 TLC 2F, H42, 4.88 gears, Power Steering, Shackle Revearsal, Next: SOA, Rear Disc Brake mods
A Scouter Forever.
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Old 11-30-2005, 04:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

I think a similar post with this problem came up before. All of the above recomendations are good. But I think in the previous post someone mentioned checking the oil level. I know is sounds silly, but if there is not enough oil to keep the pressure up, the engine will stall. Just a thought.
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Old 12-02-2005, 03:46 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

Currently got the exact same symptoms on my 1999 F250 SuperDuty. so am very interested in how you get this solved. From my experience, it just keeps getting worse over time:

Additional notes.

a month or two ago I zipped out of my driveway and headed up a 6 degree hill with healthy acceleration. Within about a quarter mile, the engine started losing power (but still running) and within a few seconds it was weakly 'surging' ... barely alive, but just enough power to get it off the road. I let it set for a minute and then started it up; it ran roughly for less than a minute, then ran perfectly for the next hours and days.
Within a week or so, the same thing happened again, same distance from my house, going up hill.
Within weeks of that, it starting happening also going downhill but the problem occured further away (a mile or so).
My initial impression is that some part of the fuel line was draining and that a certain amount of fuel was left in the line (enough for quarter mile uphill and one mile downhill) with air behind that. Once the air got purged, everything was all right until I left the truck sit for at least overnight. In the past few weeks, the problem has worsened to where it goes through 3 or 4 cycles of : starving the fuel line, then recovering within 30 seconds ( often at a very weak idle), then starving again. Once I get through the 3rd or fourth cycle (all happening within 5 minutes of launching off from home) everything runs fine, even when I leave the vehicle off for a few hours.

I will check my oil level today, ... I probably am ready for a fuel filter change too...is there anything to watch out for there in inserting the new filter?

thanks,
paul
ps. where/what is the 'yellow lever' referred to in some postings...used for priming the fuel line. Where is that and what directions to use ? thanks
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Old 12-02-2005, 09:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Starts fine, idles fine, but loses power and can stall

5 quarts of oil added and the problem is no more ... geez am I embarassed !
thanks to all who suggested this troubleshooting... I just wish I had looked at the oil pressure gauge before I added the oil... I may have missed a low pressure reading... if so, shame on me.

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