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Interesting fuel supply problem

Calaber

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More Captiva problems.

Our 3.2 petrol Captiva starts easily and runs smoothly - about what you would expect this type of vehicle to run like.

Until....you refuel it. Every time I refill the tank, the damned thing refuses to start first go. It cranks over for a few seconds, then finally starts to run but at a very low speed. This goes on for about five seconds then it will slowly accelerate to normal idle speed. Using the accelerator to bring the idle up to normal speed does nothing.

I suspect it's something to do with the fuel pump, which is probably one of those damned in-tank things. There is no in-line fuel filter so a blockage there is out of the question.

I'm trying to work out what happens when the tank is refilled. The only things I can think of occurring is that the fuel is colder than the interior of the tank and the pump, and the drop in temperature somehow affects the pump, or the agitation of the incoming fuel is affecting the pick-up strainer or the pump somehow.

Electronic parts for this thing are pretty expensive and I sure don't want to start dropping the tank to replace the pump without being certain that's the problem. I don't have any workshop manual as it's one of those cars that you have to obtain the genuine factory CD for and it's also expensive, so the process involved in tank removal etc, is an unknown at this stage.

Any suggestions?
 

SavVYute

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Do you think it has to do with brimming the tank with fuel?
What happens if you only take the fuel cap off and replace it again without putting any fuel in?
 

Calaber

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Do you think it has to do with brimming the tank with fuel?
What happens if you only take the fuel cap off and replace it again without putting any fuel in?
Hi Sav. Thanks for the suggestion. Haven't tried anything like that yet. I'll give it a go and let you know.

We often have the fuel get so low that the warning light comes on, but even when the fuel is that low, the car starts normally. Fill it and it starts to play silly buggers, though it didn't do it yesterday after a refill. I thought that filling it at the quarter mark, instead of letting it go till the warning light illuminates, might change things but last week, it played up despite only needing a 3/4 fill. I should add that it only plays up on the first start after refill. Once it gets running properly, every re-start is normal until the next re-fill. That's why I'm wondering if the temperature of the incoming fuel, which is probably a fair bit cooler than the fuel inside the tank, might be affecting the pump somehow.

I've also wondered if it has anything to do with the fuel return pipe system but I can't think how that might be affected.
 

delcowizzid

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Purge solinoid sucking raw fuel in instead of vapours
 

Calaber

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Purge solinoid sucking raw fuel in instead of vapours
Now you have my attention. Never heard of a purge solenoid. What's its purpose and where is it located?

Edit: Just checked on Google. The description given in one answer exactly replicates my problem. All I have to do now is find the bloody thing. I assume it's somewhere under the bonnet, but I've never even seen the charcoal canister. I'll just check the fuel lines from the engine backwards.

Delco - thanks for the tip. Might not be my problem but it's sure worth chasing. Rep given with gratitude.
 

delcowizzid

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be somewhere on the engine near the back ide say like ecotec in commodore.a lot of people have been having issues after fillup
 

Calaber

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be somewhere on the engine near the back ide say like ecotec in commodore.a lot of people have been having issues after fillup
My dear ol' Ecotec VY never displayed any temperament like that. This thing, however, with its Alloytec.....I've had a few issues, every one electrical. Of course, this one might be a ruptured diaphragm, or it could be electrical.
 
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