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sprinkles08
sprinkles08, ASE Certified Technician
Category: UK Car
Satisfied Customers: 21601
Experience:  ASE Master and Advanced level certified. Factory trained with 15 years dealership experience
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I have a espace 2004 3dci auto, it is good on level and down

Customer Question

I have a espace 2004 3dci auto , it is good on level and down hill but on a hill it coughs and splutters , I believe some problem with the fuel tank/system a few weeks ago i put some fuel in at a supermarket and the system immediatly started playing up, I think there maybe something in the fuel tank that is blocking the fuel pump at source is it possible to have the tank/filter cleaned without a great expense we live in france and it is very difficult to explain to a mechanic here as they seem to want to do everything but what you ask them and charge renault top rates to do it
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: UK Car
Expert:  Lou P replied 10 months ago.

Hello it is good that you payed attention to when it acted up. So how many miles have you driven since the issue and have you filled fuel since then ? What is the temperature in your area ?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
The temp is not abnormal and not much mileage
Expert:  Lou P replied 10 months ago.

ok, how low is your fuel tank level? i would suggest to flush the fuel if possible or drive a long drive to get to half a tank so you can refill with fresh fuel.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Done that a few times already
Expert:  Lou P replied 10 months ago.

oh ok, then it tells me it is not fuel, i will opt out hopefully another expert can advise. good luck,

Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 10 months ago.

Hello and welcome to Justanswer!

If the problem has to do with the attitude of the vehicle then it's almost surely fuel related. What is most likely happening is the pump is sucking air or is starving due to blockage.

When fuel level is lower it has to draw fuel through the inlet filter on the bottom of the pickup in the tank. If the filter is restricted then it will cause starvation.

When the level is higher fuel will fall over the sides of the reservoir from the top and it won't have to draw through the filter. A restricted filter can cause starvation issues when the level is roughly half tank or lower.

Its also possible that there is a cracked line, fitting, etc on the pickup above the level of the fuel and it's drawing air through it, aerating the fuel. Going up a hill may be uncovering this leak area and allowing it to draw air.

The tank can be removed to inspect the pickup for damage and also to inspect the inlet filter for blockage.