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FMT2282, Ford Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 221
Experience:  Ford Senior Master Technician,ASE Master Technician, State Smog License and 23 years in the field
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1998 Ford Windstar: van..a check engine light &..stalling..neutral

Resolved Question:

I've a 1998 Ford Windstar van that has a check engine light & sometimes stalling when coming to a slow, complete or sudden stop. To manage the problem I press hard on the brake or shift to neutral when stopping or stopped. It then seems to idle better & not shut down. Now when I turn the ignition it is having difficulty starting. Sounds like it wants to turn over but lacks the power, like the battery is dead. Once it cleared the time settings the radio but left the stations intact.(Battery is good.) I must turn the ignition 2 or 3 times before it turns over. This problem has worstened. I later noticed that it turned on easier when I started it with my foot 'off' the brake pedal verses when 'on' it. The engine read a P1537 & P1538 code-Detected the signal from the Intake Manifold Runner Control fault 1 was less than expected-valve stuck open-mechanical & open or shorted circuit conditon. Q) Would this cause all these problems & can I change the (IMRC) myself? or is there a cheaper way.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  FMT2282 replied 7 years ago.


My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd like to help you figure this out. It sounds like you have a couple of different problems going on.

The IMRC runner controls have a common problem. Here is a picture of the system on your Windstar. If you follow the rods to the end that connects to the head,there is a plastic clip that holds them in place. Follow the arrows to the vacuum actuators and the rods are attached to them.This clip deteriorates and the rod falls off. If this happens,you can get these codes.To answer your question,yes you can change these parts yourself.

The long crank, the slow turning over and the key cycling,could be caused from a bad connection. Especially the loss of the time on the radio. You are going to have to perform some voltage drop tests. This is the easiest and cheapest way to pin it down at home. It could end up that the starter motor is bad or just a dirty connection.

You mentioned that you pulled codes. Do you have a code reader or a scanner that is capable of showing line data? It could be helpful later on. You are going to need a digital volt/ohm meter that has a 10 meg ohm impedance to do some of the testing. If you don't have one,you can pick one up at your local parts house for under $50 bucks.

Check the plastic retainers and let me know what you find. I can send you the next step for this depending on your results. Next, let me know where you are at with running a voltage drop test. If this is something new to you,it's ok. It is not as hard as it sounds to do. I just need to know what information to send to you.I will look for your post tomorrow about the same time.Thanks,Chuck


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