Q: Jerky Engine Symptoms...

asked by on June 23, 2017

When fuel is 1/4 tank, the engine intermittently jerks during acceleration. Road bumps can also cause the jerk. CE light has come on a few times. Car seems close to dying. Did die once. On restart things are ok for a bit - enough to get a full tank. Experienced a jerk with a full tank once or twice, but usually the car purrs along fine until the tank is to 1/4 or so. Codes: From the flashing CE light #8 (MAF) and #73 (Vehicle Speed Sensor) Things I've done: Replaced spark plugs, fuel filter and fuel pump. Air filter is clean. Thought I had it solved with the fuel pump - until 1/4 tank. Haven't replaced the MAF or VSS. I realize the MAF could cause this symptom, but why only at 1/4 tank? How could the Vehicle Speed Sensor be affecting this? It's hard for me to understand why the low fuel might be related. Why do I even need a vehicle speed sensor on a manual tranny? Can't get more specific OBD codes due to the 20 pin connector? Next thought is clean the MAF then replace VSS...

My car has 138000 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

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Hi there. It’s quite possible that the fuel pump pickup is clogged with debris or wearing out, if these symptoms happen when there is less than 1/4 tank of gasoline. It’s always a good idea to not run the vehicle low on gasoline, as it can cause damage to fuel pumps and support systems. You might want to have a professional mobile mechanic complete a check engine light inspection since they’ll have the correct equipment to complete the scan, to let you know what codes exist.

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