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Unread 07-29-2011, 09:55 AM   #1
zff
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Default EGR question

I know there are some accomplished DIYers and a few professional mechanics here, so I'm hoping someone can answer my question.

I have an old beater Mazda B3000/Ford Ranger. I replaced the DPFE sensor about 6 months ago because it was throwing a P0401 (EGR flow insufficient). Ever since then, the same code comes back about once a month. All I do is clear it, and it stays away for about a month -- but it always eventually comes back. I've been just living with this inconvenience, but lately, the code will come back in a few days.

I replaced the EGR valve about 3 years ago, so I'm pretty sure it's not that. I found a site that explains how to test each component of the EGR system, but I'd need to buy tools that I'll probably never use again. Before I do that, I want to make sure I'm not missing something obvious.

Anyone have any ideas?
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Unread 07-31-2011, 10:44 PM   #2
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dont quiet remember doing a ford ranger in the past but check the hoses to the vacuum solenoid if there is one. pretty sure u can take a regular vacuum pump to the erg see if the diaphragm is working correctly open closing. maybe carbon built up really bad causing it to block flow
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Unread 08-01-2011, 08:10 AM   #3
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Yeah, there's a vacuum solenoid, but I don't have a vacuum gauge or vacuum pump, so I don't have a good way to test the various components of the EGR system. Those are the tools I was trying to avoid buying. I don't want to have one of those crazy cluttered garages, so I try to avoid buying stuff I'll probably never use again.

I might be on to something, though. I was just reading last night that I was supposed to leave the battery disconnected when replacing the DPFE so the ECU can recalibrate to the new sensor. I didn't do that, so I disconnected the battery last night and reconnected it this morning. Then I cleared the code and crossed my fingers.
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Unread 08-09-2011, 09:31 AM   #4
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what G said, verify the vacuum lines are intact. on my Explorer i had a bad sensor, i changed it and cleared the ECM. it was that little rectangle shaped box, problem went away without having to change the EGR valve.

there is also a chance that your EGR is not good anymore, even though you changed it a few years ago. they are supposed to be changed in 60K-80K intervals. intermittent problems (codes) can be caused from a leak in the diaphram or a vacuum leak in the manifold.

you said the code is for insufficient flow, which i would focus on the sensor and diaphram on the EGR valve itself... but like G said, it could also be carbon buildup blocking the passages to the EGR valve, in the head or manifold areas. easy to check, remove the EGR and look inside.

i have a guage but no vacuum pump, what works for me most of the time is putting a hose to the diaphram and suck on it. if there is a leak you will feel it. you may not be able to raise the valve very much but you can see and hear if there is a leak.

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Unread 10-20-2011, 09:39 PM   #5
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The whole problem is it's a Ford... lol

Gotta check the vacuum lines and source vacuum... I've got a vacuum pump...
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