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Old 05-13-2007, 10:32 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: SE Wisconsin
Posts: 1
Gas Leak, Fast Idle, No Shift

My 1989 420SEL has a leak somewhere near the fuel pump. After I shut the car off, a small puddle of gas shows up on the driveway just inside the right rear wheel and I smell gas. I believe the system is losing pressure because it is hard to start the next time I go to start the car--especially if it has been sitting for an hour or so. Also, the car will not idle below 1500rpm and will not shift into Drive(Overdrive?). I have had the air cleaner off and watched the 'butterfly' in the fuel distributor stay open about 1/16 of an inch instead of closing so the engine will idle properly.

Are the 3 problems related? Is a computer sensing low fuel pressure and causing the fast idle and no-shift problems?
What repairs may be needed?
Any ideas on cost of repairs?

Another problem--I cannot open/unlock the trunk with the correct key and it will not unlock when I unlock the rest of the car. The button appears to be stuck about 1/3 of the way in. How can I get the trunk to release so I can repair or replace the lock?

Thank you in advance for your help.

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Old 05-14-2007, 09:34 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Atlanta.
Posts: 366
First off, I would take the car in and have it put up on a lift to determine the fuel leak.
Chances are you have a brittle, leaky fuel hose, or one of the crush seal fittings are leaking at the fuel pump area.
I would have the fuel filter replaced and all the crush seals at the fuel pump area replaced along with (any) brittle fuel hoses.
If you just try to tighten one of the fittings, chances are other will start to leak as well, and this is a job you really do not want to do yourself on the ground because it is messy and could catch fire real quickly without having it on a lift with the battery disconnected, and the right lines pinched off to perform the job.
Also the lines that you have to pinch off usually crack during the process and need replaced as a result.
It's a messy job no matter how it's done, and I always tie rags around my wrists when doing it because the fuel runs down your arms and arm pits and burn pretty bad on those sensitive skin areas.
So doing it on the ground could turn into a real hornets nest.

Let the tech see how it runs after that and then check your other issues if they still exist, but you want that fuel leak fixed like now.

You may be able to free your trunk button by shooting some P/B blaster or something into the lock assembly, but it's hard to fix it without seeing it.
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