I had the day off today. As much as i would have LOVED to laze about all day, there were/are things that must be taken care of. It is what it is…welcome to bring a responsible adult. 😝
So first order of business today was to drive the van up to O’Reilly’s to have them wave their Magic Decoder Ring over the van to tell me what it says is wrong. Two codes: P0171 and P0174. We go inside, find the codes in the computer, and print out the details.
Each code correlates to each “hemisphere” of the engine: either left/right or front/back, depending on how your engine is situated. Mine is front/ back (1996 Ford Windstar, 3.8l engine). This means things on the back of my engine, such as half my spark plugs, require the ability of automotive contortionism. This is a skill developed over time with growing experience working on cars. Being double jointed in most of the joints in both arms, and possibly some in your legs and spine, would be extremely beneficial for this. Sadly, i am not double jointed.
Anyway, these two codes indicate potential issues with a number of different things without providing any certainty on any of them being the exact problem. 😕 Let’s start with the code definitions first:
P0171 means Fuel System Too Lean (Bank 1)
P0174 means the same thing only in Bank 2.
(bank = hemisphere)
So what does this tell me? That anything from the MAF (mass air flow) sensor to the PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) valve, EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) passages, to the oil dip stick not being seated properly could be why my check engine light won’t go off. It won’t pass emissions with it on. Crud.
So, i replaced the MAF sensor and the PCV valve, flushed the radiator (it really needed it), and did an oil change. Ok. Lance and i did this together. Check engine light still on. Double crud. If we can’t chase this down before money gives out or Monday rolls around, I’ll be buying another $30 trip permit.
Yes, a little frustrated, anxious about this but not giving up. I’ll figure it out. The process can be defeating sometimes. This is probably more true since with every new part installed or treatment added, I am certain this is the fix. I know better but it still happens.
Its getting dark so the van goes on hold for now. We have a clean tomorrow, a 2bdrm/2bath condo. Hopefully it isn’t horrible so we can get home early and start on the van again. Tomorrow has got to be the day, right? 😜
Dragonfly Gypsy Out and About