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A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email us.



Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

'95 Ford Crown Vic, Engine Warning Light Always On

Q: My ‘95 Ford Crown Vic runs fine but the engine warning light has been on since last year. My code reader for the OBDII system indicates the code P0401, which indicates a low EGR flow. The EGR valve, the relay and the coolant sensor were replaced. I read at a car web site that the EGR sensor lines are very narrow and require cleaning with a coat hanger and vacuum cleaner to get out the carbon build up and was told that Ford has a lousy EGR system. Do you have any ideas on the problem? I have a mechanical background and understand auto electronics and repair, I just don’t want to keep replacing parts.

A: The computer code that you’re referring to is most often the result of a restricted passage in the EGR system. The Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system feeds exhaust gases back to the engine. The original purpose of this system was to reduce a rather nasty exhaust emission. Overtime engineers found that with proper operation the EGR system would not only reduce emissions, it would also reduce spark knock and improve fuel economy. The computer in your vehicle has the ability to calculate the flow rate of exhaust gases through the EGR system. If the flow rate drops, the computer alerts the driver with the check engine warning light. I regret to inform you that much of what you have replaced does not cause a low rate of flow in the EGR system. The most common cause is restriction in the passages for the system. The fix is likely a good cleaning of the plumbing for the EGR system.

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