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2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced help

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  • 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced help

    Well I thought I was sitting pretty this year. I sold off all my older NGVs and bought a couple Honda GXs and a used 2010 Ford F-150 (8 cylinder 5.4L) that already had an approved (YES - EPA approved) conversion (IMPCO plug&drive system - sequential injection). The system was installed about a year earlier by CLEANFUEL Solutions and Conversions (OK). My wife was happy - we were loving the newer truck and it was running almost exclusively on CNG. Well ..... until recently that is ..... when we had a couple occurances of rough running and had to switch over to gasoline (ran fine on gasoline). The vehicle started running rough and the check engine light came on. After we switched over to gasoline the check engine light would go away. Now the vehicle will not even try to run on CNG. When we try to select it we just get the red light at the top of the indicator and it beeps every 30s or so until the CNG system is deselected. Starts fine on gasoline and the tanks are full with the CNG fuel level indicating full (all CNG fuel level lights illuminated).

    I thought the manual from IMPCO might help but it says to bring it in for service. Problem here is that CLEANFUEL Solutions and Conversions is not close. Found a tech service manual on the internet that talks about a diagnostic program (PC based with CAN to USB cable) but I don't see anyone out there selling the cable/software. Does anyone out there have experience with the IMPCO plug&drive sequential CNG conversion and know the most common issues?

    I will probably call CLEANFUEL on Monday but I do not have the time to drive from Kansas City to Shawnee, OK probably leave it there for a while and come back for it later with a huge bill waiting for me.

    Nothing makes me madder than upgrading to newer vehicles to avoid maintenance issues and then having issues.

    I would really like to hear from someone that has some experience with this system. I'm guessing it could be something as simple as a fuel filter but it is hard to believe the fuel filter would get plugged in about a year. The diagnostic program seems very useful but I have no idea where to get it or how much it would cost.

    Any information on this system would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks.

  • #2
    Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

    Call Fuel Conversion Solutions in Grain Valley, MO and see if they have experience with the IMPCO conversions.....

    EDIT: Their website does list IMPCO as one of their conversion vendors: http://fuelconversionsolutions.com/fcs/conversions/cng/

    http://fuelconversionsolutions.com/fcs/contact-us/
    Last edited by snewman24; 01-11-2013, 07:17 PM.

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    • #3
      Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

      Take it over to Fuel Conversion Solutions in Grain Valley, MO - less than an hour from you. Lanny will fix it.
      http://fuelconversionsolutions.com/fcs/

      My first guess is that you have a problem BRC injector(s) now that the temperatures are dropping. IMPCO has a retrofit for all bi-fuel vehicles which have BRC injectors where they plumb a heated fuel rail to keep the injectors warm. Note that from model year 2012 they went to the Bosch injectors, solving the problem. You might want to call Fuel Conversion Solutions first to have them diagnose the issue over the phone first as I know there are other 2010 F-150's that have had to be fixed by IMPCO. Depending on the outcome they will order in what is needed to get it taken care of.

      Good luck and let us know how it goes.

      Edited to add: snewman24 and I fired off the same response simultaneously... how is that for service?

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      • #4
        Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

        Thanks for the quick response guys. I'll get in touch with the original installer first and then take it to Grain Valley if needed. I will probably need to get in touch with the previous owner as well to see what kind of warranty he might have received. Can you tell me whether this retrofit kit is something IMPCO is doing to make it right with customers or whether there is a big fee attached? I got this vehicle to get away from all the maintenance issues and it is disappointing that 8 months into ownership I'm back to maintenance issues. Thanks again for the insight and quick responce.

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        • #5
          Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

          IMPCO is providing the "cold climate" retrofit free of charge to all customers. They are also paying for installation at authorized facilities.
          http://www.impcoautomotive.com/index...e=auto-network

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          • #6
            Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

            Thanks John. I talked to the previous owner this morning and he said he is going to send me his original invoice. The generic IMPCO CNG manual (very thin supplement with minimal information) says the system is under warranty for 2 years or 24,000 miles so it may still be under warranty depending on the mileage when the previous owner had the system installed. Also found out some other information - it appears that Energex (I believe they are affiliated with Oklahoma Natural Gas) is having issues with there F150s in cold waether and has been installing the retofit kit on the pre 2012 installs. The guy I bought the truck from works for Energex and is familiar with there F150 CNG fleet. He did not seem to have any insight into BRC versus Bosch injectors but promised to ask around.

            Glad to hear IMPCO may be standing behind their products. Every time I look into buying a OEM CNG replacement part the costs are an order of magnitude more (ex. Honda GX fuel injectors) so I usually do not look forward to dealing with CNG issues.

            Thanks again for the help and I'll update the thread on my progress.

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            • #7
              Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

              I have a bit of an update. Since my last post I got a better piece of software for my ELM327 OBD II scanner and was getting one of the misfire codes stored. After clearing the code I was able to select the CNG system and it would try to switch over to CNG but would stall. If I let the vehicle heat up to full temperature and then arm the CNG system (IMPCO plug&drive) the truck (2010 F150 5.4L) will switch to CNG use and it appears to run fine. I have tested this over the past couple days and the vehicle trys to switch over and stalls every time so I leave the system disarmed and let it get fully up to temperature and try it and it switches over to CNG and runs on CNG fine. It has been rather cold the last few days. This has just about 100% convinced me that the system has the cold weather issue mentioned by others and the heated fuel rail retrofit may help.

              I also found out that I'm past the basic IMPCO warranty mileage (2year/24,000 miles) by about 15,000 miles but the system has only been on the truck for about 18 months. I have both the original installer and a local guy trying to find out whether IMPCO will help me out. My personal opinion is that this is not a wear or service issue but a known system deficiency. I'll be reporting back about where I end up with this when it gets resolved.

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              • #8
                Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

                Glad to hear you are nailing down the issue. IMPCO's policy is to provide the heated rail regardless of time and mileage.

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                • #9
                  Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

                  Final Update on my 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug & drive CNG system having cold weather issues. Fuel Conversion Solutions (Grain Valley, MO) worked with IMPCO to get the retrofit kit to address the cold weather issues and installed it a few weeks ago. No problems since the retrofit kit was installed and I would highly recommend Fuel Conversion Solutions. John was also correct that IMPCO provided the retrofit kit without any cost to me. I want to thank John and snewman24 for the information and Fuel Conversion Solutions for the professional work and time spent helping me.

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                  • #10
                    Re: 2010 F-150 with IMPCO plug&drive CNG system not working - need some experienced h

                    Glad we could help! We love the positive feed back. let us know if we can help with anything else.

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