Cummins Surging and dying - Diesel Bombers

5.9 Liter CR Dodge Cummins 03-07 Discussion of 5.9 Liter Dodge Cummins Diesels with Common Rail Injection

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Old 02-03-2010, 02:37 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2010
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Default Cummins Surging and dying

I have a 2003 3500 cummins for a repo truck and I am having a problem with it surging, and dying. It has 275000 miles on it and is bone stock, and I live in houston, texas so i dont think that it could be a gelling issue. This truck has done this for awhile but now it is getting worse. Any ideas? The mechanics i have taken it to cant figure it out
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Old 02-03-2010, 02:55 PM
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Check the lift pump. With that many miles there is a good chance it's finally died and your CP3 is having to pump its own fuel now.

10 to 12 psi at a minimum, and no less than 10psi at WOT.
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Old 02-03-2010, 04:53 PM
cerberus60's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Minco OK
Posts: 712

Have you checked lift pump pressure?

The symptoms are classic FCA issues also.
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Old 05-18-2010, 11:08 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Reno, Nevada
Posts: 107

This one's for all who fought (or are fighting) with choppy idle / fuel issues. there is a part on the cp3 called a "fuel control actuator". After being told (by cummins-certified mechanics) that I needed a:
1/ new set of injectors
2/ new lift pump
3/ new cp3, I ended up just replacing the fca. the part cost $105, took all of 5 minutes to change out, and fixed the problems I had been trying to diagnose for 30,000 mi.
hope this helps...
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Old 05-18-2010, 11:41 AM
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Location: Mansfield, OH
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Start with the simple things first. Change the fuel filter. It's possible you got a bad tank of fuel and you may have to change it several times until you use up that tank or siphon the stuff out. Only buy fuel at reputable fuel stations with lots of diesel traffic... like truck stops. When fuel sits in the storage tanks too long, it can go "stale" and even grow algae! Then, like stated above, check the lift pump output pressure. A lot of the stock lift pumps die around 100,000 miles. If that checks out, change out the FCA on the injection pump.
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Old 05-19-2010, 03:40 PM
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Lumby BC
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FCA ... as the man said, I did mine on my 2003 after visiting a diesel injection shop, they said they really had no clue, had not seen the problem before, but that's what it was, simple fix, 20 minutes
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Old 05-06-2011, 03:58 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 12

Mine is having hard start and now dying while stoped, lift pump already done.
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Old 05-06-2011, 10:11 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Reno, Nevada
Posts: 107

While the lift pump is generally considered the weak link in the fuel delivery system, I've found that the cp3 has some suspect components too. there is a part on the cp3 that (when on the fritz) displays the very symptoms you've described. It's called a fuel control actuator, and when it pukes, it doesn't throw a code. The engine will stutter and cough at idle, but once underway, it'll feel ok. Chrysler will fix it for about $600, but $500 of that is "labor". Try tapping the side of the cp3 with a hammer (just tap-don't whack) that might free it up. OR, go to cummins, and spend $110 on a new actuator. It's held in place by two allen or torx screws, and literally takes all of 5 minutes to change out. You'll need the engine id# to get the right one- It's located on the driver's side of the valve cover. Easy stuff! hope it works for you.
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