Today, finally, after weeks of work trips, holidays and being ill I found the time to try and diagnose the fault with the Fiesta which – you will recall – failed to start after I replaced the number plate!!
I was expecting to have a long task to locate the problem and read sections of the Haynes manual about checking such things as the coil and the fuel injectors.
One key test mentioned was to check that the fuel pump makes a noise when the ignition is switched on as it pressurises the fuel system. Well, it was hard to be sure about this as the ventilation system makes an awful grinding noise at the same time but I didn’t think I could hear anything. So, on the basis that it was an easy thing to check I looked at the fuel pump fuse and it had blown!
One replacement 10A fuse later and the engine was running again! How I feel a fool. If I had spotted that the day it conked out I could have gone back for my free re-test, passed easily and had the car on the road for weeks!
Of course, this leaves the vital question of what caused the fuse to blow. One option is that the fuel pump is fouled up after years of use. I don’t want to have to remove it as you have to take the entire fuel tank out so perhaps the best plan is to run a bottle of fuel system cleaner through it. I will however wait until after the MoT.