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Greetings.

Regrettably, a few days ago I ran my Mustang ('68, 289 A-code, automatic) dry of gas and now I am experiencing rather severe idling and acceleration issues. Idles just fine when in park, but gets choppy and weak when put into drive, and has a noticeable lack of acceleration and power. Also, predictably, this is affecting gear shifting as well... it shifts hard and has a audible whining sound for about 2-3 seconds before shifting.

I figured that it probably sucked a bunch of crap off the bottom of the fuel tank and clogged up my lines/fuel filter. Changed the filter (twice) and cleaned out the lines, but still the same recurring, although sporadic, issues. Sometimes it runs fine and sometimes it doesn't.

I know enough about cars to get by, but I am far from an expert. It was suggested by a knowledgeable friend that the carb bowl might have some crud or maybe some water in it. Either that or the fuel pump has become damaged, perhaps? Unfortunately, I don't have the resources to do any of this on my own time right now, so I'd appreciate a few opinions before I take it back to a shop and risk unnecessarily wasting money.

Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
 

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I don't think you have damaged the fuel pump, the worst you could have done is sucked up some crude, and it is on the valves in the fuel pump, since the car is running, it should clean the valves and the lines, the only thing it can not clean is the stuff in the carb since it is the end of the line, you did not say what carb you have, if it is a autolite 2b or 4b, you can remove the top, and look in the fuel bowl and see if there a bunch of crude around the main jets and power valve. It could also be coincidence that your problem developed at this time, you could have a fouled spark plug, a bad plug wire, bad coil wire, etc. If you have some carb spray type cleaner, spray some down the carb venturies while the engine is running, and see if that helps. Post your results. Good Luck.
 

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It is possible that the fuel pump was damaged and is leaking fuel into the engine. If that has happened then you will have serious problems the longer you try to figure it out running the engine. First check to see if you have any fuel leaking out of the weep hole on the side of the fuel pump. It may or may not show signs of leakage. The only way to make sure is to remove it and run a pressure test. I would also check the oil level and see if it looks thin or smells like gas. This can cause all sorts of the same issues you are experiencing. The power can be down, the engine will run rough, you should probably see some smoke out of the tailpipe as well. I would change the oil and filter and replace the fuel pump and give the carb a good rebuild and see if that doesnt help.
 

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Your fuel filter should have caught the crud before it got to your carb although it sounds like some of it might have made it through if your are experiencing those symptoms. You might get lucky and be able to clear it up by squirting some carb cleaner into your external idle bleeds. If not, you are probably looking at pulling the carb and a "rebuild" (basically an overnight soak in carb cleaner and a good blow-out along with new gaskets)....shouldn't cost all that much if you have an honest mechanic or do it yourself.
 
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