7.3 Powerstroke PCM Failure Symptoms, ECM Failure, Starting Problems

Nothing is perfect in this world. 7.3 Powerstroke engine is not an exception too. Though experts often consider 7.3 Powerstroke as the second-best diesel engine ever, it has some common issues. You have to face these issues more frequently if you don’t maintain the engine properly.

Issues related to the lift pump, UVCH connectors, cam position sensor, injection pressure regulator valve, injector control pressure sensor, overheating, fuel heater are the most common 7.3 Powerstroke problems. However, you should not worry much about these issues as in most time, they are very easy and cost-friendly to fix.

Meanwhile check Starter For 7.3 Powerstroke for 7.3 starter upgrade and 7.3 starter replacement.

7.3 Starting Problems

The engine starting problem is one of the most common issues with the 7.3 Powerstroke. Sometimes the 7.3 Powerstroke won’t start and sometimes the engine will crank but won’t start.

The starting problems will mostly happen due to a failed IPR (Injector Pressure Regulator). The starting problem may also happen due to a failed CPS (Camshaft Position Sensor) too.

7.3 common problems

Even though the 7.3 Powerstroke has a lot of fame for its reliability, people often back off going for it just because of its frequent minor problems. Let’s have a look at the most common 7.3 Powerstroke problems.

One open secret: Most of these problems are pretty easy to solve and cost-friendly.

1. Lift pump

Besides the IPR and CPS issues, a faulty lift pump also causes trouble to start the engine. Checking the fuel bowl is the way to be sure of this issue. As soon as you are sure of the problematic lift pump, go for a replacement.

2. UVCH connectors

If you start to see poor performance of the engine and misfiring, you should definitely go and check the UVCH (Under Valve Cover Harness). As a UVCH is a bridge between an IDM and the injectors, a failed UVCH can cause a cylinder not to function.

3. Cam position sensor

Ask anyone, what the most common 7.3 Powerstroke problem is. Chances are you will get the same answer from everybody and that is the CPS (cam position sensor) issue.

The job of a cam position sensor is to provide signals to the PCM so that the PCM can direct the IDM to deliver the right amount of fuel to each cylinder. If there is a problem with the CPS, you are most likely to face a starting problem with the engine.

4. Injection pressure regulator valve

Another common problem you may face with the 7.3 Powerstroke is the IPR (injection pressure regulator valve) issue. The IPR can fail due to many reasons. Whatever the reason is, you need to find it as soon as possible and resolve it. Otherwise, you are going to face a series of problems due to the failed IPR.

5. Injector control pressure sensor

If the ICP sensor fails, even if you have the engine running, the feeling will never be better. You can verify a failed ICP sensor by simply looking out for oil in the sensor.

6. Overheating

Overheating is kind of a general problem with the 7.3 Powerstroke. Even though it may seem like a minor issue, you should not ignore it. Most likely the overheating problem will happen due to a bad water pump or a thermostat.

What is Powerstroke starter?

A Powerstroke starter basically means an aftermarket part that helps to solve the starting problem. After around 100,000 miles, the stock starter of 7.3 Powerstroke will most likely be a big failure. That’s when you should search for the best starter for 7.3 Powerstroke. You will be amazed to see the differences these aftermarket starters make.

IPR valve 7.3 Powerstroke problems

Are you facing starting or rough running problem on your 7.3 Powerstroke? If that is the case, the most probable reason behind these problems is a faulty IPR (injection pressure regulator) valve.

An IPR valve is responsible to control the oil pressure coming from the HPOP (high-pressure oil pump). After supplying the necessary oil pressure to the injectors, the IPR bypasses the remaining pump pressure through the HPOP.

As a bad IPR valve can’t control the level of oil pressure anymore, there won’t be an order of this process. That will result in creating problems related to starting.

7.3 IDM problems

Is your 7.3 Powerstroke still idling rough and stalling even though you have replaced both the CPS and ICP? If you face this situation, most probably the IDM (injector driver module) of your engine has gone bad. If you are going for a replacement, don’t forget to check the specific number of your IDM part of the engine.

7.3 Powerstroke PCM failure symptoms

Modern cars are more dependent on computers. Even though you do not consider the 7.3 Powerstroke as a modern engine, the PCM is still a very important part. If a PCM fails, the engine (the vehicle) won’t be able to manage the air to fuel ratio or something like engine timing properly.

The PCM also enhances the performance by adjusting the engine in bad conditions. That is why a failed PCM is not the thing you would want to happen to your vehicle. Anyway, how do you know about a failed PCM? You have to get a hold on to the symptoms. They are-

1. Check engine light or other lights such as ABS and traction control

2. Reduced fuel economy for no reason

3. Rough idling and stalling

4. Poor performance of the engine

5. You will face problems while changing gears

Also Read: How To Program Pcm Module

7.3 crank no start flow chart

One of the common problems of a 7.3 Powerstroke is no crank. Sometimes there will be a crank but the engine won’t start. It is a serious problem as it is one of the uncommon problems with the 7.3 Powerstroke. We are attaching a 7.3 crank no start flowchart to help you in this regard.

7.3 crank no start white smoke –What is the reason

Another common issue with the 7.3 Powerstroke is that your vehicle emits white smoke while cranking and does not start. It may happen due to different reasons. You have to check the following factors to reach the root of the problem-

1. Check the glow plugs

2. Check the glow plug relay

3. Try to check all the fuses

4. Check the UVCH

7.3 Powerstroke no crank no start

This is not a common issue of a 7.3 Powerstroke at all. If everything is fine, why should not the engine start? The most probable reason for this problem is a faulty starter. If the stock starter goes bad, you may face this problem. Sometimes, it may happen due to a faulty PCM too.

7.3 powerstroke won’t start just clicks

This problem may occur due to bad batteries, faulty starter, and solenoid. You have to pay close attention to all these factors and check them thoroughly. If you can do that, chances are you are going to get to the root of the problem. Anyway, the clicking problem mainly refers to bad batteries. That is why you should go for the batteries first. Is your 7.3 powerstroke just spinning and not engaging?

7.3 Powerstroke sudden loss of power

The main reason behind the sudden loss of power in a 7.3 Powerstroke is a bad IDM. The IDM will shut down one side of the engine if it finds out any electrical problem on that side’s injectors. As a result, you will lose power from the engine. If it is not a bad IDM, we suggest you do a proper diagnosis.

7.3 Powerstroke engine problems

If you say the 7.3 Powerstroke is a giant as an engine, you are not wrong at all. But it has got some common problems, just like every other engine. The plus here with the 7.3 Powerstroke is that you can resolve almost every problem without much hassle. They are economical too.

Let’s have a look at the problems you are likely going to face if you are going for a 7.3 Powerstroke.

1. EBPV (exhaust back pressure valve) failure

2. UVCH (under valve cover harness)

3. Lift pump failure

4. CPS (camshaft position sensor) failure

5. IPR valve problem

6. Clog in the fuel filter

7. Overheating

7.3 injector driver module symptoms

The most common symptom of an injector driver module (IDM) related problem is sudden power loss in a 7.3 Powerstroke. As the IDM shuts down one side of the engine whenever it finds any electrical problem on that particular side, you will see the loss of power. However, you may see other symptoms too. So, collectively they are-

i. No start

ii. Sudden loss of power

iii. Rough running

7.3 Powerstroke starter upgrade

In most cases of starting related problems, you will just need to change the stock starter. That is why upgrading the 7.3 Powerstroke starter is not a bad idea at all. And the aftermarket starters don’t cost much. You can make a budget under $200 to buy an aftermarket starter. It will be more than enough for you in this regard.

7.3 powerstroke cam sensor symptoms

Having a faulty cam sensor or CPS (camshaft position sensor) is not a good thing in a 7.3 Powerstroke by any means. You will see the following symptoms in case of a CPS failure-

  • Check engine light
  • Poor idling
  • Engine will crank but won’t start
  • Stalling problem
  • Rough acceleration

7.3 Powerstroke fuel pressure regulator problems

The fuel pressure regulator of a Powerstroke 7.3 is the IPR (injector pressure regulator). You will face a lot of problems if the IPR goes bad. Let’s have a look at them.

  • Car will stall even in idle
  • Engine will crank but won’t start
  • Poor gear shifting
  • Reduced performance
  • Rough idling

About cps 7.3 Powerstroke

Frankly speaking, people know the CPS of the 7.3 Powerstroke for its frequent failure. CPS, IDP, and the PCM work together to determine the amount of fuel necessary for each cylinder. As the CPS is known for its failures, you can buy a backup CPS by spending just around $25 to come out on top of any bad situation.


How do I know if my 7.3 starter is bad?

The obvious outcome of a bad starter is no start and problem while starting the car. The stock starter of a 7.3 doesn’t last much. It lasts only around 100,000 miles. However, you will see the following symptoms if the stock starter of your 7.3 Powerstroke goes bad.

  1. Grinding noise
  2. Crank time will be longer
  3. The cranks will be weak
  4. The cranks will seem weird

4.   You will hear clicking while cranking

What problems does the 7.3 Powerstroke have?

Similar to every other existing engine, 7.3 Powerstroke has also a series of problems. Don’t worry. They are not costly in most cases. The most common problems you will face in a 7.3 Powerstroke are-

  1. EBPV failure
  2. UVCH failure
  3. Lift pump failure
  4. CPS failure
  5. IDM failure

How cold will a 7.3 start?

7.3 Powerstroke is a diesel engine. That means it is more reliable in extreme weather as it can start without the help of spark plugs. Although they sometimes take help from glow plugs, they can start without the glow plugs in most situations. A 7.3 Powerstroke can start without taking help from glow plugs in even -30C. 

At what temperature should I plug in my 7.3 Powerstroke?

You can keep your 7.3 Powerstroke unplugged at -35C or even lower temperatures. To be safe or extra careful, you can plug in the engine block heater at temperatures lower than -30C. But don’t plug the heater in hotter temperatures as you may hear too much noise. Hence, the safe mark is the temperature lower than -30C.

Why is my 7.3 hard to start in cold weather?

The 7.3 Powerstroke can start without the help of glow plugs at even -35C temperature. For this reason, you should not face a hard start in cold weather as the glow plugs will be there to help the engine. But if you are in colder temperature than -35C and facing a hard start, most likely the glow plugs have gone bad. You need to replace the glow plugs to resolve the issue.


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