2003 Ford Expedition, No Run, No Fuel Pump Operation, Code P0231

This 2003 Ford Expedition came in with a no run condition. A quick check found no fuel pressure and a code P0231 (low voltage on fuel pump monitor circuit). I decided to go to the interior fuse box, where my wiring diagrams, stated the fuel pump relay and fuse are located. There are a couple of covers that have to be removed.

Pull the edge loose at the firewall end and pivot the cover back.

There is a black plastic cover that has to be pulled off of the actual fuse box.


Since my wiring diagrams stated the relay was located in the fuse box, but did not give a specific position, I looked in the owners manual for more info. No luck there. I did some reading and found that there are five internal, non serviceable relays inside the fuse block. My next test would involve locating the output circuit  from the relay.  The wiring diagrams stated that the fuel pump relay output wire was dark green/yellow and it was located in cavity 3 of connector C270K. I placed a jumper wire into the cavity to backprobe the circuit, no volts. Since my backprobe wire is part of a fused jumper wire, I connected battery voltage to the circuit and started the vehicle. This told me that the fuel pump, inertia switch and related wiring were all okay.

I checked fuse #34 with the key on and it had power and was good so that eliminated a faulty pcm relay and related wiring. The next step was to locate the light blue/orange wire in cavity #12 of the C270B connector. It is in the lower right hand corner of the twelve cavity connector just below the connector that I am backprobing in the picture above. When the ignition is turned on the reading was near zero volts and after a few seconds it went to battery voltage. This told me that the pcm was using a ground to energize the fuel pump relay coil. With all of this testing I knew without a doubt that the fuel pump relay that is part of the interior fuse box was faulty.

Disconnect the battery first before removing the fuse block. There is a battery feed cable that also has to be disconnected on the rear edge of the fuse box. It is located under a cover. I have pictures of that at the end of this post. There is only one bolt that holds this fuse block in place.

I unplugged all of the wiring. There are connectors on the top where testing was done and on the edge. Above and below the mounting bolt.

In the rear.

This connector has a slide mechanism. I have my finger in the pull handle for it.

The fuse block removed from the vehicle. You can see the battery terminal post on the lower left edge.

I carefully removed all fuses and relays from the fuse block and laid them out in the order removed.

I took the back cover off of the fuse block and started disassembling it.

Once I had it opened it was easy to see the damage. Slightly right of center.

The damage was even easier to see from the relay side of the board. I feel fairly confident that if this problem would have been caught soon enough, the solder joint could have been repaired or a new relay installed (if one could have been located).

The old fuse block on the left and the new one on the right.

I plugged everything back in and bolted the fuse block in place.

This is the end of the battery cable that I referred to earlier.

The cover for the battery stud on the fuse block.

I put all of the covers back on, cleared the codes and test drove the vehicle. This one is done.

This repair will generally apply to Ford and Lincoln full sized trucks and suv’s in the same years//body style. Check diagrams and component locators before jumping any circuits, as I did.

113 discussions on “2003 Ford Expedition, No Run, No Fuel Pump Operation, Code P0231”

  1. In the 8th image with the sentence “This connector has a slide mechanism. I have my finger in the pull handle for it.” above it, what does that connector control? Someone broke into my car, pulled the fuse box down, disconnected all the wire clusters and cut all the wires going into the slide connector. I reconnected all the other wire clusters and have power, but the vehicle won’t start, the AC and the radio don’t power on. There may more things that don’t work, but I didn’t have time to check everything because I had to go back to work

    1. I don’t know exactly what the wiring in that connector controls but it sounds like you have a general idea already. It could be researched on the Ford Service Information website but Ford charges a fee and it might take a few hours to identify all circuits in that connector. The easiest thing to do is to splice the wires back together one at a time. Each wire likely has a distinct size and color pattern.

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