Since we bought our van I don't think we had ever run the gas tank below 1/3 of a tank. Once when we did let it get down in the 1/3 range in Southern Arizona on a chilly evening the engine misfired and lost almost all power. So we pulled of the road and looked at the engine. No major anything so I took a quick nap. After the nap the van drove fine to a gas station and we filled the tank. No more problems. Easy solution - KEEP THE TANK TOPPED OFF!
From a little research I thought it was the in tank fuel filter but dropping the tank just to replace a fuel filter seemed a real pain so we just kept it topped off. This worked well for sometime until we were driving from LA to Boulder with a very loaded down van and in Utah in 90 degree heat with 2/3 of a tank I pulled off I-15 and the van misfired and stalled. I limped the van over to a gas station, filled the tank and no problem. Ok solution really keep the tank topped off. Seems the problem is more likely a failing fuel pump then a fuel filter.
We drove the van from Boulder around Wyoming and now on hot days if the tank was getting low I noticed a high pitched wine from the back of the van. At this point I knew it's got to be the fuel pump so I order one from Rockauto with plans to replace it in Truckee.
We woke who up in my college roommate Bill's driveway and the task for the day was to replace the van fuel pump. We went to get Bills assistance changing the fuel pump since the pump and fuel filter are inside the van's 36 gallon gas tank.
I needed Bill's help so we started the project by helping Bill finish his house daddy responsibilities scrubbing the tub, vacuuming, and cleaning rooms. With Anja and Ken helping Bill was quickly done with the honeydo list and helped Ken get to the van project. First task was to try to drain the 30 gallons of gas out of the tank and then unbolt the support straps.
The fuel tank still had about 10 gallons of gas in it so we used a floor jack to lower it slowly.
Then pound out the lock ring of the fuel pump.
For some reason the new pump did not come with a pull so we had to reuse the old ones.
New pump installed in the tank.