Recall issued for fuel regulator. "On certain passenger vehicles equipped with 3800 V6 engines and certain Delphi fuel pressure regulators, the regulators have a much higher than usual rate of fuel leaks. A leak can allow fuel to enter the intake manifold through a vacuum line. If the engine does not start when cranked, the fuel from the leaking regulator and a mistimed spark can cause a backfire...The backfire can rupture the intake manifold. The rupture of the intake manifold can displace a fuel line, pulling an injector out of place, and causing a fuel leak and possible fire.
Here's what happened--A loud pop was heard right after turning key, and flames started shooting out of engine. Fire was put out quickly. Fire left a large crater in the center top rear of the engine. Car had very occasionally experienced small backfires when starting for a couple of months prior to this happening. Bought the car used a little over a year before this happened.
Went online before scrapping car and found the recall notice (#48585) and called GM. Per instructions, had car towed to local Buick dealer for inspection to see if fire was related to recall. Dealer says "Fuel regulator is in from of engine and fire was in rear, so not the problem. Not covered under recall."
I'm not a mechanic, but I've puttered with vehicles, appliances, and other things enough to know that my reasoning of a problem is usually fairly accurate. Am I mistaken in believing that a fire caused by this problem is most likely to occur on top of the engine, where/near where the intake manifold is located, not at the front of the engine where the fuel pressure regulator is located?
Dealer also says they tested the fuel pressure regulator and it was fine--correct pressure. Could faulty pressure be intermittent and not show a problem with a single time testing? Is testing even accurate when the top of the engine, including intake manifold is gone due to the fire?
Thanks for helping with this question.