Can You Tell If Your Fuel Pump Is Going Bad?

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When you are on the job, you can’t afford to be slowed by a broken piece of equipment. Unfortunately, those things usually happen without warning – unless you know what signs to look for.

Use this symptom checklist along with your regular maintenance routine schedule to make sure you have a heads up that your fuel pump is about to go down.

Check your fuel usage

Knowing how long a full tank will last you is really important, especially if the job site is in a remote location.

If you are going through fuel faster than you should be, it could be your first sign that a fuel pump problem is on the horizon. When the gas-guzzling happens fast instead of gradually you’ve passed the potential problem stage and gone straight to emergency.

No noise? Could mean big problems

If you can’t hear the fuel pump engaging when you try to start the engine, or it just won’t start at all, you could have a pump issue.

If the engine refuses to start, check the battery first. However, if you stopped hearing the familiar motor sound of the fuel pump prior to that, you’re most likely looking at a fuel pump problem. The best bet is to stop and check things out as soon as you notice the lack of noise.

From smooth sailing to a bumpy ride

Sputtering or misfiring is another sign that the fuel pump may be on its way out. When the pump is not providing fuel consistently you will experience sputtering and may even find that the engine dies while the machine is still in motion. It’s similar to running out of a tank of gas. So if your fuel gauge shows full but your work day is coming to a halt, the fuel pump is probably to blame.

Abrupt stops

When you are cruising along and then your speed starts to drop, you may have a fuel pump problem. You could also experience a slower rate of acceleration.

This is a sure sign that the fuel pump can’t supply the fuel fast enough to keep up. Check your fuel filter to make sure it’s not clogged and restricting flow. If the problem persists you’ll want to check your fuel pump as soon as you can.

Its Getting Hot In Here

A fuel pump emergency can be stopped by paying attention to the temperature gauge. When the pump starts to fail it causes the heat rise, which in turn causes the car to stall out. Of course, the fuel pump isn’t the only reason you’re likely to see a spike in the temperature gauge, but when combined with other symptoms it warrants a look.

Keep it clean

Dirty fuel is a huge culprit to failing fuel systems. This culprit is actually one that can be contained with a little help from Parker filtration products. Whether you are fighting against particles and debris or water getting into your fuel supply, there is a filtration system designed to help.

When troubleshooting problems like this it’s important to remember that different mechanical malfunctions can exhibit similar symptoms. For instance:

  • if you are having trouble getting the engine started or keeping it running, it could point to a problem with the starter or battery
  • if you’re having trouble keeping the engine running, but only when pulling a heavy load, it could indicate an issue with the fuel lines or the fuel regulator

A fuel pressure gauge can help point you in the right direction when trying to diagnose a fuel issue. If the readings are good, it’s pretty safe to say the symptoms you are experiencing are related to something else. E

ither way, you’ll be glad you added this checklist to your troubleshooting routine. There’s nothing better than stopping a problem before it really gets started.