Everyone will think you’re a terrible driver and eventually, the car will give up starting altogether – all this because of one little part you’ve never bothered about.
A fuel pump is the device that channels the fuel from the tank through the fuel lines and into the engine. In older cars, the fuel pump is mechanical, run by the carburetor and mounted right next it.
Newer, fuel-injected cars have electric fuel pumps fitted inside the fuel tank, which helps keep the fuel tank cool and makes sure there’s a steady supply of fuel to the engine. In a modern engine, everything working in relation to the fuel pump is monitored by the car’s engine electronics to ensure that the right ratios of fuel and oxygen meet in the cylinders.
The fuel pump, whether next to the carburetor or inside the fuel tank, operates all the time the vehicle is running, so of course it will develop wear-and-tear problems over time. One way to prolong the fuel pump’s longevity is to avoid driving your car on an empty tank.
This puts massive strain on the fuel pump because it has to work harder to get fuel to through the fuel lines and to the engine. A car needs a steady supply of fuel to drive the motor, so as soon as it starts exhibiting signs of fuel pump malfunction, your car needs to be checked out. Contrary to what many car manufacturers may claim, a fuel pump isn’t likely to last the lifetime of the car, even if it’s just rolled off the assembly line.
When the time comes to replace the fuel pump, remember that it involves complicated procedures like removing the fuel tank from the engine and disconnecting the fuel lines, so it might be best to have the professionals take care of it.
In motor mechanics, few problems are as obvious as a faulty fuel pump.
You’ll know immediately that something’s amiss when your car splutters to life and then dies a few minutes later. Either that or you’ll flatten the pedal to have the car inch forward at high revs and then suddenly shoot forward. It might choose not to start at all.
Not only is driving with a faulty fuel pump damaging your car in the worst way, it also makes you a hazard on the road when you can’t get out of the starting blocks or when your engine stalls unexpectedly.
Fuel is your car’s lifeblood, and if it’s not getting to where it needs to be, you need to go to the heart of the problem – the fuel pump.