Your engine cannot run without a fuel pump. The pump uses vacuum pressure to pull gasoline from the tank and push it into the engine to help the spark plugs and wires ignite it and keep it running. If you notice your engine acting funny and think it could be the spark plugs, think again. East Coast EuroWerks explains it might be the fuel pump. Here are seven signs your pump is bad.
Your European automobile was meant to be driven fast and if your engine sputters at these high speeds your pump might not be getting enough fuel into the engine. Basically, sputters suggest there isn’t a constant fuel stream to the engine at the required pressure, which is the pump’s responsibility.
If your vehicle has been overheating and stalling lately the fuel pump could be to blame. It’s hard to determine that your fuel pump is going bad because many of the symptoms are suggestive of other things, such as the radiator in this case. Still, a bad pump can overheat the engine.
The fuel pump adjusts the fuel pressure into the engine based on how fast or slow you drive. A failing pump cannot adjust this pressure. This means an incorrect amount of fuel is pushed into the engine and causes the problems discussed above and below. A mechanic can check your fuel pressure.
If the fuel pressure to the engine is too low, you’ll notice a lag in your engine response. This is particularly true when you are going up a steep hill or have your vehicle overloaded with people or cargo. Low fuel pressure does not give the engine enough power to handle stress.
If the fuel pressure is too high, your vehicle will surge forward even though you didn’t press down on the gas. The pump motor could be failing and sending too much gas to the engine in bursts. You’ll notice these bursts via engine surges while you’re driving along.
The fuel pump is partly responsible for your vehicle’s fuel efficiency. It sends just the right amount of gas to the engine as you speed up and slow down. If your fuel pump is faulty, it will not control the gas usage as it should and you’ll notice your gas mileage going down the tank. Sorry. Pun intended.
It’s Dead, Jim
Finally, if your pump has died your engine has died. As mentioned above, your engine cannot start without the pump because it isn’t getting any gas. Signs your engine’s failure to start is fuel-pump related including it turning over but not catching.