Mechanics

FUEL SYSTEM/ FUEL PUMP

2001 Chevrolet Cavalier • 150,000 miles

My car ran out of gas yesterday and I haven't been able to get it started since. After putting in a gallon sputter and almost start but not stay running (The same thing happened about 2 months ago- it was difficult, but it did finally start after a few tries.). So we added almost 2 more gallons and still nothing. Since then we've tried again several times, and now it doesn't even sputter like it wants to start like it did in the beginning. The engine was not flooded and the battery is good. When I turn on the ignition you can hear a humming sound on the driver side-I'm told thats the fuel pump but don't know if it's good/bad. I can't afford to replace the fuel pump only to have it still not start. We're going to check the fuses, relays, and the fuel filter first. I'd be grateful for any advice you can offer. Thanks.
Also, I've read about several people having this same problem and getting their car to start by adding 5 gallons of gas. There does seem to be a noticeable difference in how the car ran with a lot of fuel vs. A little. And starting it after running out of gas the last time was easier using more. Have you heard of this working? Thanks again!
Rachel
Avatar
Sides
September 22, 2013.




You will need to actually test the fuel pressure, do this first.

Mhpautos
Sep 23, 2013.
In tank fuel pumps are cooled and lubricated by the fuel in the tank. When you run a car out of gas or very low, it pumps a lot of air through the pump which overheats it and causes some severe wear and many times, failure when they cool off.
You will need to use a fuel pressure gauge to verify this

Wrenchtech
Sep 23, 2013.
Thank you for your quick responses. One important thing I did not mention is that after we put gas in it and tried to start it many times, my boyfriend took the fuel line off the front of the engine and noted that there wasn't any gas flowing to it. Does this leave any other possibilities or does it just narrow it down to the fuel pump? Also, could you specify how the egr valves affect this?
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Tiny
Sides
Sep 23, 2013.
EGR has no connection. It strongly points toward a fuel pump but we would also verify power and ground at the pump just to be sure.

Wrenchtech
Sep 23, 2013.

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