What is a Fuel Pump? How does it work?

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What is a Fuel Pump? How does it work?


For the engine to run, the fuel in the fuel tank must be delivered to the engine. The part that provides the transmission is called the “fuel pump”. The fuel pump is one of the parts that changed the working principles with the development of automobile technology. Thanks to this, it is divided into several types.

What Does a Fuel Pump Do?

So what is a fuel pump? In short, the fuel pump is the part that absorbs the fuel from the tank and transmits the fuel it needs to the engine to run. However, it is called a “fuel pump” in diesel type vehicles.



Older model vehicles have a mechanical fuel pump. New vehicles have fuel pumps powered by electric motors. The fuel filter is also very important. It works with the pump and extends its life.

Therefore, it is necessary to pay attention to filter maintenance.

How Does a Fuel Pump Work?

Developing technology allowed electric motors to be used as fuel pumps. In this way, the necessity of turning the engine to get fuel was eliminated. In other words, the pump, which is activated when the ignition of the vehicle is turned on, starts to send fuel.

The first working option was a different system. After pulling the fuel from the tank mechanically with the rotational force of the engine, it was transmitted to the engine.

Mechanical Fuel Pump

It is generally used in old generation carbureted and flat diesel vehicles. Although it varies from vehicle to vehicle, it takes its movement from the camshaft or distributor shaft. In this way, the fuel starts to be pumped. Fuel is delivered from the tank to the vehicle’s engine.



Pressure is produced and when the fuel of the vehicle is completely exhausted, it is necessary to bleed. Otherwise, starting the vehicle will cause the battery to run out.

Electric Fuel Pump

With the development of automobile technology, injection engines began to be used in vehicles. The pressure of the mechanical fuel pump became insufficient. With the introduction of the electric fuel pump, the pressure problem was overcome. In addition, this fuel pump has a certain working principle.

The electric fuel pump is activated by the electric motor powered by the battery. It is usually found in the back seat of cars. When the ignition of the vehicle is turned on, it works quickly and transmits the fuel to the engine.

It has some advantages over mechanical pump. When the fuel of the vehicle with the mechanical fuel pump runs out, it will run hard even if the fuel is added. The reason for this is the formation of air in the hoses between the engine and the tank.

For the motor to work, the pump must expel air. For the pump to start, the motor must rotate. This causes the battery to be overloaded. However, in vehicles with an electric fuel pump, the situation is the opposite. When the fuel runs out, the vehicle can be continued when the fuel is added later.

Fuel Pump Failures

Pump faults are quite similar to other types of faults. But in general, if there is a fault in the pump, black smoke may come from the vehicle. In addition, if the vehicle needs to give gas continuously while idling or if it consumes more fuel than normal, there may be a malfunction in the fuel pump.

The fuel used must be of good quality so that there is no malfunction in the fuel pump. Non-quality fuels may contain sediment or be corrupted.

As a result, the pump may be damaged and the fuel pressure may drop. In addition, failure of the relay, breaks in the connection points can also cause malfunctions. In short, if the engine does not get fuel, the engine stops.

Another factor to be considered is that the fuel is kept at a quarter tank and below. When the vehicle is constantly running with a small amount of fuel, the fuel pump operates at high power continuously. As a result, malfunctions may increase.

Leakage in Fuel Pump

Commonly, vehicles are produced with gasoline and diesel. There are connections such as records, pipes, hoses, clamps and gaskets on the pumps that transmit the fuel to the fuel system. Fittings are also sealing elements apart from their function.

One of their duties is to prevent fuel leakage. However, in any malfunction that may occur in these connection areas, there will be fuel leaks. For example, in parts; Leaks occur if there are breaks, loosening, cracks or breaks in pipes/hoses.

In addition, fuels are dangerous substances because they have flammability and flaming properties due to their nature. In case of fuel leaks, the system pressure may decrease and there may be a decrease in traction.

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