by Lee Wyatt
(last updated May 25, 2010)
Arguably, the single most important part of any vehicle is the fuel pump. When this part goes bad, no matter what else you may have working on your car, the vehicle is going to quickly starve of gasoline and no longer be able to go anywhere. While the project is a moderately challenging one, replacing a fuel pump is a project that anyone, not only the professionals, can undertake. That being said, there are a few things that you should gather together before you begin.
Once you have gathered together all of your materials and tools, you are almost ready to begin. All that you need to do now, is ensure that you are working in an area that is well ventilated and free from danger of sparks. Gasoline fumes are highly flammable, and as such the utmost caution needs to be used when working with them, hence the fire extinguisher.
Next, if you have an electric fuel pump, then you are going to need to release the pressure that is in the lines. To do this, you simply locate the fuel pump fuse in your fuse box, and while the engine is running pull the fuse out. This allows the engine to die using the last of the fuel that was pressurized in the line, while also cutting the power to the pump.
Now, after you have relieved the pressurized lines, you are ready to remove the pump itself. The pump should be enclosed in a black insulating sleeve and mounted directly under the car, held in place with only a couple of bolts. Disconnect those bolts, and allow the pump to drop down a few inches. You are not going to be able to remove the pump until you have completely disconnected everything. Prior to disconnecting anything though, you should mark everything with color coded tabs of masking tape and colored markers, while marking the new fuel pump with corresponding tags. This is going to help ensure that you hook everything up properly which is going to save time in the long run.
Once you have marked everything, proceed with disconnecting the fuel lines. Place your fuel catch under the pump to help limit the mess and fire hazard. Now, simply use a small screwdriver to help remove the hairpin clamps if necessary. Place all connecter clamps in one location, to avoid them getting lost or misplaced. You are now ready to begin the final step in removing the fuel pump. You now need to disconnect all the wires that are attached to the pump. Again, before you disconnect any of these wires, make sure that you have marked them so that you can easily tell where everything is supposed to go. After you have disconnected all the wires, go ahead and remove the pump, and place it in the fuel catch to drain.
Finally, once you have removed the pump, you can start installing the replacement. To do this, all that you need to do is the reverse of the removal. This is where all the marked tags are going to come in real handy. Congratulations, you have now completed the replacement process.
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