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Old 28-02-2013   #1
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My Car Has A Fuel Issue

Hey Everyone,
Last week my Cinquecento Sporting decided to breakdown virtually on the tram tracks near Crystal Peaks, it was a dramatic loss of power that you get when you've ran out of fuel, funnily I had just been to the petrol station to put in fuel.

I then turned off the engine and turned it over again the car kicked up, struggled and cut out, I did it again but this time thrashed the accelerator this seemed to work. I managed to get to Halfway Tram Stop (a mile or so down the road) and it happened again.

At this point I pulled in and opened the bonnet to check for a smell of fuel or any leaks which there was none.

I then decided to risk driving the car round a busy roundabout to get to morrisons petrol station to put in more fuel, to my relief the car made it there. I put in more fuel and the car struggled to kick up though it did and I managed to get home without any problems.

The next day I decided to investigate the fuel issue by inspecting the tank which looked fine, then the filler pipe which looked ok but was covered in a small amount of fuel. I then checked the fuel pump under the inspection panel to see if it was priming when I turned on the ignition which it was, I then realised that the fuel gauge wasn't showing any reading, which was strange as it was working when I turned off the engine the day before. This can't have been the cause of the breakdown could it?

From reading some of the threads on the forum a blocked breather pipe may have caused the issue although I think that air got into the system from the fuel filler cap as this was (apart from adding more fuel) the only thing that changed from the car cutting out and running fairly normally.

Anyway as the fuel gauge now doesn't work i thought I would inspect the fuel sender, as I undid the connectors on the top of the tank there was a build up of this bluey green residue on the terminals. Is this normal? I then proceeded to remove the pump and sender from the tank to remove and inspect the sender further should I have done this as the sender will not budge from the housing at all.

Any advice is welcome regarding the issues raised in this post, sorry for the bible I just thought it would help to establish what happened so you can understand more.

Thanks
Dancento

P.S. This was my first post on the forum yay!
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Last edited by Dancento; 28-02-2013 at 18:07. Reason: Easier Reading
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Old 28-02-2013   #2
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

Quote Originally Posted by Dancento View Post

P.S. This was my first on the forum yay!
Divide up into paragraphs next time if writing a long post, much easier to read

When was the fuel filter last changed?/serviced?
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Old 28-02-2013   #3
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

Hi,

Sorry about that, will divide them properly next time.

The fuel filter was last changed in November so getting on for 5 months ago.

Thanks
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Old 28-02-2013   #4
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

nice user name!

Anyway...

My money is on the pump, but bit of testing will tell. Just because you can hear the pump priming doesn't indicate the pump is healthy. Pull the hose off the throttle body and check delivery of fuel when priming and cranking.

Dc
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Old 28-02-2013   #5
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

In fact, try a search on here, I seem to recall someone had exact same prob about a year ago straight afterta fill up. Can't remember resolution sorry.
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Old 28-02-2013   #6
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

Hey DC,

I guess great minds think alike haha, thanks for the advice can't test at the moment as I have removed both the pump and sender from the car to sort the fuel gauge problem.

When I took the elbow connectors off of the pump there was fuel in them still so wouldn't that suggest that the pump is working.

Do you think that the petrol cap could have been at fault i.e. not seated correctly so not pressurising the system?
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Old 28-02-2013   #7
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

Cap, no.
Put it back together to do your tests. Fuel in pipes is a good sign but real test is fuel under bonnet.
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Old 28-02-2013   #8
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Re: My Car Has A Fuel Issue

Just a thought -- is the fuel filter on the right way round?

Any road up, first check should be if fuel is getting to the throttle body.

Next step, is it getting past the injector (you should be able to see petrol dribbling onto the butterfly in the throttle body with the air filter removed, when the engine is cranked).

If the first but not the second, check for spark at plugs. If no spark and no fuel past the injector, replace TDC sensor.

The fuel pump does not work by pressurising the tank. That's an irrelevance. You might try with the fuel filler cap removed (but don't you dare drive the car like that).

To remove the fuel pump (etc) you need to make up a special tool -- details in the Haynes manual. You can't really expect to do fault finding, even on a relatively simple car, without one.
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