How Long Does a Fuel Filter Last?

The fuel filter in your vehicle helps deliver clean gasoline to your vehicle's engine while also protecting the fuel injectors. Over time, though, a fuel filter can become clogged, letting less and less fuel through to the engine until it eventually stops working altogether.

The only way that a car will be able to crank and run properly is by having the right amount of gas. Making sure that each of the components of the fuel system are working properly should be one of the top concerns that a car owner has. Among the most important and commonly overlooked parts of the fuel system is the fuel filter. This filter helps to filter out both the moisture and the trash that may get into the vehicle’s fuel system. The fuel filter on your vehicle is used every time you crank and drive the automobile.

When should you have the fuel filter replaced?

The rule of thumb when replacing a fuel filter on an older model car is at least every 2 years or 30,000 miles. On newer models, this interval can run longer. The best way to tell if your fuel filter needs replacing is to have the mechanic do a fuel pressure test. This lets the mechanic know how much PSI the fuel pump is generating at the fuel rail, with a faulty fuel filter reducing the pressure produced. The normal amount of pressure for a fuel-injected vehicle runs around 30 to 60 PSI.

Failing to get this filter replaced when it needs it will lead to a large degree of instability for your vehicle. Just like any other filter on a vehicle, eventually the fuel filter will become clogged and unable to do the job it was intended for. The location of the fuel filter depends on the type of vehicle. Some vehicles have fuel filters that are mount in the fuel line, while some have them in the fuel tank. Regardless of where your fuel filter is located, keeping an eye out for signs that it needs to be replaced is important in keeping your vehicle reliable.

Driving a car that has a bad fuel filter can lead to you being broke down on the side of the road. Usually, there will be a number of warning signs when the fuel filter has to be replaced. Failing to notice and act when these warning signs surface can lead to a number of different issues.

Symptoms of a faulty fuel filter

After determining that your vehicle has a faulty fuel filter, have a mechanic replace it. You should also check with the mechanic to determine the best fuel filter to use for your vehicle. Some of the symptoms associated with a faulty fuel filter include:

  • An engine dying or sputtering while driving, especially when accelerating
  • A rough idling engine
  • The car does not have the power it did
  • The car will not start
  • Very poor gas mileage
  • The Check Engine Light is on
  • The car will not stay cranked

At this point, ask a mechanic to change out your old filter. The ease of this process depends on where the fuel filter is located in your vehicle. On older models, the fuel filter lies between the gas tank and the engine. The easiest way to find it is to follow the fuel supply line. Most often, the filter is attached to the vehicle firewall or underneath the back of the vehicle, close to the fuel tank. Modern vehicles usually have the fuel filter inside the fuel tank and are harder to replace.

A bad fuel filter can be very bad for your engine and may render your vehicle unusable. A professional mechanic will be able to replace your fuel filter without a problem.


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Chris

22 years of experience
2223 reviews
Chris
22 years of experience
Ram 2500 L6-6.7L Turbo Diesel - Fuel Filter - Orange, California
Chris arrived on time and was very professional, courteous and very knowledgeable. I had a large list of services because I just bought a used 16 Ram 2500 Diesel 4x4 with 30K miles and was petrified to see what he was going to pull up on his tablet. Chris went over the entire truck and took that list and cut it in half, saving me hundreds of dollars, literally! We ended up performing half of what was scheduled and I was extremely happy with his suggestions and professionalism. This was a great experience and I will definitely be using Chris in the future for all of our vehicles.
Toyota 4Runner - Fuel Filter - San Clemente, California
Showed up at approx 1230p fora 7p appt which worked out well for me. Had a different part that fixed the issue of the fuel filter. He was definitely a take care of business get it done and move on which I had no problem with especially since he fixed the current problem. Thank you. I liked the YM experience

Levi

9 years of experience
54 reviews
Levi
9 years of experience
Mercury Grand Marquis V8-4.6L - Fuel Filter - Edmond, Oklahoma
Levi arrived on time, worked during cold conditions and did an excellent job. Levi has helped us before. We like his attitude and his work. He is an outstanding mechanic.
Mercury Sable - Fuel Filter - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
He let me know that he was going to be there earlier than expected, which was awesome, and he took care of the problem and didn’t try and up sell any work that some garage mechanics do. Will definitely be using him again for all our car needs.

Anton

15 years of experience
11 reviews
Anton
15 years of experience
Ford Excursion V10-6.8L - Fuel Filter - Staten Island, New York
Fantastic mechanic and person! Very knowledgeable. Works fast and efficiently. I highly recommend hiring him for any job you may have!

Elias

14 years of experience
113 reviews
Elias
14 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz S430 V8-4.3L - Fuel Filter Replacement - Bayonne, New Jersey
My first mechanic was a bust, but this guy turned the situation around because he actually knew what he was doing. 5 stars all around, great guy - knows his stuff.

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