Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: I'm having fuel pump relay problems.

asked by on

Sometimes my jeep won't start. Other times it does but then when I'm driving it shuts off. The rpms go way up and the gas pedal stops working and it just kind of slows down until it dies. Usually I can put it in neutral and start it back up. Sometimes it won't start until I get out and take the fuel pump relay fuse out and put it back in. It looks like it is starting to turn black under it where it plugs into. I've already replaced it twice and it helps temporarily, but today it shut off when I was alone with no service and I really don't want that to happen again. Please tell me how to fix this??

My car has 210000 miles.

Hey there, thanks for writing in about your 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee. It sounds like you have an intermittent connection issue caused by a loose fuse holding tabs. The black you see is carbon where the voltage is jumping a gap, like a spark plug. The carbon itself is not a good conductor and will interfere with the electrical flow. The RPM increase is caused by the temporary leaning of the air/fuel mixture.

Clean the contacts and the fuse throughly with electrical cleaner, dielectric grease, or petroleum jelly. You may want to use an old toothbrush or small brass brush to lightly scrub the connector.

Sometimes a very small dental style pick can be used to slightly bend the tabs back towards each other, so the furs will fit tightly. Using a bit of dielectric grease on the fuse and holder will help with corrosion and may help keep electrical arcing from causing excess carboning.

If you are unable to bend the tabs, you could try to sandwich old fuse blades between the good fuses blades and the connector to ensure good contact. Sometimes, if you are careful, you can slightly bend the tabs on the good fuse into a V shape to help with keep the electrical connection complete. Other than that, replacement of the fuse panel would be the ideal repair solution. If you need help with this repair, I suggest having a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic, correctly diagnose the stalling issue, verify the problem, and complete the repair for you.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. I'm having fuel pump relay problems.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Radio, steering, and horn problems at lower speeds

Hello. The first thing to attempt is to find a short somewhere. Pay close attention to what conditions the radio cuts off. Attempt to recreate the issue and trace your voltage and amperage until you find the point it drops....

Q: 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited overheating

Be sure not to drive the car if it is overheating because overheating can warp the cylinder head and/or engine block causing costly damage. The most common causes of overheating include low coolant level (including that due to leaks), a...

Q: Car randomly stalls at idle and at high speeds when clutch is pressed

Hello. This is a common issue when the idle air control valve not working properly. This is a unit that regulates air intake as it is mixed with fuel at idle or low speeds prior to being injected into the...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...