Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My gas gauge is doing a funny little dance.

asked by on

As I was driving along, my gas gauge began to rapidly and randomly jump between empty and full. I know the car has nearly a full tank, and sometimes the gauge would stop in empty,while other times it would say the tank was full. What could be going on?

My car has 180000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: The fuel pumps are all inclusive on what th...

The fuel pumps are all inclusive on what they call a fuel module or assembly. These modules include a float (quite like the float on your toilet) that tells the computer and your dashboard where the fuel level is at.

The issue may be with the pump’s float, with the sensor on the float, the instrument cluster for your dash board, or the wiring between the two. If you have never replaced the fuel pump, it may be time. If the float is wearing down, the rest of the components are getting close. Are any other parts of the dashboard acting funny? If not, the pump is likely the culprit. Be sure to have a professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, take a look and replace the fuel pump.

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!

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: Car starts then dies

A fuel pump not pumping or a clogged fuel may be the problem. The fuel pumps in this year are problematic using ethanol blended fuels. The fuel is known to damage the pumps and cause the fuel feed hose to...

Q: Truck idling high

Hi there. You may need to have the carburetor adjusted or you have a binding throttle high idle choke linkage. A major vacuum leak can be something that can lead to having a high idling vehicle. A primary cause for...

Q: The car occasionally has startup problems

You would most likely have a problem with the anti-theft module, it's not getting deactivated. The module is the most common failure and would need to be diagnosed and repaired at a dealer or a shop with the special diagnostic...

Related articles

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...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.