Guide to Changing the Fuel Filter


Things needed:

  • New fuel filter
  • New fuel line washers
  • Rags
  • Open end wrenches
  • Eye protection

A fuel filter is one of the part of engine that will cost as less as twenty dollars but will protect the engine from damage worth thousands of dollars if it is changed regularly. A fuel filter protects some of the very sensitive components of the engine. Tiny particles can block the carburetors and fuel injection systems that is why a proper fuel filter is very vital. If the fuel filter gets blocked, it means that the fuel flow to the engine is stuck.

Fuel Filter

It doesn’t take too long to change the fuel filter and it has to be replaced only once a year in an average vehicle. Fuel filter replacement is part of car’s regular maintenance program.

IMPORTANT: It is important to do the fuel system pressure release step otherwise it can result in damage and other injuries.

Safety Step – Relieving Fuel System Pressure

Following are the safety measures before starting;

  • There must be protective gear for the eyes
  • The engine must be cool
  • The fuel system pressure has to be relieved

Before replacing the fuel filter, the pressure in the fuel system must be relieved. There is a very high pressure which operates the fuel injection system. If this pressure is not released before unscrewing the fuel lines, the result can be very dangerous in a form of explosion. This must be done before changing the fuel filter.

Fuel Relay

The fuel pump fuse in the fuse box has to be located first before releasing the pressure in the fuel lines and the fuel filter. If there is no fuel pump fuse, the operating relay of the fuel pump has to be located. When the relay has been located, the vehicle should be started. While the engine is start and running, the relay or fuse can be pulled out. The engine will die instantly if the right one is pulled. As it is using all the system’s pressurized fuel, the fuel line will not be pressurized when the fittings on the fuel filter are cracked.

Disconnect the fuel lines from the fuel filter

Once the fuel pressure is relieved, the old fuel filter can be removed. If it is not done yet, the previous step must be done. It can be very dangerous.

Disconnect Fuel Lines

If the car has fuel injection system, the right size wrenches would have to be used, a rag has to be placed over the head for separating from the fuel lines. This will help in further protecting the eyes if there is any pressure in the lines.

A wrench that fits the actual filter has to be held and the other wrench has to be turned anti clock wise until the special blot comes off. The fuel line can be moved off the bolt and the bolt can be put aside. The process can be done for the other side of the fuel filter.

Removing the old fuel filter

When the fuel lines are disconnected from the fuel filter, the old fuel filter can be easily removed from the vehicle. Many are held by a clamp that can be released with the help of a flat head screw driver.

Change Fuel Filter

The old fuel filter has to be removed very carefully because it may be probably full of gas.

Changing the fuel filter washers

Fuel Filter Washers

The special fuel line bolts that were carefully put aside earlier, they are typically made up of either aluminum or copper, sitting on them will be a special washer pressure. The old washers have to be removed and they have to be replaced with new matching washers. One side of the washers is typically different from the other side of the fuel filter. One washer has to be placed on the bolt before sliding on the fuel line and moving to the other.

Installing the new fuel filter

Install New Fuel Filter

The procedure of installing a new fuel filter is opposite from the procedure of removing it. One must not forget to put back the relay or fuel pump fuse before trying to start the vehicle. Finally the fuel filter has been changed; one can have a peace of mind and enjoy a better gas mileage.

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