How Do You Change a Fuel Filter?


Quick Answer

Changing a fuel filter requires a moderate amount of mechanical knowledge and standard tools, although the method differs slightly depending on whether the car has an electric fuel pump or not. A car's performance will deteriorate if the filters are not changed regularly.

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Full Answer

Because fuel is involved, caution should be used when following the steps below.

  1. Safety first
  2. The engine of the car should be off and the fuse or relay removed before any work begins. Flames of any sort, such as cigarettes or lighters, should be kept away, and the work should be done in a well-ventilated area. Spills should be cleaned up quickly.
  3. Disconnect the fuel pump
  4. If the car has an electric fuel pump, remove the its fuse or relay, start the engine and wait for it to stop after it has run out of fuel. Turn off the car and remove the key. This process is not necessary if the car does not have an electric fuel pump. The fuel will spill in this situation because it cannot be drained, but the pressure will also be lower, making it easier to control.
  5. Change the pump
  6. Before removing or changing anything, observe the old filter to see exactly how it is installed and consult the vehicle's service manual. Place a rag under the old filter and disconnect it, and then install the new fuel filter. Connect everything back up, including any fuses removed earlier. Finally, remove and dispose of rags and start the car.

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