Thursday, May 26, 2011

How to Replace the Fuel Filter in a car?

You will need:
New fuel filter, new fuel line washers, open end wrenches, rags, eye protection. Your fuel filter is one of those engine components that may only cost $10 or $20, but can protect your engine from thousands of dollars in damage if you change it regularly. Fuel filters protect some of the very delicate parts of your engine. Carburetors and fuel injection systems can be clogged up by the tiniest of particles, so a properly functioning fuel filter is very important. If your fuel filter starts to get clogged up, the fuel trying to flow through the filter to your engine gets stuck in line.

To replace fuel filter:--Open the hood and locate the fuel filter. If the fuel filter is not in the engine compartment, follow the fuel line from the tank until the fuel filter is located. If the fuel filter has a clear case, inspect the filter element for dirt. If the fuel filter case is not see-through, remove it from the fuel line. Drain the fuel from the filter into a container and inspect the condition of the fuel. Install the new fuel filter making sure that the flow is in the correct direction. The arrow on the fuel filter is the direction of flow from the tank to the engine. Secure the lines back onto the fuel filter. If applicable, reinstall the fuel pump fuse. Start the engine and check for fuel leaks. Tests drive the vehicle to check for a rough running engine, hesitation, or lack of power. Before you begin the job of replacing your fuel filter, you must relieve the pressure in your fuel system. A fuel injection system operates under very high pressure. If you don't release this pressure before you start unscrewing fuel lines the result can be explosive. Do these before you attempt to change the fuel filter? To release the pressure in your fuel lines (and fuel filter) you'll need to locate the fuel pump fuse in the fuse box. If you don't have a fuel pump fuse, find the relay that operates the fuel pump. Once you've found the fuel pump fuse or relay, start the car. With the engine running, pull the fuse or relay out. If you pulled the right one, the engine will quickly die. Since it's using all of the pressurized fuel in the system, the fuel lines won't be pressurized when you crack the fittings on your fuel filter. Now that you've relieved the fuel pressure you can remove the old fuel filter. Changing your fuel filter will give you a little more zip under the hood, and save you money at the pump. It's easy to change a fuel filter and a lot cheaper than visiting a mechanic. If your car has fuel injection (most do these days) find two open end wrenches* that are the right size for the fuel filter fittings. They will be two different sizes in most cases. With the wrenches in place, put a rag over the fitting to separate your head from the fuel lines. This will further protect your eyes in case there is some pressure in the lines. Hold the wrench that fits on the actual filter, and turn the other wrench counter clockwise until the special bolt (part of what's called a "banjo fitting") comes out. Slide the fuel line off the bolt and set the bolt aside. Now do the same for the other side of the fuel filter. A new fuel filter is just around $10 to $20 but will greatly help in avoiding serious car damage if not replaced regularly. This task only takes a few minutes so make sure that you do this each year on an average. Make sure to note this down in your car’s regular maintenance schedule. You will also have to replace the fuel filter washers. You can locate these washers when you removed the bolts previously. There should have been a special pressure washer on top of each of the bolts. It’s either made up of copper of aluminum. Replace the old washers with new ones of the same material. Place one washer on the bolt before you slide the fuel line one at a time. Next, simply install the new fuel filter and replace back everything. Make sure to put back the fuel pump fuse or relay before starting the car. Do not over-tighten the fuel filter. Tighten to hand-strength, and let it be. Over-tightening can cause damage and fuel leakage.
Sometimes special tools are required to remove the Ford fuel lines and filters. Ford provides these tools with your vehicle or upon request.

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