The fuel pump is among the most used parts on any car. Each time the car is started and ran, the fuel pump will have to perform. There are a variety of parts that help the fuel pump to do the job that it is intended for. The fuel pump relay helps to control the amount of electrical current that is sent to the fuel pump. As the car starts up, the fuel pump relay will send the amount of electricity needed to engage the pump and to start the combustion process. Every time the car is started and operated, the fuel pump relay will have to perform to ensure the fuel pump does what it is supposed to.

Over time, the fuel pump relay can begin to show signs of wear and will have to be replaced. The fuel pump relay is designed to last the life of the car, but due to the grueling conditions it is exposed to, it will not usually last that long. Among the most commonly damaged portions of the fuel pump relay are the coil and contact points. Usually, these parts of the relay will begin to oxidize and rust as time goes by. The fuel pump relay will not usually be inspected when routine maintenance is done and will only get attention when there are issues with it. Once the issue is brought forward, it will need to be replaced by a professional mechanic.

As with any other part of a car’s fuel system, the relay will cause a lot of problems if it is not working correctly. Not having the right amount of electrical current going to your fuel pump will lead to problems that can put the car out of commission.

Here are a few of the things that you may notice when it is time to get repairs to your fuel pump relay:

  • The engine will turn when trying to be started but will not run
  • The car hesitates to crank
  • The car stalls out when you bring it to a stop
  • The car dies out after running a short distance

Replacing the fuel pump relay is a job that is best left to the professionals due to the level of difficulty involved. Trying to handle this installation process without experience can lead to more trouble and damage being done to the vehicle.

This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How Long Does a Fuel Pump Relay Last? and was authored by Valerie Johnston.


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