The fuel that resides in your gas tank is used to power your vehicle and to supply the material needed for the combustion process. Making sure that the gas in the tank stays at the right consistency is important in the running of the vehicle. The job of the gas cap is to make sure that no trash or water gets into the fuel supply through the filler neck. The gas cap screws into the top of the filler neck and has a seal that helps to keep the trash out. The gas cap is used all of the time, which means that you will have to get the cap replaced eventually.

The gas cap can last up to 50,000 miles and in some cases longer if it is properly cared for. Not having this type of protection in regards to the gas supply in a car can lead to a variety of different issues. If the gas cap lets trash and dirt in the gas supply, then it will usually result in the fuel filter being clogged. A bad fuel filter will lead to a restriction in the flow of gas, which means that it will be very hard for the car to run normally.

The best way to detect damage with a gas cap is by taking the time to inspect it on a regular basis. Usually, you will be able to tell if the gas cap is damaged and getting it fixed in a hurry can reduce the damage it may do. There are a number of different types of gas caps out there and selecting the right replacement will take some time and effort on your part.

When a gas cap is in need of replacement, here are some of the things that you may notice:

  • The Check Engine Light is on
  • The seal on the gas cap is visibly damaged
  • The threads on the gas cap are worn or stripped out
  • The gas cap has been lost

Putting a new gas cap on a car will help to reduce the amount of trash that is allowed to get into your fuel supply. Getting a professional to offer advice regarding what type of gas cap to get can reduce the chance for error.

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


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