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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all. Daughter's 2005 Prius, 16K mi. 95 degrees, no precip. Running perfectly down road, service light comes on, little while later car dead on street. 12 volt systems fine, lights on, radio and such OK. After chatting with dealer, added 2 gal of gas, just in case. Crank it. No luck. Dealer sends tow truck, they go over it, say the fuel system bone dry. Hmmm. Car sits at dealer. They add 2 more gallons of gas. Starts and runs fine.

Is there any reason the fuel pump would not move gas in tank to carb area? Is the initial 2 gal in tank not enough? How about air bubble in line? Vapor lock? ANY suggestions?


Also, I REALLY want a way to plug it in to my solar/windmill system.

thanks.
 

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Well, first it depends when they checked the fuel line. If they checked after the tow without attempting to fire it up first, the line may dry up.

There is a safety that if an accident occurs that fires the airbags, or that ICE doesn't start in a timely manner, then the fuel pump will be shut off. Normally powering off and on the car will reset this.

What code was detected from the car? What was the gas guage reading at the time? If the car is an early 2005, does it qualify for SSC-50P, and if so, had it been done? There were issues with some 2004s and 2005s (not as much with 2005) where ICE did not start up fast enough to satisfy the ECUs and would trip a trouble code. If at the same time the tank was low, it would trip an 'out of gas' code.

However, it is possible that there was an electrical problem, either with the relay that turns on the power to the fuel pump, or the fuel pump itself. If the fuel line had stayed dry, the tech should have taken a voltage reading across the fuel pump leads while trying to start the ICE. If voltage gets there, but no fuel comes out of the tank, then the fuel tank would need to be replaced. The fuel pump is sealed in the tank along with the fuel filter and cannot be replaced separately.
 

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Stan Bringer said:
What?? The fuel filter is hidden away inside the fuel tank? How do you service it? Replace the tank??

Stan
Since DanMan32 said that's true, I am starting to worry. It sounds expensive if you clog a fuel filter. Is there any way to "prefilter" the gas before you put it in the tank to help keep things clean?

It also sounds like you should always keep the tank filled to avoid getting rust in the tank.
 

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I don't think I have heard of anyone having a clogged filter. I know I haven't in all the years I owned cars. I had a bad fuel pump in a 1988 Accord that I bought 5 years old from my boss.

I suppose one could reverse the fuel pump with a cleaner and then try and clean out the tank. I didn't see a drain plug for the tank though. That would have helped in cleaning it out if it did get clogged. However you might be able to drain the fuel and debris from the filler tube hole once you remove the filler tube and then the tank.

Looking more closely at the fuel delivery system, the service department should have followed more closely to the repair manual. There's detailed steps to check the fuel pump and fuel delivery all the way to the injectors.
 

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Prefiltering Gasoline

Most gas pumps have inline filters right before the fill hose. If you have ever seen the pump covers off, most of them have a regular engine oil filter installed right where the hose connects to the pump. Standard Oil used to have inline filters right before the pump handle, and used this as a marketing point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The 3 gallon comment !!!

Thanks to all who replied.

The 3 gallon item from [email protected] is most interesting, as I only a two gal gas can was used.

I have an appt with the Prius tech who looked at das machinen later this week for answers to Ken's pointed questions.
 

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And if by very small chance the relay that's supposed to shut off the fuel pump when the tank is empty failed and the pump is "kaput" it really isn't all that big a deal for the dealer to drop the tank and replace the pump. That's why a plate wasn't placed above the pump in the cars floor. This seems to be the standard in the industry. I've a friend whose fuel pump became noisy and the dealer told him to drive the car until he was down to just a couple gallons of gas and then come in for a pump change. Not that very labor intensive.
 

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For whatever it's worth, I'm pretty sure I remember reading in the 2006 Owner's Manual that it recommends filling up when the fuel gauge reaches 25%. I'm only on my fourth tank so far and I've refilled at around 400+ miles each time (~ 7 gallons)
 
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