Piece By Piece: Fuel Pump Components Explained

electric diesel fuel lift pumpDiesel engines are estimated to have a 45 MPG highway mileage rating, making them the perfect choice for long- and heavy-haul trucking companies. Though there are a number of components that work together to achieve this stellar rating, one of the most important is the electric diesel fuel lift pumps — after all, you wouldn’t get very far if fuel didn’t make it to the engine.

However, diesel fuel systems are comprised of many pieces: the electric diesel fuel lift pump does not operate singularly, but rather in tandem with other (also very important) components. Let’s take a look at three of them.

  • Fuel Filter: Diesel fuel filters are responsible for removing any dirt, rust, or debris particles from the fuel before it enters the engine. Since even the tiniest piece of detritus can cause significant damage should it get into the powerful yet delicate structure of the diesel engine, it’s vital that your filter is not damaged itself. If your filter is old, it may become easily clogged: when this happens, you run the risk of fuel pump failure because the pump is forced to work much harder to force fuel through it.
  • Fuel Tank: Rust and dirt are an engine’s worst enemy. Though your fuel filter should stop these materials from getting into your engine, it’s not always a guarantee. If your fuel tank is badly rusted or contaminated with dirt, you may end up clogging your filter as larger granulations build up — then, you’ve got a repeat of the problem mentioned above. Physical damage to the tank itself, such as dents or distortions, can restrict fuel entry into the pump or fuel exist from the pressure regulator, which inherently affects efficiency and forces your engine to push harder.
  • Fuel Pressure Regulator: If the diesel fuel pressure regulator fails, fuel pump performance suffers. The pressure regulator will stick closed or the return line will become restricted, which will cause the fuel pump to operate at maximum fuel pressure. Again, you really don’t want your vehicle to be operating at such a high-pressure, extra force capacity because it can cause damage.

If any of these systems fail, engine efficiency suffers. As a result, it’s crucial to check the state of each during yearly inspections; When it comes to your diesel vehicle, it’s best not to skimp.
<

diesel fuel pump

How To Troubleshoot Common Issues With Diesel Fuel Pumps

When your vehicle has an issue with fuel delivery, the rest of it will undoubtedly be compromised. Maintaining the integrity of your vehicle’s diesel fuel pump is essential to maintaining the integrity of your entire vehicle. With as many as 50 different types of diesel engines on the market, knowing the ins and outs of diesel fuel pumps is important. Know these common issues and never experience detrimental vehicle failure.

 

Dirty Fuel

 

The best diesel fuel pump injector is a clean diesel fuel pump injector. As residue builds up in the diesel fuel supply system, a surprising amount of grease, grime, and gunk clog up the entire pump. The area where the fuel leaves the injector and enters the combustion chamber, known as the spray tip, is especially prone to seeing the backed-up residue. This clogged tip is often the issue when an engine sputters or hesitates during acceleration. Be sure to use high-quality diesel fuel to prevent this build up as much as you possibly can.

 

Improper Injection Timing

 

Defective parts of the fuel injector pump can negatively affect the timing of the fuel transfer process. This typically happens when the injector pump’s O-rings or ball seats are defective themselves. While this is a fairly common glitch in diesel fuel pumps, it typically requires an entire rebuild or replacement to fix the defective parts.

 

Low Fuel Tank Level

 

Diesel fuel pumps need a good amount of fuel inside of them to run smoothly. The fuel serves as a lubricant for the fuel pump bearings. When you run your vehicle with a fuel tank that is as close to empty as possible, you’re not providing your pump with much lubrication and it will eventually destroy the pump. When a lack of fuel wears out the fuel pump bearings, the injectors do not receive the fuel at the pressurized level they should be.

 

Debris Inside Injector

 

Small visitors to the inside of injectors, like pieces of dust and debris, can clog the entire injector. A tiny object could also leave the injector open at all times. Injectors need to close for optimal operation, and when they can’t the cylinder performance is compromised.

 

Keep an eye out for issues like this with your fuel lift pumps. When you catch issues early, you can work toward a solution more quickly.

fuel pump manufacturers

3 Factors To Consider When Choosing A Fuel Pump

If you have the vehicular knowledge necessary to pick and choose between individual parts, you’ll know the importance of the fuel lift pump. Often located within the fuel tank, different diesel fuel pumps provide different outcomes in terms of efficiency and power. There are a number of fuel pump manufacturers out there, so the journey to the perfect one may end up being more difficult than you expected. If you’re trying to find the right diesel fuel lift pump for your vehicle, consider the following three factors.

 

  • Horsepower: Your engine’s horsepower (hp) determines how much fuel flow is required to support it. As horsepower increases, so too does the volume of fuel needed to support that power. Focusing on the 10hp per gallon (or 2.64hp per liter) can help you estimate the volume to power ratio in your vehicle. However, you can only actually know your gallon per horsepower ratio if you take into account the fuel pressure required for your engine.

 

  • Fuel Pressure: Different engines require different fuel pressures. Fuel pressure has a large effect on how much flow a pump can produce, so it’s vital that you know what your engine’s maximum pressure is. Fuel pumps flow at their highest volume when there is no pressure (known as free flow), but as the pressure increases, the flow decreases. Every pump has a different flow volume at a given pressure, so taking a look at a flow chart of the pump you decide to buy can make the process a lot easier.

 

  • Voltage: Fuel pumps have different flow rates at different voltages. When the voltage increases, the speed of the pump will also increase, which then increases its flow at any given pressure. Most cars produce around 13.5 volts when running. However, if yours does not produce 13.5 volts, you can examine the flow ratings of a pump at 12 volts instead to be safe.

 

A single tank of gas can power a diesel engine between 400 and 800 miles; to get the most out of your tank, you must have a fuel pump that is optimized for your vehicle. If you’re able to take into account the three factors described above, you should have no problem sorting through all the fuel pump manufacturers and getting the most bang for your gasoline-buck.

diesel fuel lift pump

Mechanical vs Electric Fuel Pumps: Which Is The Right Option For You?

Nobody ever said the mechanics of a car were easy to understand. Unless you were born with a ratchet in one hand and a wrench in the other, we’re guessing the complexity of diesel fuel lift pumps and diesel filtration systems go right over your head. And, if that’s the case, how are you ever going to know what type of diesel fuel lift pump — mechanical or electric — is best for you and your vehicle? Easy: we’re going to explain both of them to you!

 

The Minutiae of Mechanical Pumps

Mechanical diesel fuel pumps have been around for decades, though the switch to electric everything these days has seen them becoming less and less popular. The work mainly on older engines with carburetors: the pump siphons fuel from the gas tank and pushes it to the carburetor when the engine is cranking or running. Though they won’t quite stand up to boosted applications or engines running nitrous with higher horsepower ratings, they are a convenient and affordable choice for those who simply use their vehicles to get from point A to point B. They’re quiet, require minimal effort to install, and (since they aren’t electric, obviously) have no wiring to muck around with or worry about. If you want to push your engine or give it a little extra kick, however, electric fuel pumps are the way to go.

 

The Excitement of Electric Pumps

For vehicles that really purr, pushing the limits and efficiency of your engine, electric pumps are essential. They’re needed in situations where higher fuel pressures are required (like boosted applications, nitrous, and fuel injection — the latter begins at 30,000 PSI). Sometimes, mechanical pumps simply won’t fit in your car, forcing you to go electric instead; however, they offer a wide variety of flow rates and pressure outputs, making them incredibly versatile and able to work well in many vehicles. Most electric fuel pumps require a 12 volt circuit with a relay that gives you multiple shut-off options, but they must be properly placed in order to guarantee efficiency. Although they’re more expensive, they are generally more efficient and safer options.

 

Essentially, your choice of diesel fuel lift pump relies on your personal needs, from budget to boosts. If you have any questions, you can always contact your local mechanic for advice.

lift pump

Get Your Pump On: 3 Different Types Of Fuel Pumps

If you’ve ever purchased a car, you know how many versions, styles, and colors are available for each manufacturer. Unsurprisingly, what’s under the hood is as versatile; while all the necessary components are, well, necessary to keep the vehicle running, they come in a wide variety of designs based on personal use and preference. From diesel fuel lift pumps to diesel filtration systems, you have the freedom to decide (within reason and space limitations) what goes in your car. This article will focus exclusively on fuel pumps.

 

  • Rotary Vane-Style Lift Pumps: Rotary vane pumps contain a paddle-wheel device within a larger circular housing. The wheel is offset within this housing, which creates a crescent-shaped cavity. The paddles slide in and out as the wheel spins, drawing fuel into the pump through the inlet; when the fuel reaches the narrow point of the crescent on the outlet side, it is compressed and pushed through the outlet. These fuel pumps are highly efficient, but they make a lot of noise.

 

  • Gerotor-Style Lift Pumps: Gerotor pumps are high-pressure, high-volume electric fuel pumps. By utilizing two gears (a spur gear and a ring gear) that work together to rotate the cavity, suction is created on the inlet and pressure is exerted on the outlet; this even balance is what makes Gerator pumps so efficient and able to build high pressures — and all without making any noise. However, they are susceptible to damage from contaminants and can experience cavitation because of the strength of the vacuum they produce.

 

  • Diaphragm-Style Fuel Pumps: Diaphragm pumps use a flexible membrane (usually a rubber composite) that moves up and down inside a chamber. The fuel only moves in one direction within that chamber. A lever on the pump fits into a lobe on the camshaft; as the cam spins, the lever is moved, pulling the diaphragm down and increasing the size of the pump chamber, which draws fuel into the pump. When the diaphragm pushes up (aided by a diaphragm spring), the fuel is forced from the chamber and into the feed line. Although they are more resistant to damage from contaminants and debris (like water, scale, rust, and dirt), their high vacuum makes diaphragm pumps vulnerable to vapor lock or cavitation. As a result, they’re usually recommended for carbureted applications where higher pressures aren’t needed.

Unless you are a qualified mechanic, we recommend consulting a professional before making any purchases or changes to your vehicle. Whether your car runs on a diesel fuel supply system or uses regular gasoline, you’ll be able to find a product that best suits your needs.

diesel lift pump

Upgrading Your Diesel Fuel System: A Simple Guide

Diesel engines are still very much around, and not just in the trucking industry. Those who wish to boost power without sacrificing efficiency (as diesel engines rate number one for the most efficient internal combustion) usually fit a diesel engine into their vehicles — and if they want a little extra oomph, they’ll upgrade the diesel fuel system.

The Basics

Before you go digging around in your engine (or pay someone to dig around in your engine), it’s important to know the components involved in diesel fuel systems. Your engine will contain a diesel filtration system, complete with diesel fuel filters to ensure that no dirt or debris gets into that very expensive engine, an injection system, which is responsible for injecting the fuel that will be turned into mechanical energy, but — most importantly — your engine will contain a diesel lift pump.

The fuel lift pump transfers fuel from your tank to the injection system. Virtually every diesel has a lift pump of some kind, yet many people prefer to purchase and install aftermarket pumps to boost their power past factory settings.

Feel The Power

Modifying the amount of fuel that gets injected, either through programming (if your truck is computer-equipped) or manually, is one of the easiest ways to push your engine and “see what she can do”, so to speak. Unfortunately, most factory diesel lift pumps cannot keep up with the change: when supply fuel pressure drops, the injection pressure into the engine will also drop, and so will horsepower. In fact, running pressure that’s too low can potentially harm the injection pump and cause it to fail, so any time you modify your engine for more power and performance, you’re going to want to install a new lift pump as well.

Now that you understand how your system works, you can begin looking for a suitable lift pump. Low-pressure fuel pumps are inexpensive (carrying a price tag of around $100), but they almost always fail in diesel setups. It’s a much better idea to do your research and find a quality diesel lift pump that has been proven to succeed.

fass fuel system dealers

High Roller: Unbelievable Diesel Built LBZ Suburban

Human ambition and imagination have long achieved the most amazing and unbelievable feats. While souped-up, massive car builds aren’t usually the first things that come to mind when discussing profound human achievements, they are nonetheless still on the list. We have no doubt that you’d only have one thing to say when St. Louis native John Eilermann pulls up in his decked-out behemoth, fittingly named “High Roller”: check out the build on that one.

Eilermann had a few basic needs that transformed his 1972 Chevrolet Suburban into the monster it is today:

  1. He wanted a vehicle that was large enough to fit five to six people
  2. It needed to be able to handle his 300-acre property, off-road style

Originally, Eilermann was dead-set on building a Jeep or a safari vehicle to meet these needs — that is until he saw their price tags. Legitimate safari vehicles can run up to $150,000, so the wheels were set in motion to produce the luxurious and powerful High Roller.

Powered by a 6.6-liter LBZ Duramax diesel engine, this car has got it all: limo style seating, moonroof, and no backglass to truly give it that safari-style feel. Known affectionately as a “Duraburb”, High Roller rides on 2007 GM 11.5 AAM rear end with a Yukon Grizzly locker, and a 1989 Ford king-pin Dana 60 front end with a Trac-loc limited slip. Matched perfectly with the wheels and tires, High Roller uses a six-inch Rough Country lift kit, Bilstein rear shocks with remote reservoirs, and a 4:56 gear ratio. Although massive, its 550 horsepower and 1,050 lb-ft of torque give it all the power it needs.

Diesel engines are as powerful as they are efficient: boasting an average if 45 MPG highway rating, Eilermann will be able to have his fun without breaking the bank on gas. If you find yourself in the mood to create something as exciting and unique as High Roller, finding the best fuel lift pumps, diesel fuel filters, and diesel filtration systems are a good way to get started. FASS fuel pumps are known to be reliable and clean, and there are undoubtedly a number of FASS fuel system dealers near your location. Take a page from Eilermann’s book: start with a simple idea and take it to the professionals — your FASS fuel system dealers — to perfect.

fass fuel pump

Diesel 101: Everything You Need To Know As The Owner Of A Diesel Engine

Knowledge is power, so if you drive a big rig or a truck that runs on diesel, it can’t hurt to know a little bit more about it. First of all, there are multiple kinds: just as gasoline is rated by octane, diesel is rated by its cetane, which indicates how easily it ignites and how quickly it burns. Logically, higher ratings equal higher efficiency.

There are two grades of standard diesel fuel (sometimes called diesel oil): Diesel #1 and Diesel #2. You don’t need to worry about differentiating their cetane levels, however, because all diesel automakers specify Diesel #2 for normal driving conditions — Diesel #1 is usually only used by truckers who need to carry heavy loads over long distances.

Diesel fuel is also measured by its viscosity; like all oils, it gets thicker and cloudier at lower temperatures, and can even become a gel and refuse to flow under extreme conditions. Diesel #1 is more efficient in cold temperatures because it naturally flows more easily. But don’t worry if you live in a place that experiences exceptionally cold and bitter winters: most service stations offer blended diesel fuel for local weather conditions.

Historically, diesel engines have been around since the 1890s. However, it wasn’t until a few decades ago that conventional diesel exhaust was linked to cancer due to exposure and considered extremely dangerous. As a result, clean diesel engines were created: with many diesel filtration systems and diesel fuel lift pumps in existence designed to reduce harmful emissions, use of diesel fuel has become considerably safer — just be sure not to inhale the fuels themselves when filling up.

Today, there are over 50 different types of diesel engines to choose from. You have the pick of the litter when it comes to your particular set up: the FASS fuel pump (fuel air separation system) is remarkable in its ability to combine both a fuel lift pump and filtration system to increase efficiency, which increases mileage. FASS fuel pumps also boost engine performance and extend the life of your diesel injection system which saves you money on repairs and replacements in the long run. They are also exceptionally clean, so you don’t have to worry about your carbon footprint or personal health.

universal fuel pump

Florida Man Accused Of Plotting To Steal Diesel Fuel Arrested

Adding another “Florida Man” story to the growing list, a man in Florida was arrested in mid-September for plotting to steal diesel fuel. Donald Fowler, 47, had been driving an SUV hauling a trailer when he was pulled over by a Polk County deputy; his vehicle had no tags and he was driving without his lights on.

 

Upon pulling Fowler over, the deputy (who was a PCSO detective with the Agricultural Crimes Unit) discovered a 500-gallon plastic tank in the trailer, as well as a transfer universal fuel pump device, a pair of bolt cutters, a pipe wrench, and a glove in the backseat. Fowler then admitted his intent to steal diesel fuel and was taken to jail.

 

It was later discovered that Fowler had already cut the chain in the fence surrounding Putnam’s Citrus Grove, which held a pump shed and several gallons of fuel — while he was detained, somebody else had broken in and stolen around 60 gallons of the stuff.

 

It sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Logic seems to dictate that, if you’re going to steal anything diesel related, you should go for the engine parts: diesel fuel pumps and diesel filtration systems, or any of the components involved in diesel fuel systems rather than the fuel itself. A fuel lift pump or universal fuel pump has to run for more than “black market” diesel, right? Apparently not.

 

The country has been struggling quite a great deal with people stealing diesel. It’s supposed to be less risky than selling drugs, and the money is easy — criminals can make $1,000 or more a day re-selling the stolen fuel. They certainly have a market for it; around 10% of all trucks sold in the U.S. are diesel engine trucks, and that’s not including all of the construction vehicle and equipment that runs on diesel.

 

Perpetrators of the crime use credit card “skimmers”, which record the card information of unsuspecting customers as they fuel up, and then transfer this information onto the magnetic strip of a counterfeit card. Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Miami are the hot spots for diesel theft, with some gangs making away with nearly $20 million a year.

diesel fuel systems

Diesel Fuel Systems: Everything You Need To Know

You’ve always seen the option when you go to the gas station, but have never really paid much attention to it: diesel fuel. What makes it different from gasoline and why does it matter? Here’s everything you need to know about diesel fuel systems and their role in American society.

How it Differs

Both gasoline and diesel fuel systems are internal combustion engines, compressing fuel and then igniting it to convert chemical energy to mechanical energy. However, their methods of combustion are not the same: diesel engines compress air and then introduce the fuel (air heats up when it is compressed so contact with diesel fuel creates ignition), whereas gasoline engines mix gas and air from the get-go and compress them, then spark plugs create sparks that ignite the mixture.

Diesel fuel is heavier and more oily than gasoline, so it evaporates more slowly. Additionally, it is remarkably more efficient due to its combustion method: many diesel engines get around 45 miles to the gallon on the highway, which explains why most commercial trucks and freights employ the use of diesel fuel systems. As a result, a good chunk of American commerce relies on big rigs that run on diesel.

Understanding the Components

A diesel engine is made up of five essential parts: the tank, the diesel fuel pump, diesel fuel filters, the injection pump, and injection nozzles. The fuel reservoirs are specifically designed from aluminum alloys or sheet metals to withstand the corrosive effects of diesel fuel.

The fuel lift pump pulls diesel out of the reservoir and moves it into the injection pump, where it is pushed through the diesel filtration system to remove any contaminants that may have been picked up during its long journey from the refinery to the gas station — this is vital because dirt and debris could severely damage the injection system and, subsequently, the entire engine.

The injection pump then compresses the fuel in preparation for injection. Injection nozzles spray the compressed diesel into the combustion chambers, which fire (literally through miniature explosions) and turn the fuel into mechanical energy.

Understanding how your engine functions is a key part of responsible car ownership, even if you’re simply driving it as a result of your job.