Learning, Concepts of Electricity,

How to Prime Electric Fuel Pump? (Two Methods)

Have you ever wondered how to prime an electric fuel pump? This quick and easy guide will show you how!

Here are some easy steps to use for priming the fuel pump:

  1. Find the fuel pump. It could be under the back seats or in the fuel tank, depending on your car type.
  2. Find the priming switch on the fuel pump.
  3. Turn the primer switch to the “on” position several times, but don’t leave it there.
  4. Clean up any fuel that got spilled, and turn on your engine.

We’ll go into more details below.

Getting Started

An electric fuel pump is an essential part of your car. The fuel pump moves gas from the tank to the engine. The gas has to go through a hose, which is also called the fuel line. The fuel pump makes sure the gas gets to the right place.

The fuel pump is used in cars where the fuel can’t be pumped into the system by gravity alone. Two kinds of engines exist. The first is called a carbureted engine, and the second is called a fuel-injected engine.

Most of the time, an electric fuel pump will be used in a fuel-injected engine. You might have to prime it to get more gas into the system.

Priming an Electric Fuel Pump

You can prime the electric fuel pump in your car in two ways. Here are the Methods for priming the electric fuel pump in detail:

Method #1 Turn the Vehicle’s Ignition Key

The first method is easy, and anyone who knows how to turn a car key can do it.

  1. Place the key in the ignition.
  2. Turn it to “on.” Leave it there for ten seconds.
  3. Turn off the switch again.
  4. Do this two more times.
  5. This will prime your fuel pump.

Method #2 Access the Fuel Pump Primer Switch

The second way involves getting access to the fuel pump itself. This is hard to do because the pump is sometimes inside the gas tank.

If you’re up to the challenge, you can use this priming method by doing the following:

Step 1: First, Find the Fuel Pump

Ensure the car is turned off and sits still for at least two hours. You will be working near the fuel injection parts of your car, and if the car is still warm, you could quickly get burned.

Wear gloves that protect your hands before working on or around the car. If you want to get under the car, you may need to lift it. You must drain the gas tank and pull it out on many models. In some models, getting to the fuel pump under the back seat or through the trunk floor is possible.

If you don’t know where the gas tank is, look at the directions from the car’s maker. Find the electric fuel pump once you’ve found the gas tank. Most of the time, the fuel pumps are inside the tank.

Step 2: Flip the Switch

close button of an electric fuel pump

Step 3: Close the Car’s Hood and Clean Up

Close the car’s hood and clean up where you’re working. Clean your hands thoroughly with a cleaner that eliminates any fuel on them.

Step 4: Test the Car

Test the car out. If necessary, re-prime the electric fuel pump.

A Few Notes

  • You usually want to do this when you want to bleed your line. You won’t need to prime your electric fuel pump to run your car normally.
  • For safety, a prime switch is also used. You can use the prime switch if your car’s engine dies or the filters get clogged up.
  • Some electric fuel pumps don’t need to be primed by hand because they have a built-in feature that does it for them. Find out what kind of priming system your car has by looking at the manufacturer’s information book.
  • If you’re not sure how to prime your electric fuel pump, ask a certified auto mechanic for help.

When Do I Need to Prime my Fuel Pump?

After letting the fuel out of the fuel line, you should prime the car fuel pump. Most electric fuel pumps already have a primer built in, so you won’t even have to worry about it.

But if you have an older car, you may need to prime the fuel pump by hand after installing a new one.

If a car with a carburetor has been sitting for too long, the fuel pump might need to be primed. This is especially true if the car has been sitting in the cold.

Priming the fuel pump in your vehicle is something that anybody with even a passing interest in mechanics should have no trouble doing.

But don’t try to do this or any other repair or maintenance if you aren’t confident in your skills. Find a licensed mechanic if you aren’t sure.


Should You Wait for The Fuel Pump to Prime?

To start an EFI engine in a car or truck, you should only turn the ignition key to the run position and not any farther. This is the correct way to start the engine. Continue into the crank mode as soon as you hear the fuel pump relay turn off, after which you should wait for the fuel rail to prime. The correct order is first to operate the machine, then wait, and last, turn the crank.

How Can I Test if My Fuel Pump Works?

Listen to the fuel pump by positioning your ear near the fuel tank and having someone else turn the ignition key to the “on” position. You should be able to hear the fuel pump operating if you listen closely.

Take a look at some of our related articles below.

Video References

Ron Does Stuff

Scott O’Malley

How helpful was this article?

Were Sorry This Was Not Helpful!

Let us improve this post!

Please Tell Us How We Can Improve This Article.

About Sam Orlovsky

AvatarCertifications: B.E.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Electric Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Electrical engineering is my passion, and I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years. This gives me a unique ability to give you expert home improvement and DIY recommendations. I’m not only an electrician, but I also like machinery and anything to do with carpentry. One of my career paths started as a general handyman, so I also have a lot of experience with home improvement I love to share.

| Reach Me

Leave a Comment