Modern consumer vehicles (non-diesel) are all equipped with a rather uniform fuel system in which has many critical components that are susceptible fuel containments. Most vehicle owners have heard of the “quarter tank syndrome” in which it is recommended that you not run your vehicle with a quarter tank or less of fuel. Why is this? It is partially to do with cooling/lubrication, however, mostly to prevent the small particulates found in fuel from entering your fuel system. Small debris can mix in with the fuel during production, transportation, and during introduction to the fuel system (vehicle tank). Countries such as the US currently have regulated filters throughout the process, including at the pump, however, none of these are effective enough to prevent particulates from entering the fuel system. The evidence is seen in the fuel system failures resulting from the containments. According to studies, one of the leading causes of the following fuel system failures is due to particulates in fuel resulting from the refining and transportation process or accidental insertion (dirt, paint, etc. knocked in during fueling).
Standard Fuel Pump [in-tank]
Particulates that are pumped into the tank during fueling are pulled up into the fuel pump pick up screen (on pump lower left). Over time, the particulates will begin to block the free flow of fuel into the pump, causing the pump to over exert itself in order to maintain the PSI the fuel system requires to perform properly and efficiently. Eventually, this will cause the pump burn out over time.
Average replacement: $400.00
Standard Fuel Line, rail, regulator & injectors.
Particulates that make it through the fuel pump are pushed through the fuel lines and into the external fuel filter (on most vehicles). The external fuel filter serves as a last defense against particulate matter before entering into more sensitive components. However, due to its location many do not properly replace the filter at the recommended intervals. A clogged fuel filter will not function properly and allow particulates to pass through. Thus causing very poor drivability, reduced mpg, and increased emissions. Once through the fuel lines, particulate matter is moved along to the fuel rail, pressure regulator, and injectors (one per cylinder). This can cause the regulator to malfunction as well as clogging up the needle point openings on the injectors or throttle body. This can lead to a lean burn caused by improper fuel to oxygen ratios in the combustion process (too much air and not enough fuel).
Fuel injector replacement cost: $104.00 each
Standard exhaust system, O2 sensor & catalytic converter.
The exhaust system houses one to four O2 sensors which measures the oxygen in the exhaust as it passes out of the vehicle through the exhaust system. In the case of lean burn (mentioned above) the sensors will prompt the vehicle’s computer system to signal the injectors for more fuel, and since the PSI back at the pump is inadequate, more fuel is unable to be delivered, resulting in the Service/Check Engine light illuminating. Extended driving under these conditions will cause the O2 sensors to burn out. Average O2 sensor replacement cost: $47.00. Because of the excessive heat generated by the lean burn, the inner element of the catalytic converter will melt and occasionally break into pieces. Those pieces are then passed into the muffler, causing damage. Average catalytic converter replacement cost: $800-$1,500.
Average muffler replacement cost: $150.00
By the Numbers
Maintenance report survey for 50 vehicles randomly selected out of 292 over a 60 day period
(Provided by Middle Eastern contractors)
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Prices vary per location
In order to prevent particulates from damaging sensitive fuel components, you must prevent the particulates from entering the fuel system before they are introduced to the vehicle. As the average consumer does not have the ability to control the refining, transportation, and storage process… CFS co has developed the next best thing, the Clean Fuel Screen. This simple device is inserted into the fuel inlet where an individual adds fuel to the vehicles fuel tank. The filter itself has been engineered to meet all of the evap and auto-shutoff valve specifications. Meaning there is no expensive modifications that need to be done to enable a vehicle to utilize the Clean Fuel Screen. Once the filter is securely in place, the user adds fuel as they normally would, however, with the added protection of the fine micron filtration used by the Clean Fuel Screen, the driver can be confident that their vehicle has the greatest secondary fuel system protection on the market.