There are plenty of ways a Subaru specialist can test your fuel pump to see if it’s failing. Here are 6 of the most common symptoms that you as the owner can keep an eye (and ear) out for so that you don’t get stranded due to a faulty fuel pump.
The most common signs of a problem with your Subaru’s fuel pump are; a high-pitched whine, hesitation when trying to accelerate, lower vehicle performance, extended cranking time, and surging acceleration while trying to maintain a constant speed.
This article will provide information about these symptoms and ways to keep your fuel pump healthy longer. It will also help you understand the costs involved when it’s time to replace the fuel pump on your Subaru.
The Most Common Signs You Have A Faulty Fuel Pump In Your Subaru
1. You Hear A High-Pitched Whining Noise
When your fuel pump is on its way out, it might give you some warning by making noises. This is usually caused by the failing pump struggling to maintain the fuel pressure needed to keep your Subaru running efficiently. In most cases, the whining noise will become more pronounced closer to failure. It will often be easier to hear if the pump is making noise when you start your Subaru than when you are driving. The chances are that if you can hear the fuel pump making noise while you’re out on the road, you don’t have much time left before it fails completely.
2. Your Subaru Cranks For A Long Time Before It Finally Starts
Most vehicles will fire up after 1.5 to 2 seconds of turning the key. If you’re constantly having a problem with the engine taking a long time to start, this could be a sign your fuel pump is failing. Try to keep track if it continues to take longer and longer to start each time you go for a drive. This is not something you will want to ignore, as this is usually the last stage before the pump completely fails.
3. You Have Low Performance
You will get to know how your vehicle drives over time. If it seems like your car is now struggling to perform as intended, it may be due to a problem with your fuel pump. If your fuel pump is failing, your engine computer will limit the performance of your Subaru. You will usually see a check engine light, and your Subaru will go into “limp mode” to avoid catastrophic engine failure due to lack of fuel.
4. Hesitation When Accelerating
Your engine can still run with a faulty fuel pump (until it fails completely). You will know that your fuel pump is about to fail when you attempt to accelerate rapidly and notice a hesitation in your vehicle. Usually, you will feel the vehicle stumble and stutter as you have requested more fuel for this acceleration than it can give. This can cause a check engine light to turn on; in most cases, it will be flashing when this stutter happens. The flashing engine light almost always points to a misfire caused by low fuel pressure.
5. Your Subaru Surges When The Accelerator Pedal Stays Consistent
This symptom is most common when driving at highway speeds and using cruise control. It will feel as if you’re pressing and releasing the accelerator pedal when you’re not. It will be even more noticeable when using cruise control, and the surging will occur when you’re not pressing the accelerator. This is another sign of not enough fuel being sent to the engine by the failing fuel pump in your Subaru.
How To Extend The Life Of Your Fuel Pump
- Refuel your Subaru at no lower than a quarter tank of fuel. Running the tank to empty causes unnecessary wear and tear on your fuel pump and shortens its life expectancy.
- Always use the fuel grade recommended by Subaru in your vehicle.
- Avoid using “alternative” fuels unless instructed explicitly by Subaru. Using other fuels such as E-85 in your vehicle will cause damage to your fuel pump.
- Only get your fuel from a trusted source. Putting fuel in your vehicle that has been contaminated with water will cause premature failure of your fuel pump.
- If recommended on your year and model of Subaru, use a fuel system cleaner or gas tank additive to keep your fuel pump running smooth longer.
How Much Does A New Fuel Pump Cost?
Since Subaru has many models and has been around for over 50 years, more information about your specific vehicle will be needed to get an exact cost. The cost of fuel pump replacement on the most common Subaru models is between $500 and $900 dollars.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, it’s time to go to your Subaru specialist to diagnose your issues and ensure that the fuel pump is the culprit. Find a repair shop specializing in Subarus as they have many unique parts and systems. It will save you time and money by getting your vehicle diagnosed and repaired by an expert Subaru mechanic.