Fuel Starvation Is Bad for Your Engine

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We’ve all done it and don’t think we’ve suffered any consequences. What is it that’s so bad? Starving our vehicle engines of fuel. Driving until your “idiot” light comes on before you fill ‘er up is bad for your automobile’s engine. Now, don’t get us wrong here at Padron Automotive. We do not think you’re an idiot. Not at all. But, it’s best to never let this dashboard warning light come on. Here’s why.

Low Fuel Increases Engine Exposure to Contaminants

Think of your gas tank like a fish tank. When you prepare the home for your children’s finned pets, you layer the bottom of the tank with decorative rock. This rock remains settled on the bottom of the tank unless it’s disrupted. Because the rock remains settled, the fish swim in clean water. Your gas tank is somewhat like this fish tank. There is sediment settled on the bottom of the tank with gasoline resting on top, and this sediment is a contaminant to your car, truck, or SUV’s engine because it can damage it.

If you let your gas tank get too low on fuel, the fuel pump disrupts the sediment by drawing it from the bottom of the tank with what’s left of the gasoline and pushing it through to the engine. Your fuel filter will catch most of the sediment if it’s clean but it might not catch all of it. Once the sediment is introduced into the engine, it rests there and clogs it. Even if you buy premium gasoline that touts it has the best engine cleaning additives ever, there is still sediment in it. All gas has sediment.

Low Fuel Also Overheats Your Engine

Another problem with driving on an empty tank is that it overheats your fuel pump’s motor. Fuel pumps are electric these days and they can run too hot if they’re left with little fuel to push through into the combustion chamber. The fuel in your vehicle’s gas tank works kind of like coolant does. It prevents the fuel pump motor from burning too hot. If the fuel pump is left with more air and sediment than gasoline to push through, it will overheat and transfer that excessive to your engine.

If you have a bad habit of driving on fumes – and we all do – call Padron Automotive in Topeka, KS, today. We’ll make sure your engine hasn’t been harmed by fuel sediment and your fuel pump motor is a-okay.