Fuel Tank Pressure Sensor
The fuel tank pressure sensor is an essential component of your vehicle’s evaporative emissions system. It is used to monitor the pressure inside the fuel tank to prevent it from damage caused by fuel vapors that can collect inside the tank due to the impact of high temperatures. The sensor continually reads the fuel tank pressure and sends signals to the engine control unit, so it can operate the canister purge valve and other related system and devices to ensure safe and efficient engine operation.
Depending on the vehicle you own, the fuel tank pressure sensor can be located either on the top of the fuel pump assembly or inside it. Regardless of its place, it does a crucial job for your vehicle, providing the engine control module with vital data required for your engine operation. Thus, the fuel tank pressure sensor helps for detecting and preventing fuel leaks in the tank and the rest of the fuel system. In addition, it allows the engine control unit to manage fuel consumption and to analyze the operation of the evaporative emissions system to make sure it functions properly. Besides, it will inform the computer if you get a defective gas cap or any fuel storage system problem appears.
What should I do if I have a bad fuel tank pressure sensor?
A faulty fuel tank pressure sensor will cause the engine control unit to turn on the check engine light. If the only problem is a faulty sensor, you may not experience any other engine or fuel system issues until another fuel system component malfunctions. If that happens, you may notice one of the following symptoms or their different combinations:
- Poor fuel economy
- Problems with your engine performance, such as bad acceleration, stalling, hard starting and rough idling
- Black smoke from the exhaust
- Drops of fuel from the tailpipe
If you notice any of these signs, get in touch with your mechanic immediately to schedule a meeting. A faulty fuel tank pressure sensor is not repairable and must be replaced with a new unit. Unless you are a mechanic, this job should be left to a professional.