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Essential Information About Your Car's Fuel System

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Essential Information About Your Car's Fuel System

Carol Mitchel
August 8, 2006

Probably the most significant component of an automobile is the fuel. It is a substantial component that enables your car to move and reach your destination. The primary function of the fuel system is to store and supply fuel to the cylinder chamber of the engine. The fuel injected to the engine is vaporized and combusted, thus producing the required energy to operate the vehicle.

The fuel itself, which could be either gasoline or diesel, is stored in a fuel tank. A fuel pump pushes the fuel from the tank through fuel lines and conveys it into a fuel filter. After filtering the fuel, it will pass though a carburetor or fuel injector, and then delivered to the cylinder chamber for combustion.

The main part of the fuel system is the fuel tank. Most cars contain a single fuel tank that is conveniently located at the rear of the vehicle. Nowadays, fuel tanks developed by auto manufacturers have internal baffles to prevent the fuel from drenching. Broken internal baffles can cause unwanted noises at the rear during acceleration or when slowing down. Standard fuel tanks contain fuel filler pipe, a fuel outlet line to the engine, and a vent system. Vehicles with catalytic converters are equipped with a filler pipe restrictor that prevents leaded fuel – dispensed from a thicker nozzle – from entering the fuel system. Fuel lines, made of metal or rubber hoses transmit the fuel from the fuel tank to the combustion engine.

Another part of the fuel system is the fuel pump. Most of the modern fuel systems like Jaguar fuel system parts utilize two different types of fuel pumps, the mechanical and electric fuel pump. Fuel injected cars use electric fuel pumps, while most cars that use carburetors are equipped with mechanical fuel pumps. Mechanical fuel pumps are diaphragm pumps mounted on the engine and operated by an eccentric cam usually on the camshaft. Electric pumps can be located anywhere on the vehicle because they are type of fuel pumps that does not depend on eccentric for the operation but usually, electric pumps are located near the fuel tank.

The last and definitely not the least part of the automotive fuel system is the fuel filter. The fuel filter is located in the fuel line that functions as a screen that prevents dust and other foreign particle from entering the fuel system.



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