How to Quiet a Noisy Fuel Pump


Is the fuel pump in your vehicle making a whining noise? Or perhaps a buzzing noise? These and other noises can be a symptom of a bigger problem. Quieting your fuel pump may require fixing or replacing worn out parts.

Here are the top ways of quieting a noisy fuel pump:

 1. Fill up the tank

If your gas pump is making whining noises, it’s probably due to low gas. When you’re riding on “E”, the pump has to work extra hard and it produces additional stress on the components. So don’t want until your gas tank is almost empty to fill it up.

It’s best not to drive with the tank below one-fourth full. This should be followed as a general guideline to increase the longevity of the fuel pump.

2. In case of contaminated fuel call a mechanic

The fuel you put in the tank might be contaminated. In this case you’ll hear a grinding noise. The fuel is typically contaminated by water during transportation or the petrol station underground tank.

Some other signs of contaminated fuel you’re likely to experience are hard starts and stalled engines. If this is the problem, you’ll see these signs immediately after you’ve put in contaminated fuel.

The first step is to shut off the engine as soon as you possibly can. Driving with contaminated fuel is likely to destroy the engine completely and require replacement of multiple parts.

Call your mechanic or a towing company to tow the car to the mechanic. You should also call the fuel provider and tell them what happened. In most situations they will foot the bill for any repairs needed. They’ll try to avoid any bad publicity so it’s only natural.

3. Fix loss of pressure

Signs of low pressure include a stalling sound and lurching forward of the vehicle. It might continue driving okay after the first few seconds of these symptoms. But the pump is definitely on a downward trajectory at that point. Some potential causes of low pressure are:

  • dirty fuel filter
  • incorrect tank venting
  • restricted fuel lines
  • clogged pump inlet strainer
  • weak pump

To make sure that you’re dealing with any of these problems in the first place, test the fuel pump pressure. You can use a fuel pump pressure tester (this is the one used in the video) to do this:

As you can see, the most common issue is a faulty fuel pressure regulator. If that’s the case, it’s best to replace it. Luckily, regulators are not too expensive and it’s worth replacing one if it’s causing trouble. Here is a video that shows you how to replace a fuel pressure regulator:

The process is almost the same with every car. Here is the pressure regulator that was used in the video, available on Amazon.

4. Replace a weak fuel pump

Standard fuel pumps are not noisy, except when there’s an issue. But fuel pumps can’t last forever. After some time they break down and might need a direct replacement instead of fixing individual parts to make it work a few more months.

They’re not that expensive, and it’s definitely worth replacing it to avoid complete engine shut offs while on the road. Taking your car to a mechanic to get it replaced is the easiest solution. But it will also increase the price by a lot.

Replacing the fuel pump by yourself is not difficult at all, and all the information is available online. I have to recommend another video by ChrisFix if you’re interested in doing this by yourself:

The products used in this video are all available online:

You obviously don’t have to use those exact products. Get the ones that match your car requirements and the price you’re willing to pay to fix this problem.

5. Insulate the fuel pump with soundproofing material

If your fuel pump is working fine but it’s just loud, consider covering the surrounding area with soundproofing material. This will be especially helpful for electric fuel pumps, which are much noisier than mechanic ones. Cover the surrounding area with one or two layers of a self-adhesive insulating mat.

These mats are designed to withstand high temperatures and can stick on almost any surface you place them on. They can be used for soundproofing the car cabin, trunk, doors and the engine compartment. The fuel pump is no exception.

I suggest using FatMat since it is the most affordable product and provides excellent insulation. Cut it to size and stick it around the fuel pump. It will prevent airborne noise and vibration noise from seeping into the car cabin and disturbing you as you listen to your favorite tunes.

Final Thoughts

I’ve read countless forum posts about noisy fuel pumps. Many people tried to fix the problem and wrote down various solutions that didn’t work. They either worked temporarily or not at all.

In the end, most of them solved the problem completely by replacing the fuel pump. I don’t want to sound discouraging, but it’s probably the best way to go if your pump is buzzing AND not working optimally. Either way, I hope you’ll find these tips and tricks useful and fix this problem for good.

Peter Bone

Soundproof expert and a staunch opponent of noise. This website is a free source of information on how to 'keep it down a notch'. I update the content regularly to keep up with advancements in the soundproofing industry.

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