New Fuel Pump Noise? Here’s What You Want To Check

Is your newly installed fuel pump making strange noises? If a brand new fuel pump is making unusual noises, there are a few possible causes:

  1. Loose fuel pump
  2. Contaminated fuel filter
  3. Low fuel tank level
  4. Contaminated fuel

A Low Humming Sound Is Normal


Is your fuel pump making a low humming sound? If so, you have nothing to worry about. A fuel pump should make that noise. Most people never notice it, because they’re not trying to listen to it. The pump is driven by an electric motor, so of course it will always hum softly when in use.

What about other noises like whining, sputtering, or buzzing? There’s something wrong with the pump, fuel, or related parts. Read on for a list of the most common issues with brand new fuel pumps that could cause strange noises.

1. Loose Fuel Pump

Loose pump

Most common noises: whining, droning, wet sputtering

Was the pump properly installed and tightened? A fuel pump that’s a little loose can make a lot of noise. If you suspect that this is the reason your fuel pump is making noise, you can see if it’s loose. If it is, tightening it (or reinstalling it) should get rid of the noise.

2. Contaminated Fuel Filter

Bad filter

Most common noises: buzzing, loud humming

Did you replace the fuel filter while installing the fuel pump? If not, you may be dealing with a clogged filter that’s blocking the fuel flow. This causes the fuel pump to work harder than normal, which creates a loud buzzing or humming noise. Other signs of a clogged fuel filter include:

  • Engine starts hard
  • Engine running rough
  • Sluggish acceleration

The only way to find out if a contaminated fuel filter is the root of the issue is to check the filter. If you find that it’s clogged, replace it. The fuel pump noise should go away.

3. Low Fuel Tank Level

Low fuel

Most common noises: whining, buzzing

Do you have a habit of driving on empty? If you rarely fill your gas tank to the top, the pump may overheat. That is why the fuel pump is inside the gas tank. The fuel helps keep the fuel pump cool. When your gas tank is chronically empty (below 1/4), the fuel pump will wear out faster from excessive heat.

Do you suspect that your fuel pump is making noise because it’s overheated? Keep your gas tank full and see if the noise goes away over time.

4. Contaminated Fuel

Bad fuel

Most common noises: whining, buzzing

Fuel that contains impurities such as dirt, metal shavings, or rust will have a negative affect on the fuel pump. The fuel pump can only handle liquid, not dirt or any debris. Have you noticed any of the following signs besides high-pitched whining or buzzing noises? You may have contaminated fuel in your tank.

  • Engine running rough
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Difficulty starting the engine
  • Misfiring

If this is the case, then it’s possible that your fuel pump has already gone bad (especially if it’s a cheaply built one). If you end up having to replace it again, our condolences. We recommend getting a high quality replacement fuel pump that’s designed to OE specs, like a GMB fuel pump. A high quality fuel pump has a much lower chance of failing so soon.


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