Car Ran Out Of Gas Now Won’t Start: Causes And Solutions

Have you ever been stranded on the side of the road, desperately trying to start your car, only to realize it’s out of gas? Many drivers have found themselves in the same predicament and have been able to get their cars running again. But why doesn’t the car start after the gas has run out? 

When a car runs out of gas, the fuel pump stops working, preventing the engine from receiving the fuel needed to start. In modern cars the pump is located inside the gas tank.So running the car out of fuel can also damage the pump.

In this post, we’ll look at the common causes of a car not starting after running out of gas and what you can do to fix it.

Car Ran Out Of Gas Now Won't Start
Car Ran Out Of Gas Now Won’t Start

Why Won’t My Car Start: (After the Gas Has Run Out)

Understanding the possible causes and troubleshooting the issue is crucial to get your car running again.

There Can Be A Damaged Fuel Pump /Failure

 Fuel Pump
Fuel Pump

The fuel pump is responsible for pumping gas to the engine. When the gas tank is empty, it can get overworked and overheat. Thus it can lead to damage or failure of the fuel pump, and your car won’t start.

Your Fuel Injectors/Filter are Clogged

air filter
air filter

The fuel filter is designed to filter out impurities from the engine. When the fuel level is low, they may find their way through the fuel lines and cause the injectors to clog. 

Decreased Braking and Steering Ability

Without a working engine, you will feel heavy and hard to push down the brake. And as a result, the power steering will not work, making it difficult to turn the wheel and start the car.

Braking and Steering
Braking and Steering

How to Start A Car That Has Run Out Of Gas ?

Let’s be honest; there’s not always a safe place to pull over when your car decides to give up on you. Here are the four steps you can apply to start your car after it has run out of gas:

Step 1:  First, Fill Up Your Empty Tank 

When your car runs out of gas, the first step to getting it started again is to fill up the tank. You don’t need to fill it up all the way. Just make sure to purchase the correct type of fuel for your vehicle.

Step 2: Give the Fuel Time to Get into the System

Before starting the car, ensure the vehicle is level and prime the gas pedal a few times. This will help the fuel flow through the system and reach the combustion chamber. 

Be patient, and don’t try to start the car before the fuel has reached where it needs to be.

Step 3: Allow the Fuel Injectors to do their Job

Fuel Injector

Most modern cars have a fuel injection system. To ensure the best success ratio, turn the key halfway, allowing the electrical systems to turn on. 

Wait for a few minutes, turn off the car, and repeat this process a few times. This will allow the fuel pumps to pump enough fuel to start the car.

Step 4: Now Try Starting the Car 

With the fuel system primed, the chamber has access to fuel. Now you can turn the key in and try starting the car. If it doesn’t start after several tries, perform steps one to three again.

7 Tips to Avoid Running Out of Gas

Running out of gas is a frustrating and potentially dangerous situation we all want to avoid. 

Not only can it cause unexpected stalls, but it also puts you at risk of dangerous maneuvers on the road.

Here are some tips to help you avoid running out of gas and keep you smooth on the road:

  • Always Keep an eye on your fuel gauge and make sure to fill up your tank before it reaches the “E” level.
  • Especially when going on a long road trip, learn about your route and the location of gas stations along the way. You can use apps or websites to locate nearby gas stations and compare prices.
  • Avoid using your car’s reserve fuel if possible, as this can damage the fuel pump.
  • Don’t let your gas tank get below ¼ full to prevent impurities from clogging the fuel injectors.
  • A good advice is to set reminders on your phone or car’s navigation system to remind you to fill up your tank.
  • Don’t forget to regularly check your vehicle’s fuel consumption to monitor how much fuel you have left.
  • Avoid excessive idling and use cruise control on the highway to save fuel. Cruise mood can improve your vehicle’s fuel efficiency, resulting in potential savings of 7-14% on gas expenses.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

Our readers often have questions regarding cars not starting after the gas has run out. We have tried our best to fulfill their query and answer them correctly.

Can An Empty Gas Tank Prevent A Car From Starting?

Yes, an empty gas tank can prevent a car from starting, as the fuel pump and injectors rely on gas to function properly. Without fuel in the tank, the engine will not receive the necessary fuel to start.

Can Running Out Of Gas Harm Your Car?

Running out of gas can harm a car by damaging the fuel pump and injectors because it can put a lot of stress and break down the components of your car’s fuel system. In the long run, you will face decreased performance.

What Causes An Airlock In A Fuel Tank?

An airlock in a fuel tank is caused by air becoming trapped in the fuel system, preventing fuel from flowing properly. This can occur when the fuel tank is not full or when the fuel level drops too low, causing a vacuum in the fuel lines.

What Are The Indications Of Clogged Fuel Lines?

When a fuel line is blocked or leaks, it can cause issues with the engine. Signs that your vehicle may have clogged fuel lines include difficulty starting, slow acceleration, and stalling or sputtering while running.

Final thoughts

Now that you know the potential causes of your car not starting after running out of gas, take the necessary steps to prevent this.

One of the most important things you can do is to keep an eye on your fuel gauge to avoid running out of gas. On top of that, keeping a small gas can in your trunk in an emergency is a good practice. 

We suggest inspecting your car regularly to ensure that all fuel system parts are functioning correctly. Besides, if you run out of gas and your car won’t start, call a tow truck or a mechanic to help you. 

Remember, taking preventative measures and being prepared can save you from a lot of hassle and potentially dangerous situations on the road.

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