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How to Check the Fuel Cap Light on a Ford Ranger

by Allen Moore

The Fuel Cap Monitor Light on the Ford Ranger is an emission related device designed to warn you if your fuel system is not properly sealed. In the event your start your Ranger without the fuel cap on securely, or not on at all, the light will turn on to make you aware of the situation. In some cases, the cap may appear to be on tight, but the light is still on. If that is the case, you can do some quick troubleshooting yourself before taking a trip to the service center.

Step 1

Get out of the Ranger and make sure the fuel cap is on. If not, put it on and go see if the light turns off. If the cap is already on, move to step two.

Step 2

Remove the cap and inspect the threads on the cap to make sure there is no grit or grime preventing it from sealing properly. Then, take your flashlight and inspect the female threads in the filler neck where the cap attaches. Once you have verified the threads are clean, reinstall the cap and turn until you hear a click noise. Once you have done this, go back to see if the light has turned back off. If not, move on to step three.

Purchase a new fuel cap and install it on your Ranger. Once it is on, check to see if the warning light is still illuminated. If so, return the fuel cap and take your Ranger to an authorized Ford repair shop for further diagnosis.


  • If you determine your cap is not the problem, you may have a leaking fuel filler neck, leaking tank or damage to your fuel vapor recovery system. It might be as simple as a vapor line that was pulled off, but more than likely the technician will find damage somewhere in the system.


  • Never top off your tank at the gas station after the gas pump shuts off. Any gas poured into the filler neck after the pump clicks off on its own will merely go into your vapor recovery system and ruin it. Not only will you be wasting the few cents of gas you are adding, you will be damaging a system that could easily cost several hundred dollars to repair.

Items you will need

  • Flashlight
  • Replacement cap (optional)

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