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What Is a Fuel Pressure Sensor?

by Kevin Caron

In cars with an electronic returnless fuel system, a fuel pressure sensor -- a small electronic device located along a vehicle's fuel rail -- feeds fuel pressure data to the power train control module, or PCM.

The Facts

Electronic returnless fuel systems reduce evaporative emissions from automobiles by feeding the engine only the precise amount of fuel it needs to run. This way, the engine avoids leaving excess fuel to evaporate in the fuel line.

Function

The fuel pressure sensor senses the amount of fuel in the fuel rail by reading the internal pressure of the rail. It can then send an electronic message to the PCM telling it precisely how much fuel needs to be released into the engine.

The PCM

In an electronic returnless fuel system, the PCM -- as the vehicle's onboard computer that regulates engine functions -- takes the pressure information delivered to it by the fuel pressure sensor and relays the engine's fuel needs to the fuel pump, which supplies the engine with fuel.

About the Author

Kevin Caron has over a decade of experience in the publishing industry. He has written for newspapers and served in various editorial roles for a number of publishing companies. Caron holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Keene State College in Keene, N.H.

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