How to Get Water Out of a Fuel System

by Brock Cooper

If you are trying to start your car and it will crank, but refuses to fire up the engine, then you may have water in your gas tank. This can be bad not only for getting the car started, but it can rust important parts if goes through the fuel line. Luckily, there are ways to get water out of your fuel system.

Getting rid of water in a fuel system

Drain the fuel tank. If you suspect water in your gas tank, some car models have a drain on the fuel tank that you can use to get the fuel out of the tank. Water is heavier than fuel so it will come out first especially if you have let the car sit for a few hours. Even if you only have a small amount of water in the tank, it's best to drain the whole thing and start over with a fresh tank of gas.

Pull the gas tank. If you do not have a drain on your tank, then you are going to have to take the gas tank off the car and drain the fuel manually. You can also try to siphon the gas out of the gas tank from where you put the fuel in, but this can be dangerous and a possible fire hazard.

Replace the fuel filter. If the fuel filter had water running through it, then it can disintegrate and stop working. It's best to simply replace the filter and eliminate the possibility of a problem down the road. You can replace the filter yourself or have a technician replace it, but the technician will charge you for the work.

Clean out the fuel lines. If water made its way through the fuel system, then it can cause the fuel lines to rust. In the short term, it can create a gas leak that will reduce your cars mileage and be a fire hazard. In the long term, it can lead to a replace of the entire fuel system. Unless you are an expert on cars, the best thing to do would be to have a mechanic remove the water from the fuel lines.

Buy gas from a reputable station. Water in the gas tank often comes from no-name gas stations that either purposely water down their gas to make it last longer or buy cheap gas that is already contaminated with water. Unless you know the station is good, it is best to choose gas stations that have a good reputation.

Warning

  • close You should be careful doing anything with gasoline as it is a fire hazard.

About the Author

Brock Cooper attended Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, Ill. He was a reporter for seven years with a daily in Illinois before branching out into marketing and media relations. He has experience in writing everything from press releases to features on a variety of subjects and forums. His work can be seen in NewsTribune newspaper, Chicago Parent magazine and several websites.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera luxury car - model toy car image by alma_sacra from Fotolia.com