Updated at: 12-08-2022 - By: Lucas

One of the most frustrating things that may happen to a car owner is when the engine won’t start. When your vehicle fails to start when you need it the most, it can be quite inconvenient. For your car to start, there are a number of components that must function correctly.

It could happen if one of them fails. However, there are a few possibilities as to why your automobile won’t start after filling up with gas.

How Does A Cars Ignition Work

Car Won't Start After Getting Gas

Finding out what happens in the engine of your automobile when you turn it on will help explain why it won’t start after filling up with gas.

When you turn the key, a number of components work together to get your vehicle moving. The first thing to react is the starter motor. The pistons in the cylinder move as a result of the crankshaft being turned. Fuel and air are used to power this movement. The engine begins to run when the spark from the plugs is mixed with this.

When it’s about to start, you might hear your engine straining and cranking. When the crankshaft is starting up, this is the sound you hear. Fuel ignites as the crankshaft moves, and the engine begins to run on its own power.

The starting motor provides the initial power needed to start the engine. The fuel pump is responsible for delivering the fuel to the engine. The battery provides electricity to the started motor.

It’s now clear how many parts work together to get your engine running. And each of those components is as vital.

Reasons Why Your Car Won’t Start After Getting Gas?

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Only a few of the many parts that go into starting your car have anything to do with fuel lines. Fueling affects only a few parts of the vehicle. This eliminates one of the possible causes of your automobile not starting after a gas fill-up.

Take a look at some of the possible causes of your automobile not starting after a gas fill-up. It might be any one of these, or even a combination of them.

Not Closing The Cap After Refuelling

This is a more common mistake than most of us realize.. Forgetting to replace the cap may not have any noticeable consequences right away, but over time, it can cause serious damage to your engine.

If you forget to replace the cap, you may see the check engine light come on. This can easily be misconstrued for another internal problem, resulting in a state of worry on your part.

In light of this, why is the cap so crucial?

While driving, you may think that the fuel cap is solely there to restrict the fuel from leaking out. The gasses inside the tank are sealed when you replace the cap. Extra pressure is created by these gases, allowing the fuel to be pumped into the combustion chamber.

Gases will leak if the cap isn’t on. As a result, the tank’s internal pressure will be reduced.

It’s possible that your automobile won’t start after you fill it up with gas.

Even if it does happen, it won’t appear for a long time. Nevertheless, if your car’s check engine light comes on after refilling, you should check the gas cap first before concluding that the source of the light is something else.

Dirty Or Clogged Fuel Filter

The job of the fuel filter, as the name implies, is a straightforward one. It removes the dirt and debris from the gasoline by filtration. You may not be able to see it, but the gas you put in is littered with little pieces of dirt and other debris. This causes a blockage in the fuel filter when these substances are filtered out at the fuel filter.

Fuel flow is slowed when a clog forms in its path. You won’t be able to acquire the fuel your engine requires as a result. It could lead to a gradual decrease in the engine’s performance, eventually causing it to shut down.

If your fuel filter is clogged or dirty, you may notice any of these symptoms. You may notice that your engine isn’t accelerating as quickly as it used to and that it produces a lot of smoke when you put it in gear. There will be a strong smell of exhaust fumes.

Your engine will begin to misfire as the problem worsens. Your car’s fuel efficiency will continue to deteriorate. Eventually, your fuel filter will be unable to perform its intended function. In doing so, the engine will become infested with dirt and debris. The engine may be harmed as a result.

Can This Cause Your Car Not To Start After Refuelling?

If you run out of gas, or if your automobile has been sitting for a while before you refuel, this can happen. Even if you refuel, the fuel will not reach the engine if the clog is entirely blocking the fuel path.

In the absence of furl in the combustion chamber, the engine may heave and crank, but it will not begin to run. It is possible to start a car with a working battery, but if you don’t have any fuel, the chain reaction won’t operate.

How To Avoid This Problem?

Keep an eye out for signs that your gasoline filter is clogged or unclean. Get your fuel filter cleaned if you discover it is unclean.

The fuel filter should be cleaned or replaced every ten thousand miles or a year in most cases. There are a variety of factors that go into calculating this statistic, though. Every year, inspect and clean your gasoline filter.

Fuel Pump Failure

One of the most common causes of a car not starting after a gas fill-up is this.

It is the pump that pressurizes the fuel in your gas tank and delivers it to the engine of your car. The gas you just injected into the engine will not be able to flow if the fuel pump fails.

Cooling the fuel pump is necessary. This pump can get very hot when it is working, so the petrol in your tank functions as a coolant for it. Maintaining a stable pump temperature is made easier by the heat-absorbing properties of this component.

It’s difficult for your gasoline to absorb much heat from the pump while it’s low. Overheating of a gasoline pump will result from this. Although it may not instantly fail due to overheating, the quick drop in temperature when you refill the tank with gas can damage the fuel pump.

The car will be difficult to start as a result of this. This is because the fuel pump is unable to supply the engine with the correct amount of fuel. The likelihood is that you’ll ultimately get the engine running, though To start the engine, you’ll need to use the fuel pump several times before it finally delivers enough fuel.

Symptoms Of A Failed Fuel Pump

No engine works flawlessly just because it is running. When driving, you’ll notice the impacts of a failing fuel pump, even if the engine starts. You may notice additional symptoms if the gasoline pump is to blame for your car’s difficulty starting after refueling.

The whining sound that the fuel pump makes while you drive is one of the most obvious signs of a problem. Wailing sounds can be caused by low fuel levels, filthy gas, or an inoperable pump.

After refueling, whining noises cannot be caused by low fuel levels. So either the fuel is tainted or the pump is defective. You should have your fuel filter and fuel pump checked if you hear this noise.

At high speeds, the engine may start sputtering if the fuel pump fails. Acceleration may cause engine sputters as well. If your fuel pump is malfunctioning, it may lose power when your engine is under stress. This is due to the engine’s inability to get enough fuel in.

In addition to these symptoms, you’ll notice a decrease in fuel economy.

Your fuel pump may be faulty if you observe any of these symptoms along with the main problem, which is that your car won’t start after you fill it up with petrol.

How To Diagnose A Faulty Fuel Pump

As a precautionary measure, it’s important to know whether or not your fuel pump is defective in order to accurately diagnose the problem.

Fuel pressure is the best indicator. There should be no problems with fuel pressure if the pump is functioning properly. If it doesn’t meet your expectations, your fuel pump is faulty. The voltage delivery to the pump is frequently to blame for this. Fuel pressure will be lower if the pump is receiving low voltage.

The fuel pump is most likely to blame if voltage is not an issue. The gasoline pump must be replaced in this situation. Fortunately, changing the fuel pump is not a difficult or expensive process. With the right instructions, you should be able to complete the task on your own.

Purge Control Valve Failure

The Evaporative Emission Control system, of which the purge control valve is a part, is also known as the EVAP system.

The charcoal canister is where the fuel vapors are temporarily stored by the EVAP system. Your vehicle’s emissions are regulated and controlled by the EVAP system.

Using the purge control valve is critical to the procedure. It ensures that the EVAP system’s gasoline vapors are drawn into the engine’s vacuum.

When the purge control valve is open, it fails. When the engine is running and the valve is open, a fume is released instead of stopping the passage of vapor when the valve is closed. The engine is flooded with extra vapor.

Air must be present in the correct proportion for the fuel to ignite. Fuel vapor takes up all the space in the engine, leaving no room for air. It is impossible to ignite a car when the engine is completely filled with fuel vapors and there isn’t enough room for O2.

The charcoal canister could be contaminated by additional fumes from refueling. Purge valves are essential for regulating flow. Without them, there is no way to do so As a result, a faulty purge valve will prevent the engine from starting. However, you should be able to start the engine at some point in the future.

Symptoms Of  A Faulty Purge Valve

To continue driving and overlook the problem just because you got your car started is a mistake. When you go to refill again, you’re likely to have the same issue. So you’ll need to get a new purge valve for your car. Is there a way to tell if your purge valve is broken?

Purge valves reduce fuel efficiency even further. The purge valve failure would cause a rough idle as a distinct symptom. This is due to the fact that your engine will consume more fuel than necessary even if you are just sitting there. As a result, you should expect a bumpy idle.

Engine performance will suffer as a result of this as well. In order to get the best performance out of your engine, you need to have the right amount of air and gasoline. Increasing the fuel volume necessitates increasing the airflow as well.

As a result, most high-performance automobiles use a fuel injection system in conjunction with a supercharger or turbocharger. The purpose of this is to increase the volume of air entering the engine, which will aid in the burning of the extra fuel. The engine will not work correctly if the balance is out of whack.

A check engine light will also be lit if the purge valve fails. When you suspect that your automobile won’t start after you fill it up with gas, you need to get the purge valve replaced. If you’re willing to put in the time and effort, you can perform the process yourself.

How To Deal With A Car That Won’t Start After Getting Gas

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These are the most prevalent causes of an automobile that won’t start after refueling, as stated above. Because of this, you may need to adopt a different approach depending on the situation.

You can still start your automobile after refueling even if the cap is left off. However, if you continue to drive with the cap off, you may have difficulties.

You’ll need to replace the cap because the check engine light will come on as well. Fortunately, a new cap may be purchased if the old one is lost.

After refueling, your automobile will rarely fail to start due to a clogged fuel filter. You won’t have to worry about clogging up your fuel filters in the short term. It’s only going to get worse from here on out. If you notice any of these early warning signs, don’t hesitate to get it looked out! If you keep ignoring it, you may wind up with a blockage in the pipeline.

Get your fuel filter cleaned or replaced if you notice any of the following symptoms: Your engine will be restored to its former grandeur as a result of this.

Most Likely Cause

In most cases, the fuel pump or the purge valve is to blame when your automobile won’t start after a refuel. Both suffer from symptoms that are strikingly similar.

But it’s not difficult to tell them apart. If you hear a whining sound, the purge valve is most likely to blame. If, on the other hand, you detect a strong gas smell, it is likely the result of a malfunctioning fuel pump.

It doesn’t matter which one you have, you shouldn’t be driving around with either of these issues. To drive with them, you’ll have a lot of difficulty. Even if you think you can handle driving with a defective fuel pump or purge valve, the engine will suffer a great deal of damage. The sooner you get it checked out and repaired, the better.


How do you know if your car won’t start after you fill it up with gas?

How Much Does It Cost To Replace A Faulty Fuel Pump?

Based on the brand and model of a vehicle, fuel pump prices might vary greatly. Most high-end vehicles have more expensive fuel pumps. Between $180 to $1300, you can buy a fuel pump.

The cost of a fuel pump for a basic automobile is around $200 to $300. For a new one, expect to pay between $350 and $500 plus work. As a result, you can save money on labor charges by replacing your own gasoline pump.

How Much Does It Cost To Replace A Faulty Purge Valve?

Unlike a fuel pump, a purge valve’s value is not affected by the brand and model of the vehicle.

On average, a professional can replace a purge valve for between $120 and $170. The valve is priced between $75 and $110. There is a wide range in labor costs, from $45 to $55. The cost of replacing a malfunctioning purge value will be near to the average regardless of the make and model of your vehicle.

Is It Beneficial To Have A Full Tank Of Fuel All The Time?

In the long term, having a full tank of gas will be beneficial to your vehicle. One of the advantages of having a full tank of fuel is that it helps keep the fuel pump at a stable temperature. Coolant: The fuel functions as a coolant.

Almost all of a fuel tank is void. Air fills the rest of the space because it isn’t a vacuum. Water vapor is present in the air. The gasoline tank could be damaged if this condenses. A full tank of fuel, on the other hand, minimizes the harm caused by stale air in the tank.

How To Start A Car With A Bad Purge Valve?

The engine is flooded with gas fumes due to a faulty purge valve. For your engine to properly burn the fuel, you’ll need a larger supply of air to do so It won’t start unless you get additional air into the engine.

Consequently, depressing the throttle will increase the intake of air. As additional air enters, hopefully it will ignite the flooded engine’s gasoline.

Where Can You Buy A Fuel Cap?

The use of fuel caps is quite widespread. You may simply find a cap online if you’re seeking for one. Any car parts store should be able to help you out if you’re in a hurry.

Should You Clean Or Replace A Dirty Fuel Filter?

It’s important to know which fuel filters can be cleaned. It is impossible to clean a fuel filter that uses a paper filter. This signifies that your gasoline filter has to be replaced.

How Often Should You Replace Your Fuel Filter?

Replace your fuel filter every two years or 24, 000 miles if you don’t notice any symptoms of a dirty filter. The cleanliness of the fuel is the most important factor.


It might be frustrating to try to start a car with an unwilling engine. This is especially true if you’ve just refueled your vehicle. Your automobile may not start after you fill it up with gas for several reasons.

The majority of these issues can be resolved with relative ease. These fixes will cost less than $150 in parts. Fortunately, you don’t have to spend money on labor to get the job done. Do-it-yourself remedies for many of these issues are possible.

The replacement of the purge valve is the most difficult of the aforementioned issues. The best course of action is to have a purge valve replacement performed by a professional if you are not familiar with or comfortable performing auto repairs. You may get your automobile fixed for less than $300 even if you pay a professional to do it.

There’s no need to worry about your automobile starting up after refilling. Try to get it corrected as soon as possible, as it’s usually a simple matter. When something goes wrong with your car, don’t ignore it or let it fester. If you continue to drive around with the problem, you run the risk of causing significant damage.