Car Fuel Gauge Showing Empty Tank
Automobile Maintenance

What Happens When Your Car Runs out of Gas

Owning a car is a very common part of life. In fact, it’s hard to imagine functioning in the modern world without this form of transportation.

It’s no secret that owning a car is a big responsibility. After all, they’re expensive and require a certain amount of regular maintenance.

If you’re like most drivers, you probably give very little thought to the gasoline that you put in your car. But have you ever thought about what happens when your car runs out of gas?

This article takes a look at the physical impact of letting your gas tank go empty. Keep reading to discover insight into why you should never let this happen.

The Vehicle Will Stall

If you’ve ever fun out of gas before, you know it’s a terrible feeling. Many people have had the experience of ignoring the fuel light. Every once in a while you push your luck too far, and you end up on the side of the road.

Your car will literally stop running. You might feel it jerk once or twice, or it will simply die, forcing you to steer it onto the shoulder out of traffic.

Brakes Might Feel Different

You will likely notice an immediate difference in your brakes. The brakes won’t necessarily stop working, but the brake pedal will feel much harder to push down.

This is due to the fact that your brakes use hydraulics to transfer power to the brake pads. But the moment your car shuts down, you’ll lose power to a number of features, including the hydraulics.

Steering Will Become Harder

You’ll also notice an immediate difference in your steering wheel. Because when the engine dies, you’ll lose power to your steering wheel, thus you’ll have to use plenty of muscle to steer it safely out of traffic.

It Could Damage Your Fuel Pump

It’s important to keep in mind that running out of gas can also cause damage to various parts of your car. This includes the fuel pump.

The purpose of the fuel pump is to transfer fuel from your gas tank to the engine. But when you run out of gas, the pump will no longer remain properly lubricated, causing it to overheat.

The Fuel Injectors Could Clog

When the fuel level in your gas tank gets too low, impurities that have settled at the bottom of the tank, such as airborne debris, can clog the fuel lines. This will ultimately lead to clogged fuel injectors, which are the tiny nozzles responsible for spraying gas into your engine.

What to Do When This Happens

In order to prevent damage to your engine, you should refill your tank as soon as possible. Then prime the fuel pump by turning the key to the “On” and “Off” positions several times without starting the engine. This will help remove air from the fuel lines.

It’s also a good idea to have a trained mechanic clean the fuel injectors in order to restore fuel power to the engine.

A Guide to What Happens When Your Car Runs Out of Gas

The more you understand about the car you drive, the better. That’s why it’s important to know what happens when your car runs out of gas.

Keep reading to discover more great automotive tips and advice.