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What Are the Consequences of Running Empty on Fuel?

There’s nothing more nerve-wracking than seeing the low gas warning light come on your dashboard, especially if it happens in an unfamiliar area or somewhere with no gas station in sight. If you don’t want to catch yourself in this stressful scenario, we urge you to get in the habit of filling up before the gas light comes on. Being stuck without fuel isn’t the only downside of running your gas tank empty. In fact, various problems can arise within your car’s internal system as a result. 

Why Should You NOT Run Your Fuel Tank Empty

  1. Danger and Costs of Being Stranded. It doesn’t take an expert to understand that being stranded is one of the worst situations a driver can be in. In some cases, you might be able to get assistance from a friend or family. However, if no one can help you where you are, you’d have to pay for a tow.
  2. Catalytic Converter Issues. Your catalytic converter is a valuable part of your car’s exhaust system. Right before you guzzle up the last bit of gas and stall, your catalytic converter will take some damage.
  3. Overheating Fuel Pump. Your fuel pump is almost always submerged in fuel in the tank, as its job is to send the fuel out of the tank. When it gets closer to empty, the fuel pump can overheat, leading to wear and tear.
  4. Clogged Fuel Pump. Another problem that can occur with the fuel pump is debris buildup. There is usually a bed of bits that sit at the bottom of your gas tank. When the fuel pump is trying to guzzle up the last bit of your gas, any debris in the tank can get sucked through the pump. Consequently, this can be your fuel pump.

While some of these consequences don’t post significant threats to your safety, it can hurt your vehicle and require an additional cost to fix. However, you can avoid all of the worries if you simply fill up early on. If you need any automotive fuel services, our specialists at Barney Brothers would be happy to do the job!