Understanding each of your truck’s major systems is one of the biggest steps you can take to protect your investment. That means understanding when to change vital fluids like coolant and oil, but it also means stepping up for less well-known issues like fuel filter replacement. Neglecting the fuel system can lead to some pretty pronounced issues in the long run, but they can mostly be avoided with the right maintenance.
Introduction to Ford F150 Fuel Pump System
Your Ford F150 uses a relatively standard fuel pump design. An OEM Ford F150 fuel pump is often manufactured by Ford itself and not outsourced, but Motorcraft is also a manufacturer for some models and years. You can also find aftermarket pumps that exceed the manufacturer’s original specs for many model years.
The pump itself is designed to provide years of service, but the fuel filter should be replaced every 40,000 to 80,000 miles. A clogged filter can cause the pump to overwork in an attempt to deliver the right amount of fuel, which contributes to early pump failure. Clogs are most often caused by using a fuel filter well beyond its recommended replacement date.
The pump provides the mechanical action that moves fuel from the tank through the lines to the fuel injectors. It works with the injectors and ECU to provide the right amount for your vehicle’s current needs as you drive and conditions change.
Fuel Pump Maintenance and Troubleshooting
Regular fuel system cleaning can also help keep things running as expected. Cleaners remove buildup that causes clogs in the injectors and fuel line, but you need to be aware of which one you are using. Fuel injector cleaners are less expensive, they do a good job of removing buildup from the injectors that could contribute to clogs, and they can be used as needed.
Fuel system cleaners work on the entire fuel system, from the tank to the injectors. They can be used regularly but should not be overused, and the recommended timing of your cleaning sessions should conform with the specific cleaner you use. If you keep your fuel system well-maintained, you are very unlikely to need to replace the fuel pump. It’s more common to replace the alternator for Ford F150 than it is to replace a well-maintained fuel pump.
If the fuel pump does start to fail in some way, there are very reliable signs. They can point to any part of fuel delivery failing, though, so the signs you notice are just a starting point.
- Decreased fuel efficiency
- Engine misfires
- Acceleration problems
- Decreased engine power
- Problems starting
A diagnostic code reader can tell you if the issue is related to any sensors or other components. The fuel pump has its own code too, P0230. This code can mean the filter is clogged and needs replacement or the pump is faulty, but it does eliminate the other parts of the fuel system.
Order Your Next Fuel Filter Replacement
Having the right supplies on hand is the best way to make sure your maintenance gets done. If you are due to order automatic transmission fluid and other supplies for a seasonal tune-up and you have not replaced your fuel filter in the last couple years, it’s time to add it to the list.