Typically, one does not ask questions about their gas caps until a gas cap has gone missing or begun to malfunction. If you are experiencing issues with your check engine light, fuel consumption rate, or fuel cap in general, continue reading to review some frequently asked questions about gas caps that may clear up your confusion and point you in the right direction.
Fuel Cap FAQS
Can I Drive Without a Gas Cap?
Whether connected by a plastic tether or an old-fashioned manual screw-on, there are many reasons why a fuel cap goes missing. Regardless of why you no longer have a gas cap on your car, it is important to understand why you should not drive your vehicle until you have replaced the gas cap.
For starters, you can lose a nominal amount of gasoline to spillage and evaporation. Not only will fuel loss cost you a lot of money and waste your hard-earned paycheck, but what it will also allow moisture and organic debris inside of the gas tank, which can lead to fuel tank damages and costly repairs. It can also pollute the environment.
Furthermore, if you live in a state that requires vehicles to pass an emissions test prior to registration, not having a gas connected to your vehicle can affect this qualification.
Is it Expensive to Replace a Missing Fuel Cap?
If you are missing a fuel cap on your vehicle, the good news is they are inexpensive to replace. Additionally, the labor to install one is both easy and quick. In most cases, you simply attach it on yourself, so you avoid having to pay for labor. The cost of the gas will depend on the make and model of your vehicle, but on average you can expect to pay anywhere from $9 to $15. They come in 55 to 57 mm or 58 to 60 mm options, including the threads.
Can the Gas Cap Cause the Check Engine Light to Come On?
Yes, your fuel cap can cause the check engine light to come on. If the gas cap is not properly screwed on or connected, the vehicle’s computer system will detect this disconnect and trigger the check engine light to illuminate. This is more common in modern vehicles, as older cars may not have this type of automotive technology.
How Do I Know if My Gas Cap is Malfunctioning?
There are many signs to look out for when it comes to detecting a faulty gas cap. One of the first signs that indicate you have a problem with your gas cap is unexplained fuel loss or increased gas consumption. If you’re noticing that you’re going through your fuel much faster than before, it could be that your fuel Is loose or disconnected. Another common sign of a faulty gas cap is lingering gasoline smells. If you are detecting gasoline odors in your vehicle, it could be a sign that your fuel cap is not properly attached.
How Often Should I Replace My Fuel Cap?
Unless your gas cap goes missing, you don’t need to replace it anytime soon. Gas caps are designed to last 50,000 miles or more. So long as you are taking your car in for routine maintenance, you will be immediately notified if there’s ever an issue with your gas cap by your trusted Indianapolis auto mechanic.
Are you experiencing automotive issues that need a quick diagnosis? Contact Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for dealership-level car maintenance and repair services in Indianapolis, Indiana, but at neighborhood prices. Request a free estimate, today.
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