The national cost for a fuel pressure sensor replacement with CarAdvise in 2024 is between $159 and $695 with an average of $339.

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What is a fuel pressure sensor and how does it work?

A fuel pressure sensor is a component of a fuel injection system.

In fuel injected engines, the type used in most vehicles today, gasoline is sprayed into the cylinders to be compressed and ignited in order to cause and harness combustion. In order for all of the cylinders (anywhere from four to eight or more) to work in sync, the fuel injectors must open and close with precise timing and in the right amount so that each cylinder receives the proper amount of fuel for the given engine speed and load condition. The fuel pressure sensor monitors the pressure in the fuel rail that supplies fuel to the injectors. Any drop in pressure that is detected by the sensor is communicated to the engine control module (ECM, the computer that controls engine function) so that the ECM can adjust the fuel pressure accordingly.

Engines with traditional fuel injection typically have one fuel pressure sensor, while those with direct fuel injection have two.


How is a a Fuel Pressure Sensor Replacement done?

The fuel pressure sensor is located on top of your engine, attached to the fuel rail that supplies fuel to the injectors. To replace the sensor, a technician will take the following general steps:

  • Remove the fuse in the fuel pump circuit to disable the fuel pump
  • Depressurize the fuel system, often by starting the engine so that the pressure drops without the fuel pump engaged
  • Disconnect the negative battery terminal to cut power to the vehicle
  • Remove any shields, guards, engine covers, or ducts to gain access to the fuel pressure sensor
  • Remove the wiring connected to the fuel pressure sensor
  • Unscrew and remove the sensor
  • Insert the new sensor and reconnect the wiring
  • Reinstall any shields, guards, covers, or ducts that were removed
  • Reconnect the battery terminal and replace the fuel pump fuse
  • Start the vehicle and verify the repair by allowing the engine to warm up and observing for leaks, as well as using a diagnostic tool to verify proper readings from the sensor

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National average cost of a a Fuel Pressure Sensor Replacement
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How do I know if my vehicle needs a fuel pressure sensor replacement?

Since the fuel pressure sensor is a key component in the operation of your vehicle’s fuel injection system, if it fails, the ECM will no longer be able to adjust fuel pressure to compensate for varying engine speeds and loads, such as when you accelerate or are driving up an incline. Your vehicle likely needs a new fuel pressure sensor if you notice that any of the following are happening:

Drop in fuel economy

Your engine is hard to start or will not start at all

Black smoke is coming from the tailpipe, indicating a rich air/fuel mixture

The engine hesitates upon acceleration or shows signs of running “lean”

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Other questions customers ask

Can you drive with a bad fuel pressure sensor?
Driving with a bad fuel pressure sensor is not recommended. A faulty sensor could lead to anything from minor issues (such as reduced fuel economy) or major problems (such as stalling in traffic). Rich, or worse, lean fuel conditions can result as well, causing engine damage. When the ECM cannot detect or properly read fuel pressure, the engine cannot run as it should, and sometimes it cannot run at all.
Will a bad fuel pressure sensor throw a code?
Yes, a bad fuel pressure sensor will likely generate a diagnostic trouble code. A scan tool would reveal codes such as P0087, P0171, or P0172, and turn on the check engine light.
Can a bad fuel pressure sensor cause bad gas mileage?
One of the symptoms of a failing fuel pressure sensor is reduced fuel economy. So, yes, a bad fuel pressure sensor can cause bad gas mileage, by either causing the engine to run too rich (too much fuel) or too lean (too little fuel).

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