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Old 07-05-2013, 07:23 PM   #1
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Gas gauge problems?

I know this has been discussed in another thread.. but my question is slightly different, so hear me out!

I picked up my '13 SE about two months ago. I freaking love this little car! Great acceleration, well-behaved on the highway, and getting ~30mpg on a green engine in mostly in-city driving is impressive to say the least. But herein lies my problem..

When I first got my car, I made sure to pay attention to the fuel gauge- it's one of my OCD's, to know what kind of mileage to expect out of a tank. Every car I have owned has usually gotten around 100 miles to a quarter tank- less if I'm aggressive. This car was no exception, 'till about two weeks ago. Filled the car up with about 1/4 tank of fuel left, and drove for the next few days with no problem, except I noticed I wasn't burning hardly any fuel, as far as the gauge was concerned- I had about 100 miles on the tank and the needle hadn't budged off of the F mark. Thinking that maybe I was just getting AWESOME mileage, I unnecessarily filled up- took something like 3-4 gallons to fill it back up. What!? This should mean the gauge is at or around the 3/4 mark..

Make a long story short and fast forward to today, and this has happened over two more tanks. Took it to the dealer, who drained 5 gallons out of a full(ish) tank, said that the computer was showing 49% remaining fuel, and the gauge was working properly. Pumped back in the fuel, and the gauge read correctly. I picked it up from the dealer, and it was spot on- dealer said there was nothing wrong and sent me on my way.

Has anyone else noticed this with their 13's? Typically speaking, how many miles can you go per quarter tank with your vehicles? This same issue seemed to be pretty common with the 2012's based on what I've read here, due to a bad vacuum purge solenoid in the engine. Does anyone know if this was corrected on the 2013's? Just trying to gather some more information before I unnecessarily piss off my service department by making this a big issue. A reliable fuel gauge is kind of a must with me..


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Old 07-05-2013, 07:57 PM   #2
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I absolutely hate the gas gauge on this car along with the miles to e. My previous car I could easily drive until I had a 10th of a gallon left in the tank easily. This car I have no idea because the gauge and miles to e are meaningless.

But anyways here is how mine goes with mostly highway driving.

Needle on Full = ~106 miles
Needle on 3/4 = ~202 miles 96 miles diff
Needle on 1/2 = ~266 miles 64 miles diff
Needle on 1/4 = ~330 miles 64 miles diff
Needle on E = ~362 miles 32 miles diff

On E a fuel up = ~11 gallons

I have ~4200 miles on my car currently.

A couple weeks ago my low fuel light did not come on until I reached 33 miles to E which went down to 2 miles in less than 10 miles.
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Old 07-05-2013, 08:06 PM   #3
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I have '12 Focus, and I've noticed the meter does not budge at all until I travel about ~130 km (~80 mi), then it starts to gradually go down.

I don't think this is a problem specific to the Focus only. EVERY car I've ever driven ranging from Toyota's to Mercedes'... If you FILL the tank up, it rides slightly over F and does not budge until you drive for a good while. I think it mostly has to do with the fuel unit taking time to adjust to the fuel levels that are actually in the tank...

...Unless every car I've driven has a broken gauge.

I hope this helps.
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:12 AM   #4
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I think part of the problem is that you can get considerably more than the tank's 12.4 gallon capacity in if you try it squeeze in the last bit. This extra gasoline will be burned before you get to the 3/4 gauge mark, making it seem economy in the first part of the tank is exceptional.
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:33 AM   #5
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I have noted at times that the fuel gauge will stay at full for a long time. IIRC it always seems to reach 3/4 of a tank with around 100 miles on the tank.

I will say that this gauge seem more realistic then the gas gauge on my Contours. The 1st 1/4 tank will take a long time to "use". The needle then drops like a rock through the next 1/2 tank. Then the last 1/4 tank goes about as slow as the first.
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Old 07-06-2013, 11:08 AM   #6
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i need to put a gas can in the trunk.. i dont like seeing 60 km to empty and the light on.. that is like 3 days of driving to work for me...

I prefer to fill up as few times as possible and 3 days means i can sometimes wait till the next week to get gas.
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Old 07-06-2013, 11:45 AM   #7
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I've noticed this on every car I've ever owned. No fuel gauge is ever exact. I'm usually over 100 miles before the needle starts dropping. My last car was the same. The car before that was the same. All different manufacturers.
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Old 07-06-2013, 04:17 PM   #8
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Another huge annoyance for me is that "0" km to Empty means I've got another 100 km to go... I think... If I fill when the car says "0" km to empty I can only put <40 liters in and if the tank is actually full when the pump kicks out that means I've still got another 7+ liters which means about another 100 km left driving IN THE CITY. I understand that they don't want to be held responsible if someone runs out of gas but this is rediculous. Needless to say I don't start thinking about filling up until the car says that it's empty and the gas warning light annoys me for quite a while which could be dangerous if I just start ignoring it altogether in the future.

YMMV or course.
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Old 07-06-2013, 05:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowcord View Post
Another huge annoyance for me is that "0" km to Empty means I've got another 100 km to go... I think... If I fill when the car says "0" km to empty I can only put <40 liters in and if the tank is actually full when the pump kicks out that means I've still got another 7+ liters which means about another 100 km left driving IN THE CITY. I understand that they don't want to be held responsible if someone runs out of gas but this is rediculous. Needless to say I don't start thinking about filling up until the car says that it's empty and the gas warning light annoys me for quite a while which could be dangerous if I just start ignoring it altogether in the future.

YMMV or course.
have you ran the gauge "distance to 0" to 0??

i find that if i put gas in when the light comes on i can get 41 L in the tank and the distance to 0 usually reads 60 km. this seems to line up with my 9.8L/100km i tend to get on my commute (47 ish L tank ).

So 0 would realy be 0.

as i said i should put a can of gas in the trunk and find out....
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Old 07-06-2013, 05:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redzone View Post
have you ran the gauge "distance to 0" to 0??

i find that if i put gas in when the light comes on i can get 41 L in the tank and the distance to 0 usually reads 60 km. this seems to line up with my 9.8L/100km i tend to get on my commute (47 ish L tank ).

So 0 would realy be 0.

as i said i should put a can of gas in the trunk and find out....
It's at 0 right now and I plan to go another ~10 km before I fill it up. I've been getting between 7.8 and 8.5 L/100km my last several tanks. I've ran it down past 0 by 50 km and I've never put more than 42 litres in.

I may have to get my dealer to look at my tank sensor or ECU or whatever determines how full the tank is. The tanks in these things are stupidly small and it "lying" about how empty it is really frustrates me.

Last edited by yellowcord; 07-06-2013 at 06:14 PM. Reason: Grammar
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