Car switches OFF on slowing down / Going over pumps - IS THE FUEL PUMP GOING BAD

Car is toyota,corolla fielder 2014. It could switch off while slowing down on pumps or on traffic lights stop.The problem started off from nowhere one morning while going to work. The symptoms that manifest just before its turns off  is viloent jerking,then comes that the beeping and all dashboard info and warning lights. Just the same scenerio that happens when you turn your car key to ON,before Ignition.

When it first occured,the thoughts that came to my mind was: 

  • I was running low on fuel and therefore the vehicle didnt have sufficent fuel to run - I fueled up but still problem persisted

  • Ignition System failure- this was doubtful as the car was fairly new

  • Gear box failure- This was dreadful as  any motorist will tell you- Fixing gear problem is costly and you can never be sure whether the vehicle will ever work just like the manufacturer installed gearbox was working.

  • Ignition system issue -This can be fault spark plugs or coils - I did change the sparks but the problem did not resolve.

A week before this  incident the vehicle had just began producing funning wheezing sounds from just below the back seats- This is where the  fuel tank is located in most cars. Inside the fuel  tank,there is a fitted fuel pump- Fuel pump is responsible for pumping fuel to the combustion chambers of the engine. The fuel has to be right amount with right pressure for effective combustion to occur once mixed with air.

I rushed to the mechanic with all this tale signs and he recommended we change the fuel pump as it clearly showed that problem was in there. Accessing the fuel pump of modern cars is a laborius  process. It requires first off all dismantling the entire back seats,followed by uncorking a  bottle top like plastic cover -Which if you do not have the right tools,can  get broken and immerse you into more financial turmoil.

After opening the fuel tank ,we finally accessed the fuel pump-removing it was quite easy just disconnecting the wires and fuel pipes and that was all. The fuel pump is contained in a plastic housing -Simply said,the fuel pump is a system composed of:

  • Plastic casing

  • Fuel filter -A mess like  fabric

  • A gauge connected to buoyant plastic bubble - For your fuel level reading.

The entire assembly can cost you upwards of up to  USD 300 depending on what car model you have - Mine was a toyota vitz and it costs only USD 70. Before rushing to the auto shop, I figured out that the entire thing was not faulty and only the tiny cylindrical pump contained within the housing could be faulty. In my town I can easily acquire any x-japan spare part for any car,so I decided to buy the pump only without the casing.

 We then removed the old pump and in inserted a new one - Put the entire thing in and off we went for a test drive.



  • To maintain your fuel pump, always ensure you fill up. Fuel acts as a coolant to the fuel pump to protect the internal componets from over heating.

Be conscious of the type and place you fuel - Dirty fuels have been know to clog the pump internal components hence killing it prematurely.

The Motoring Clinic

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