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Hi,

Anyone know that if you leave last minute to fill up the gas tank during winter times will it hurt the car ? I sometimes fill it when the low fuel light is on!!
 

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In a word... yes it will hurt the car.
It can do several things over time.

#1 - regardless of temp the fuel pump will need to work harder to pump the small bit of fuel out of the tank and keep the vacum to keep the bit of fuel going. I have expereince with this as I needed a fuel pump with my last car because I kept driving it to empty running on fumes.

#2 Less gas in the tank will produce condensation in the tank in cold weather, due to maore air in the tank leaveing the tank prone to more condensation... essentially adding water to the gas and you do not want watery gas or water entering the motor.

#3 this same condensation building up in the tank and fuel could freeze and cause gas line freeze therefore causing your car to not start and to leave you stranded.

Again all this stuff happens over time, once and a while it happens but try to not do it in the winter.
As a general rule in the winter I try to not go below half a tank to a quarter tank.

Hope that helps.
 

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If that was true I would half to go get gas a few blocks after leaving a gas station. (Since my Low Fuel Light kicks on all the time regardless).
 

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anth_97 said:
In a word... yes it will hurt the car.
It can do several things over time.

#1 - regardless of temp the fuel pump will need to work harder to pump the small bit of fuel out of the tank and keep the vacum to keep the bit of fuel going. I have expereince with this as I needed a fuel pump with my last car because I kept driving it to empty running on fumes.

#2 Less gas in the tank will produce condensation in the tank in cold weather, due to maore air in the tank leaveing the tank prone to more condensation... essentially adding water to the gas and you do not want watery gas or water entering the motor.

#3 this same condensation building up in the tank and fuel could freeze and cause gas line freeze therefore causing your car to not start and to leave you stranded.

Again all this stuff happens over time, once and a while it happens but try to not do it in the winter.
As a general rule in the winter I try to not go below half a tank to a quarter tank.

Hope that helps.
Wow. Guess somebody forgot to tell my truck and my old Grand Prix all these horror stories.

180,000 miles / 12 years and 120,000 miles / 10 years of running them to empty before filling up and none of this has come to pass.

Condensation in a "sealed" system? Maybe.
Hard on the fuel pump? Not hardly - they push the fuel, not pull it.
 

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Only consideration is running the tank dangerously empty or running out of fuel all the time. The fuel itself cools the pump in the tank and if there is no fuel they will burnup quickly.

Otherwise..no issues.
 

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Working at auto parts stores for many years untill recently, the only real downfall is this, you will always get particles in your gas (hence the need for a fuel filter) however the fuel filter doesnt have a bypass valve like an oil filter so when its cloged it doesnt allow fuel to pass... those particles will settle at the bottom of the tank, especially the lower the fuel in the car, so when you let the gas get to low the pump will pick up particles and it will clog your fuel filter faster. Now dont get me wrong, there are alot of other conditions to this happening such as the age of the car, quatlity of place you get gas,etc... Also gasoline in small amounts can and will freeze, so its not always condensation causing the freezing. To make a long story even longer, its not going to kill you to let it run low, but it's not something Id always make a habit of IMO of course!!
 
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