Fuel Tank Cap for auto

Body auto parts: Fuel Tank Cap

How to detect the fuel tank cap failure

Cursory inspection of the fuel tank cap should be done at every refueling. More comprehensive examination is advised to be performed at least once a year. As a first step, you should assess the threaded connection state: if the thread is stripped, and the cap spins when you try to close the fuel tank, it has to be replaced. Then examine the valve: there must be no rust or dirt on it. Make sure the sealing element is elastic and there are no cracks on its surface.

If the cap is equipped with a lock, try to insert the key and turn it a few times in both directions. It should get in and rotate easily in the lock, without jamming.

More comprehensive examination of the fuel tank cap can be carried out on a special test bench at a service station.

You may identify that the fuel tank cap requires  to be checked, by the following symptoms:

  • the «Check Engine» indicator lights on the instrument panel;
  • a prolonged peculiar sound is heard when the cap is opened;
  • warping of the fuel tank;
  • loss of engine power after heating-up;
  • engine detonation.

Causes of the fuel tank cap failure

Contamination is the most frequent cause why the cap fails. The accumulated dirt not only entails jamming of the valves, but also leads to disruption of the sealing components, and  promotes premature corrosion of the cap spring and the valve metal elements as well.

The threaded connection faults are among frequent failures too. Typically, they occur due to excessively intense force applied when trying to screw in the part, or its low quality.

In caps equipped with locks, the internal mechanism of the lock can be damaged because of careless operation or the use of a warped key. The lock jamming can occur due to usage of an unsuitable agent for greasing it.

Repair and replacement of the fuel tank cap

Repair of the fuel tank cap consists in cleaning its components from deposits and replacing the worn out gasket. You can also repair a faulty lock by restoring worn out plates. In case of more major damage, you have to replace the part.

The installation of a new cap is fairly simple. What is significant is that the component is properly chosen: its thread and diameter should correspond to the fuel tank filler neck, and the valve should activate at the pressure specified by the car manufacturer.

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