One of the worst troubles that can happen to her Saturn Ion is a bad fuel filter. Once the filter goes bad, it can limit the lot of fuel that enters the engine. There is no fuel, the vehicle will no run at all. V that in mind, many of the symptoms of a bad fuel filter revolve approximately the auto stalling out.

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Fuel filters have actually been making a rearward progression for the critical 50 years, literally. Because that a lengthy time, you’d discover it under the hood. The looked prefer a small pill, and it would certainly be quick and easy to replace. This was in the era of carbureted vehicles.

Things started to change in the 80’s. Fuel injection requires greater fuel pressure. Greater fuel pressure meant the a more robust fuel filter would certainly be required. This expected the fuel filter to be no longer left under the hood. The was put in the steel fuel line, between the gas tank and engine bay.

These fuel filters were much more reliable, but they likewise were tougher come change. Repairing them way getting under the vehicle and also disconnecting stole fittings. It yes, really still isn’t that daunting to transaction with, as long as you offer the auto a couple of minutes because that the fuel push to walk down.

The an excellent news is, no matter just how old your Ion is, the symptom of a negative fuel filter space universal. That doesn’t issue if it’s in-tank or in-line. And, fuel filters are cheap.

Signs that a poor Fuel Filter: Saturn Ion

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Typical Fuel Filter

There room physical indications that you can feel as soon as your Ion’s fuel filter is clogging. Before taking something apart, inspect to view if her engines computer system has any kind of trouble codes saved in it.

The engine might throw a P0087 problem code. This trouble code detects the the fuel rail/system press is also low. Any kind of trouble codes the exist might be a clue. Sometimes when there is low fuel pressure, friend may also get an oxygen sensor connected trouble code as well. The real concern with diagnosing a poor fuel filter is the it resembles numerous other vehicular concerns in regards to symptoms.

Here room the most common symptoms of a bad fuel filter in her Saturn Ion:

Sputtering Under Load

The only means that you space going to recognize that her Ion’s fuel filter might be going out is the it is no longer letting sufficient fuel v to keep the engine to run under a hefty load, or in ~ high-speed. Typically, if you space heading up a hill (or accelerating) the engine may start come feel like it is just running the end of steam. That’s what it feels like with a bad fuel filter.

Now, a negative fuel filter can also feel a hell of a lot favor a poor catalytic converter. Both problems will make the motor feel favor it is running out of wind when you struggle the gas. A poor catalytic converter will not feel as jarring. It’s a smooth lack of power. If you space unsure, inspect out this post on troubleshooting catalytic converters. If you get P0420 or P0430 trouble codes through a scanner, it really well may be the catalytic converter resulting in these symptoms.

Hard to start Engine

One of the best indicators the a clogged fuel filter is going to be that the her Ion is challenging to start. This due to the fact that there’s not sufficient fuel pressure to effectively atomize the fuel as it start the combustion chamber.

If your vehicle is challenging to start, a clogged fuel filter would more than likely not it is in the location to begin looking, particularly if friend are obtaining no trouble password for fuel push or the oxygen sensors.

Instead, we’d recommend acquisition a look at the ignition system first. Regularly it’ll be poor spark plugs, or a negative coil pack.

Engine no Starting

If the fuel filter has become so contaminated that the minimum lot of fuel has actually not to be let with it, the engine won’t start at all.

At the most straightforward of levels your Saturn Ion needs three things to start: Air, fuel, and spark. If any of these points aren’t present, the engine won’t rotate over in ~ all. If there’s to be zero warning the the fuel filter might be going negative (hesitation, difficulty starting, etc) than a clogged fuel filter could not it is in the location to start. It might certainly reason the problem though.

Here’s a great video on using your eyes to diagnose the fuel filter:

It Could additionally be your Ion’s Fuel Pump

A fuel pump that is going out is walk to feel the same as a bad fuel filter. This renders telling if you have a negative fuel pump vs negative fuel filter very challenging.

How execute you tell them apart? A clogged fuel filter will have actually high push on its input side and also low press on its calculation side. They space both walking to reason the exact same hesitation in ~ high rate and challenge starting. The only way to truly tell is to location a fuel pressure gauge on both political parties of the line and also get a analysis from both.

If your auto isn’t starting at all, and also you listen the fuel pump prime that is normally a an excellent indication that the pump is functioning to part capacity. Experimentation your Ion’s fuel press on every side that the pump would be the best way to diagnose this problem.

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A priming fuel pump sounds like a high-pitched whine because that a couple of seconds and also can be heard with a spicy engine appropriate after the ignition vital is turned, but before the starter is engaged.

Conclusion: Saturn Ion bad Fuel Pump

The symptoms of a bad fuel pump match a many other common problems that can occur in the Saturn Ion. Trial and error the filter and pressure on each side the it space going to be the quickest means to dominion it out. If there is anything girlfriend would choose to add, please leave a comment below. Great luck!