If your fuel pump is totally busted, then you're not going anywhere, but luckily there are a number of ways to diagnose any potential problems early on. If your vehicle exhibits any of the signs listed below, take it to a good mechanic right away, instead of risking being stranded when it packs up entirely.

The Engine Misfires at High Speeds

An engine which stutters when the vehicle is being driven at high speeds is probably the most common early indication of fuel pump trouble. Engine misfires will cause the vehicle to noticeably jerk, and are due to a worn out fuel pump failing to supply the engine with a consistent stream of fuel at a constant pressure, though it can often be caused by a spark plug or plug wire which needs replacing, or by water build-up in the petrol tank. In any case, the vehicle should be taken to a mechanic in order to figure out what needs to be done.

Remember, your car may jerk from misfires for a mile or so and then stay normal for the next ten miles, but don't make the mistake of thinking that this means the problem has gone away.

It Has Trouble Starting

A pretty clear indication of a major problem—you'll hear the engine sputter and jerk as it fails to be supplied correctly with fuel. Sometimes the engine will not catch at all, although you'll still be able to rev the car. Of course, there are a number of reasons that this can occur, and not all of them indicate a dying fuel pump. If your vehicle can start, but does so grudgingly, take it for a servicing to see what's up.

You Experience Trouble on Tough Terrain

Aging parts, just like in a human, tend to play up most when they're asked to carry stress they're not used to. If you're driving your car up a steep incline, or having to change speeds quickly and frequently, the added pressure on the fuel pump can get to be too much. This too will manifest itself in jerking motions as the pump sputters and fails to properly provide fuel.

Surges in Speed

Unlikely but true, a malfunctioning fuel pump can also provide the opposite effect to misfiring. If your car suddenly picks up speed for short bursts, without you doing anything, it might be because the fuel pump has become too worn. Surging occurs when the pump doesn't draw enough electricity to remain proper pressure, resulting in sudden bursts of fuel instead of a steady stream.

It's notoriously difficult to decide when and if a fuel pump needs replacing without a full inspection from a qualified mechanic, so it's important to see one such as H.I.M Spares if your vehicle begins making these signs. Assuming another part is to blame will mean wasting money on something which isn't the real problem, and may leave you stranded when the pump finally gives up the ghost.