Car Won’t Start after Refuelling: Causes and Fixes

car won’t start after getting fuel

Automobiles are a great and convenient mobility option. From a hatchback to a pickup truck, people can find a suitable vehicle to travel from one place to another. However, even with all the ease vehicles remain prone to damage and issues. Some of the issues can be particularly frustrating as everything seems to be in place. For instance, if a car won’t start after getting fuel, this can be a stressful situation.

A car stuck mid-way is a hassle under any condition. However, when a car won’t start after getting fuel, there may be some underlying problems in the vehicle. We will go through all the reasons a car won’t start after getting fuel alongside some ways to overcome the issue.

Car Won’t Start After Refuelling: Causes and Fixes

A car not starting after refuelling can be a frustrating situation. There are several reasons a car cranks but does not start, or indicates a different issue in the engine. Either way, it is important to know the possible causes of this issue.

That said, let’s now take a look at some of the common causes of why a car won’t start after getting fuel and ways to fix the issues.


check the battery if the car won't start after getting fuel
Damaged or dead battery can also prevent a car from starting

A dead battery can be the culprit behind a car not starting after getting fuel. Additionally, the problem may also arise because of loose battery connections or corroded terminals. In either case, the battery fails to provide the required power to the car, preventing the vehicle from starting.

Look out for signs of a dead battery such as dimming headlights and improper functioning of car electronics. All of these may indicate a battery problem.


There are several effective ways to deal with a dead car battery in such situations. Check the battery for loose connections or corroded terminals. If any of the connections seem out of place or loose, tighten them. Additionally, clean the corroded connections with baking soda or a cleaner.

Try starting the car again and if it doesn’t show any signs of improvement, it might be time to replace the battery.


If a car won’t start after getting fuel, the problem is most likely to lie in the fuel tank. A vehicle’s fuel tank is a complex system containing several valves and vents. The purge valve is an integral part of the system. It stores the fuel vapours in the canister to prevent them from escaping into the atmosphere.

Additionally, it helps prevent fuel gas buildup in the fuel tank. In case of an open or bad purge valve, the proportion of vapours that are supposed to stay in the canister might move in the fuel tank. The fuel mixture becomes too rich to enable and support combustion.


Fixing or replacing a bad Evaporative Emission Control System (EVAP) purge valve requires precision and car knowledge. People unaware of car anatomy might end up doing more damage than good. Therefore, if you see any of the bad purge valve symptoms, it is best to have a mechanic examine your car to identify and fix any issues in the fuel system of the car.


check the fuel pump and replace it if need be
If the fuel filter is damaged or clogged. unwanted particles may enter the fuel pump

Fuel filters are responsible for filtering unwanted particles from the fuel before it goes into the fuel pump. A clogged or bad fuel filter would fail to perform its function. The fuel supply may be disrupted to some extent or unwanted particles might find a way into the fuel pump.

In either case, there are chances of potential damage to the engine. Clogged fuel filters also remain one of the causes of fuel contamination in cars. These can at times also lead to issues like a car won’t start after getting fuel.


Generally, experts advise changing the fuel filters after 100,000 to 120,000 miles. However, it is best to follow the owner’s manual for more effective outcomes. If a fuel filter is badly clogged and prevents the car from starting, it is advisable to replace it at the earliest. Ensure timely maintenance and watch out for bad fuel filter symptoms to avoid a fuel-filter-related problem as a whole.


Another component of the car’s fuel system, the fuel pump can very well be the reason for a car not starting after refuelling. A fuel pump ensures the pumping of a sufficient amount of fuel into the fuel injector. There are several signs of a bad fuel pump such as car not starting or strutting at high speeds.


The fuel pump, like other car components, has a running life. Timely maintenance and replacement help avoid issues related to a fuel pump. However, it is a viable option to know the replacement process in case of an emergency. Just be sure to use the compatible fuel pump and go through the owner’s manual for better understanding.

Other Reasons Why Car Won’t Start After Getting Fuel

check the timing belt if your car wont start after getting fuel
Other reasons such as a damaged timing belt or bad key fob can also cause problems in cars

Besides the aforementioned common reasons, there are some other causes for the issue. Although less likely than the ones mentioned above, it is important to know all the possible reasons. Other possible reasons for a car not starting after refuelling are listed as follows:

  • Broken alternator
  • Faulty security system
  • Unaddressed trouble codes
  • Faulty starter motor or circuit
  • Damaged timing belt
  • Non-working key fob

These are all the reasons why a car won’t start after getting fuel. Automobiles have evolved greatly over the years but they are prone to damages and issues. A car taking long to start or not starting at all can be a frustrating experience but with the aforementioned ways, it is possible to overcome the situation.

Additionally, it is important to follow the car maintenance schedule to avoid untimely wear and tear of parts. Go through these other common car problems and learn some effective ways to overcome them.

Moreover, if your vehicle fails to start even after multiple inspections and repairs, it is a viable option to go for a car change. Browse through these used cars for sale in the UAE and select from a large variety of inspected and road-ready vehicles listed.

Stay tuned to dubizzle’s auto blog to learn how to fix car that won’t start after getting fuel and other related issues.


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