Fuel System Loses Pressure


Asked by Jul 28, 2012 at 12:51 AM about the 2003 Chevrolet S-10 2 Dr LS Standard Cab SB

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2003 Chevy S-10 Pick Up with the 4 cylinder & auto trans. Whenever I start it I must "cycle" the key 2 or 3
times to prime the fuel system. If I don't it cranks a very long time before starting.  Is there a check valve in the
fuel system? Otherwise the truck runs fine. No misfiring & has plenty of power.  The truck does have 274,000 miles
on it. I haven't replaced the fuel filter yet. Given the cost of around $65.00 could the check valve be incorporated
within the fuel filter? Any help will be greatly appreciated!! Thanks.    -Jim

21 Answers


Ok, since you said you turned the car a few times, what essentially you are doing is priming the fuel pressure. So it can be one of three things. Fuel pressure regualtor is bad or leaking, clogged fuel filter or fuel pump starting to fail. So start with the easy stuff first and replace the fuel filter, they run for $15. See if that fixes your issue, if not then check the fuel pressure should be 55-62psi with a guage. Last resort is to replace the pump. There is no "check valve".

7 out of 7 people think this is helpful.

Hi Tom, thanks so much for your answer. Couldn't find a listing on a fuel pressure regulator for my truck (I work at NAPA). I'll change the fuel filter & then check the pressure at the service port with my gauge set. Thanks again! -Jim

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Would like to add, the fuel pressure on a 2.2l is supposed to be between 41-47psi. the pressure should stay above 35psi for at least 10 min after the pump turns off. There is a port to hook a fuel pressure gauge on the fuel rail.

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

There is a one way check ball in the fuel sending assembly preventing gas from going backwards through the lines. Also when the fuel pressure regulator is not under a vacuum (engine off or at WOT) the regulator is closed preventing gasoline from passing through it. A dirty fuel filter will not cause the lines to lose pressure after the engine is shut off. However as tom said either the regulator or pump check ball is allowing the fuel to pass and lose pressure.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Hi Andrew & John, thanks for the additional info. Very informative! -Jim

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I have a 98 s10 2.2 liter and it was driving fine all day then when starting from a green light it lost all power it won't go over 10 miles an hour and when it's in just neutral it won't go past 2000 rpm I've changed fuel filter spark plugs 02 sensors maf sensor and still nothing I've put a pressure tester on the little valve stem on the gas line right there next to the motor and it read in between like 37 40 any ideas?

14 out of 14 people think this is helpful.

Clogged catalytic converter, blocked air filter, sounds like an air flow issue, could be something as simple as the throttle cable has slid off the side of the throttle cable mount on the throttle plate, looks like a round plastic disc and the cable wraps around it, if this is the case there wont be much pedal travel from the time your foot touches the gas pedal till it his the floor.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

95 chevy blazer was running and just died one random day and hasnt started since,Not really sure because it there is gas in the tank. I think its the fuel filter but Im not sure do you have any suggestions?

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

Fuel filter didn't usually cause an instant no start at all. Usually a fuel filter will allow an engine to run for a while then due and the car will have to sit for an hour or so and will start back up and die again after a while. Check for spark, check for fuel pressure.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Brook, turn the key to the run position but don't try to start it. You should hear the fuel pump run for about 3 seconds. If not, get a hammer (no joke) and hit the bottom center of the gas tank. If it starts you need a fuel pump. Don't beat the tar out of it. Just 2 or 3 good whacks should do it. HTH. -Jim

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Truck won't go past 2 grand or 10 mph I replace almost everything. What else could it be?

15 out of 15 people think this is helpful.

Well,different question. A couple weeks ago my truck started acting up. When I turned the switch it went real slow. It would crank as if bogged down and then finally just went to clicking.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

You have a bad battery

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

hi I have a bmw that smokes white a lot and does not want to start when cold, I have replaced glo plug unit . What can be the problem?


I have a 99 Chevy s10 2.2 liter the problem I'm having is my fuel is getting into my oil and is smoking and has loss of power what could my problem be

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

Brandon is your truck misfiring and sputtering a lot. . . If so it's probably jumped time


I have an s10 2001 after a while driving I'll get a little flutter an the car will cut off but layer start again an drive for awhile

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

I have a S10 that will not start until after 9:00 I know it sounds crazy but I changed the fuel pump the fuel regulator the gas filter its just not getting gas in the early morning to the fuel injectors dose any one know why because after 9:00 it starts right up. Any help would be really appreciated.

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.

I have the same problem! It will not start when it gets below 70 degrees (over night). During the summer i drive it with no issue. I've put two fuel pumps and 2 fuel pressure regulators, fuel filter, but at the rail I'm only getting 38 psi. After 10 minutes it leaks down to 32 psi. While idling with vacuum not connected to the regulator I'm getting 50 psi. I'm lost. The only thing left to check is the injectors.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Hi my fiance just purchased a 2003 s10 4x4, he recently just started having problems with it. Ithe started misting or loosing it's power. He has already changed the spark plugs and wires, changed the fuel filter and dropped the gas tank cause he found water in the fuel filter and it's still not budging. It's still doing the same thing. We plan on changing the gas pump. Any ideas on what could it be that's still causing it to mist out. It wanta to die out when he's driving it..


I replaced the fuel pump and hotel lined up new fuel filter on and it is the fuel pump works but I can't get any pressure to the motor what do I do

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

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