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2012 Kia Sportage died while driving

My wife was driving home yesterday when our Kia would not accelerate when she pressed the accelerator. All the lights came on the dashboard and the engine shut off. So, she had to pull over.

After she pulled over and attempted to restart the engine, the engine would turn over (click like it wanted to start) but would not start. Though the fuel was low, the tank still had 1/8th of a tank, and the “low fuel” light was not on.

This morning, I put gas in the car and it started after two or three attempts. I was able to drive it to a gas station to fill it up. The car started without any issues.

I’m thankful it started, but I’m concerned that there is an underlying issue, like a fuel pump, filter, or something else.

Any ideas? Anyone have a similar experience?

I myself would do one of two things. 1. Find a independent repair shop and ask for an inspection (100.00 to 125.00 dollars) to see if a problem exists. 2. Make sure to not let fuel get below 1/4 mark and see if it stalls again.


The only time I ran out of gas was in 1972, driving a '68 Valiant. The fuel sending unit had failed and still showed 1/8 tank. I remember thinking, “Man, I’m getting good mileage.”…putt…putt…putt…oops…

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You are assuming that the gas gauge is accurate? An eighth of a tank is pretty low and really strains the pump. I hardly ever let mine get below 1/2 tank. If it works now, I think the problem was starved for gas for whatever reason. If you want, you can have a fuel pressure test done to see if all is well but I can’t tell you how many times I lecture the wife on putting gas in the car. I think its a female thing not to be sexist. In my world, I’d set the low fuel warning light to come on at half a tank.

Edit: I think Tester is correct. The only other thing I can think of is the bottom of the tank was water logged, but a fuel pressure test is in your future.

I’ve seen what you describe happen many times to all kinds of vehicles.

The problem is caused by a weak fuel pump.

The level of gas in the gas tank can assist a weak fuel pump.

When the tank is full, the level of gas provides what is called head pressure. This head pressure will assist the weak fuel pump deliver the proper fuel pressure/volume to the fuel injectors.

Then as the fuel level decreases in the gas tank, the head pressure also decreases to a point where it no longer assists the weak fuel pump and the engine stalls.

A fuel pressure test will reveal if this is what’s happening.


If I had this problem I’d just consider the 1/8 tank point on the fuel gauge as “empty”. That might well solve the problem, without any further bother or expense. If the problem returns with even higher fuel gauge readings, then the weak fuel pump idea above is the the number 1 suspect.

Did you fill up the tank, and if you did and the gas you put in and the gas you filled it with equal the tank capacity, you ran out of gas. If it was a couple of gallons short ,your gauge is accurate so get the fuel pump tested.
By the way, the engine quit , then the dash lights came on. The dash lights always come on if the engine stalls with the ignition on.