Fuel pump keeps dying in 2005 Toyota Corolla

The original pump was a Toyota OEM part, not a $30 AZ part. Try a Toyota part or brand of equal quality.

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I might tend to think there is an intermittent fuel pump control circuit problem instead of a pump failure and replacing the pump was simply catching that intermittent when it was not so intermittent.

Instead of assuming and blindly replacing the pump on a WAG why doesn’t the mechanic simply jump the pump relay terminals and see what happens? If it starts and runs fine then the pump was never the issue to begin with.


Maybe so, but maybe not, or maybe more than one problem causing the CEL to be on. Maybe problem with the EVAP system: the fuel pump has to pull against ever increasing vacuum in the tank because a valve in the EVAP system is not letting air into the tank. That will shorten the life of any fuel pump. A bad or the wrong gas cap could also cause this to happen.

Once a fault has lit the CEL and you don’t fix it, the CEL cannot advise you of any additional faults.


Rock Auto shows Denso fuel pump for a 2005 Corolla for about $115. That’s the one I’d go with myself, if I didn’t buy one at a Toyota dealership. I very much doubt the fuel pump relay is the problem. If that part is replaced with anything but a Toyota oem version, be sure to keep the original.

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Since you brought that up I’ll mention that the CEL goes on/off on a probably bi-weekly to a monthly frequency. Sometimes it’s on, sometimes it’s off. In my quest to understand not just vehicles but especially my own quirky mobile what do you think of that? Any red flags or indicators that jump out at you without having the exact code and having looked at it yourself?

Appreciate your time

Excellent idea, that would be interesting if it worked. I think I will see if the mechanic can allow me to keep the replaced fuel pump so maybe I could try that myself as well, I want to trust my mechanic but I really don’t want a subscription for fuel pumps :rofl: The more I learn about it the more I will understand it and avoid another trip to the mechanic in 7-9 months… I’m going to google how to do what you’re saying…Is it hard to DIY jump the pump relay terminals?

The scary part is that I’d miss out on the savings from the warranty being fullfilled…But you are completely right. It’s better to spend another $500 to get it fixed by someone else. With this current mechanic I feel like I have a yearly subscription for fuel pumps!! :sweat_smile:


Don’t let the gas drop below an eighth of a tank!


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Bench testing the old pump won’t prove anything. When a car with a fuel pump failure comes in we sometimes pound on the bottom of the fuel tank to rattle the pump. If the engine starts we can dive the vehicle into the shop for repair. By the time the pump is handed to you it will have been jarred and working.

There is an old service bulletin that indicates a problem with the fuel pump module, the plastic housing and internal lines. I suspect your mechanic only replaced the motor, not the complete assembly.

If your fuel pump has failed you could replace it yourself, it is so easy you can do it in a parking lot. The guy in this video is replacing the complete fuel pump module. He is improvising with the removal of the lock ring with a hammer and board, we have a spanner wrench for that.

How to replace the fuel pump on a 2005 Toyota Corolla - Bing video

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I’m just not buying that all of those fuel pumps are failing. I feel that way about any repair involving any component which is stated to have been replaced multiple times.
My first thought is always misdiagnosis and treating the symptom rather than the cause.

I’m just saying that if I’m facing a car with an alleged bad fuel pump which will not start I just jump the pump terminals. That involves a whopping 2 minutes at most and settles the question beyond all doubt.


Not much to add, but can’t you AT LEAST get your “mechanic” to read the codes your check engine light stored?

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Understood. I’m on break at work right now where my car died, after reading your comment I followed the video instructions, pulled off the back seat. Im going to order a good pump and diy since my mechanic doesnt want to warranty his work, just the part…I called him 2 days ago to try to just bring it in and he hasnt even called me back lol… Last time he charged around $250 when the pump died within warranty… for that price Ill buy a desco brand and just do it myself. No more shady mechanic!

Any tips on checking my fuel tank for debris? I was thinking of shining an LED down the fuel pump hole before I put the new one in.

When he actually calls me back sometime I’ll ask if he was replacing the entire assembly or just the motor as you were saying, I dont want this to be a ticking time bomb where it will break in 7-9 months again… The first 2 times it died I was actively driving. Very dangerous

If you want to check for power to the fuel pump with a test light or volt meter, the power wire is brown with a red stripe, ground is white with a black stripe. When the ignition is switched on there should be power for two seconds. There should always be power while cranking the engine.

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I have a boroscope I used to check for debris in a snowblower gas tank, not sure if that is recommended, 80 bucks at harbor freight.

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If you’re opening up the gas tank you have to be VERY careful, sparks + gas = BOOM!


I wouldn’t try to peer down the fuel tank or put anything at all into it myself. Gas fumes just too explosive. One time I thought my truck’s fuel tank had some grit in it. Deciding to live dangerously, I drained a little out into a clear container for a visual assessment. As I recall I used hemostats to prevent leaks until I had the tube in place. I had a BIG fire extinguisher at the ready of course.

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I try to keep a good record of my car’s maintenance history, I do have a code scan from firestone dated 2/12/2019 when the problem first appeared, it is as follows

“Code - P0171 (System too lean Bank 1)”
“Code - P0441 (Evaporative Emission Control System Incorrect Purge Flow)”
“Code - P0455 (Evaporative Emission Control System Leak Detected - Large Leak)”
“Code - P0456 (Evaporative Emission Control System Leak Detected - Very Small Leak)”

Evap systems are very complicated and I understood P0441,P0455,P0456 as more of an environmental concern then something that could cause trouble to my vehicle, being a 2005 Corolla with 200k miles I wasnt very pressed to tear apart the entire system to figure it out.

At some point I got an error code for the Catalytic Converter but I’m having difficulties finding the document, I responded to this error code by running premium fuel so it burns hotter(I guess) and maybe help clean it … also some sort of cat cleaner, it got rid of the code for a week then it came back…Never actually pulled the thing out tho, once again it’s an environmental thing…

I use a flash light or an LED shop light.

This is a look inside a fuel tank today, very clean;

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I appreciate that you guys informed me against Autozone and towards Rockauto and Amazon :+1:. I decided to buy an assembly from Delphi for $460 on amazon. Rockauto was cheaper by $30 but I was more familiar with amazon and I like their no hassle returns if somethings wrong upon arrival and 5% Cash back rewards. If I had bought the same exact part # from autozone or advance auto I’d have spent close to $600! So you guys saved me like $140.

I believe my mechanic was buying JUST the fuel pump and not the entire assembly, digging up my documents I found that the first time he replaced it he charged me only $493 and the 2nd time he replaced it in which he said his work wasnt covered in the warranty he charged me $254. So splitting the difference there I’d imagine the part was somewhere in the ball park of ~200. Hopefully replacing the entire assembly saves some headaches 7 months down the road.

Hopefully my fuel tank will look like this when I open it up. That’s honestly beautiful. I’ve seen some scary images of what could pass as sewage in peoples fuel tanks and I really hope that’s not the case for me. Still hoping my mechanic didnt completely just screw me over here and left sewage in my tank to destroy the 2nd and 3rd fuel pumps…

Well if it does look bad just drop the tank and dump it and be done with it. I don’t know what grows in gas, but in diesel, lots of stuff. I had about 20,000 miles on my Olds diesel and coming back from Kansas stopped at a truck stop in DesMoines for fuel. Made it about 40 miles north and was down to 20 mph. Dealer changed fuel filters and I was changing them constantly after that. finally I dropped the tank and the thing was full of all kinds of growth. Never would have gotten clean but fine after that.

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2005 corolla I’d be very suspicious of the relay. I’m pretty sure (but not certain) there are 2 relays related to the power getting to the pump on startup, not just the pump relay itself. It’s hard to test by checking voltage at the relays & pump because the pump only primes for a couple of secs on ignition “ON”.

To reiterate previous members’ comments, multiple failures of new pumps is very odd.

Relays are in the engine bay. In RHD cars they are LHS near bonnet hinge. Identify which from Google search, I can’t remember which is which is which.

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