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Fuel pump?

2002 Buick century will sometimes not start. Seems to correlate with warmer weather and happens after long drives. I try to restart within 10 minutes of turning off and it will start and then in a few seconds the car shakes and the engine dies. I can restart multiple times, but it will always die in a couple of seconds. If I wait an hour and retry, no problem. Once someone banged on the gas tank and that solved it. Mechanic cannot diagnose problem unless it dies while he is there.

Should I replace the fuel pump or could it be something else?

Thanks, Gary

When was the last time it got a new fuel filter.

Banging on the fuel tank and the engine restarting could also be pure coincidence.
I’m not 100% certain but I think there is a fuel pump test plug in the engine compartment. It’s a small wire with a tiny female connector and often located near the A/C accumulator.

A length of wire could be run from the battery positive terminal to this plug during a no-start situation as a test means. Doing this will bypass the fuel pump relay and other components in the fuel pump control system. This is a test only and any wire should not be left in place.

If the no-start condition still exists during this test and seeing as how this could be heat-related you might consider the possibility of a flaky crank position sensor. The CPS is also a much cheaper and less hassle option compared to a fuel pump.

I’m with OK4450, I suspect the banging on the gas tank and the starting were purely coincidental. I suspect you have something becoming heat sensitive, not at all an unusual condition on aging vehicles. When you shut the engine off, the temperature under the hood rises considerable as the heat internal to the engine radiates out the sides and top of the engine. Anything becoming heat sensitive will fail to work properly until it cools off again. The fuel pump is unaffected by the temperature rise under the hood.

The CPS is a possibility, as is the igniter and perhaps a few other items. Buy your 2002 has the advantage of an OnBoard Diagnostics II system (OBDII) that stores fault codes for many of the things that fail. Start by having the ECU checked for stored codes. There may be some even if the check engine light isn’t illuminated.

As to the mechanic, did he even attempt to diagnose the problem? If not, you might try seeking out a new shop.

Thanks so much guys, really helpful suggestions. I really appreciate it.