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Gas tank pump

When turning the key/ignition, the car can turn over and over. then i stop. then i try again, and the car will start right up. sometimes it starts up on the first try or sometimes on the third try. Mechanic has changed something on the top of the engine to try and not make me buy the gas pump, i then went on a 1400 mile trip with it starting most of the time, but not a hundred percent. doesnt a pump just go? if its not the pump what might it be

no pumps don’t just go. They wear out like any other mechanical/ electric part.
I have an inkling that the real guys may want to know what kind of vehicle your talking about before they can give you any sort of help.

What year and mileage are on your Lesabre? Is your check engine light on?

No start means you don’t have the right air, the right spark, or the right fuel. Fuel is provided by the fuel pump, which is inside or next to your gas tank, and they do wear out. The fuel goes through the fuel injectors, which can become clogged in older cars. Spark is provided by the spark plugs, wires, ignition coil, and distributor or electronic ignition system. Air comes from through the air cleaner to the intake manifold and is mixed with the fuel. The engine computer is also involved, and problems can occur if their are faults in the sensors that the computer relies on.

You need a mechanic who can properly diagnose the problem, not a mechanic who throws the most likely and most profitable parts into the car hoping it will fix the problem. I don’t know which kind of mechanic you have.

If he was correct that fuel is a problem, and he did something that was cheaper than the fuel pump hoping it would be enough, then maybe he guessed wrong and you do need a new fuel pump. But you don’t provide enough information to even make a good guess at what is wrong.

The next time you’re having a problem starting the engine, turn the ignition switch to the run position so the dash lights come on for two seconds, and then turn the ignition switch off. Repeat this 3-4 times and then try starting the engine. If the engine starts right up, the problem is most likely with the anti drain-back valve in the fuel pump assembly.


The commutator in the fuel pump motor can have a dead spot from wear or a little bit of dirt. It’s a crap shoot if the motor stops on the dead spot when you shut off the engine. One trick I have heard of is to have someone bang the fuel tank while starting the engine to help get the pump going.

I have seen GM products come in on the hook with a report of “crank no start” (public,you should learn this term) You get the car dispatched to you and go out to the lot and the car starts right up and drives fine. I would not venture more than a 1/4 mile off-road in a GM product without a spare fuel pump and a hole cut where required to change it out without dropping the tank, and I am a GM “fanboy” but they slipped up badly with their fuel pumps for about 15 years.

So Sarah, Yes, fuel pumps show intermittent failure in many cases.