How to Convert a Fuel Pump to Electric

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Converting your vehicle from a mechanical fuel pump to an electric fuel pump system can help you avoid vapor lock issues, even out idle speeds and increase the torque of your engine by providing your engine with a reliable and constant fuel at an even temperature. You can place an electric fuel pump anywhere on the body of your vehicle where you can attach a ground wire to the frame. It will take about an hour to convert a mechanical fuel pump to an electric pump.

Things You'll Need

  • Flat head screwdriver
  • Glass jar
  • Hose stops
  • Electric fuel pump
  • Drill (if needed)
  • #12 electric wire
  • Ring terminal connectors
  • Spade terminal connectors
  • Electrical pliers
  • Rubber fuel line
  • Hose clamps
  • 2 universal inline fuel filters
  • Disconnect the negative cable from your car's battery and then remove the gas cap from your gas tank. Removing the gas cap will help to relieve pressure in the gas lines. Pump your gas pedal a few times to further dispel the pressure.

  • Loosen the hose clamps connecting the fuel line from your tank to the mechanical fuel pump installed on the driver's side of your engine. The fuel pump is typically located near the front of the engine block toward the bottom (but above the oil pan). Place a glass jar under the hose connections to the fuel pump and then pull the hoses off the fuel pump; catch any gas that is still in the line in the glass jar. Make sure you also disconnect the line from the fuel pump to the carburetor or fuel injection system, and remove that hose completely. Plug up the open connections in your mechanical fuel pump with hose stops. A hose stop is a molded rubber cap with a hose clamp that is attached as if you were connecting a hose except it works as a stopper to prevent anything from entering or leaving the fuel pump. With the hose stops in place, your mechanical fuel pump is now disabled.

  • Install your electric pump in its new location. Make sure it is placed somewhere where it will not be exposed to any flying road debris and is not in a passenger area of the vehicle; the trunk is a preferred location. Your pump will come with a bracket and sheet metal screws that you can screw right into the frame of your car. Use a drill to make driving the screws easier and make sure that the arrow printed on the electric fuel pump is pointing towards the engine compartment.

  • Attach the black wire from the electric pump directly to the frame of the car by removing a nearby screw or bolt, passing it through the ring terminal at the end of the wire and then re-attaching the screw or bolt. This will ground the electric pump. Splice #12 wire to the red wire coming off the pump by twisting the bare wires together and covering the splice with electrical tape. Run this wire to the fuse box and attach it to the ignition fuse with a spade terminal connector. This will turn your fuel pump on when your ignition is engaged. Cut the wire and crimp the terminal to the end with your electrical pliers.

  • Follow the fuel line that came from the old fuel pump back to where it connects to the feed line from the tank. Loosen the hose clamp and remove the hose. Attach the new fuel line from the tank to the electric pump with hose clamps. Then run the new fuel line from the electric pump to your carburetor or fuel injection system.

  • Cut the fuel lines in half, once between the fuel tank and the pump and then again from the pump to the engine. Install a universal inline fuel filter at each cut point attaching the hoses with hose clamps and making sure that the arrows on the fuel filters are pointed towards the engine.

Tips & Warnings

  • It is worth it to invest in a lined rubber fuel line, like those manufactured for fuel injection systems. While much more expensive initially then regular rubber hose, they will last longer as the inside lining will resist disintegrating from the gasoline.
  • Do not smoke or use open flames when working on any portion of your vehicle's system that involves gasoline. Gasoline and its vapors are highly combustible.

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