How To Change Your UTV Fuel Pump
If you have noticed a lack of power in your UTV and it seems to be getting progressively worse, you need to investigate the problem quickly.
Somebody brought a Polaris Ranger 700 to our garage that had trouble climbing up steep grades and did not seem to have the power once available to its rear wheels. At about 4500 rpm the engine would begin to stall and it seemed as if the engine had a limiter on it or it was starving for fuel.
We performed a fuel pressure test and determined the fuel pump was way below spec pressures listed in the service manual. This fuel pump needed to be replaced. Here’s how we did it.
Quick Tip: Be sure to clean any dirt or dust from the top of the tank prior to removing any hoses. The last thing you want is more dirt in the tank.
Checking fuel rail pressure on a fuel-injected machine is relatively simply. All you need is a fuel pressure gauge, which is available at your local auto parts store and possibly an adaptor to attach the pressure hose to the fuel rail’s particular Schrader valve.
Once the engine is running the pressure should be evident. Refer to your machine’s service manual for the correct pressure range. Ours was supposed to be at 40 pounds, plus or minus one pound.
Removing the pump from the tank is a simple process that requires only patience. Remove the fuel line by pressing in on the two tabs to release the quick connect. The clip may not come all the way out of the fitting. Then you just need to unplug the power supply. The twist-off retainer ring can be tough and on our machine there was not much room to work with, but we managed without any tools. You may need a large pair of adjustable pliers to get it moving if it is too tough by hand.
Gently and carefully lift the pump assembly out of the tank, making sure you do not hang the fuel filter or fuel level arm on the inside of the tank. It takes some wiggling, but it will come right out. The wires and piping can be brittle, so be aware when handling the assembly. Also take care when pulling the fuel pump out that you do not drop the large o-ring seal into the tank.
Quick Tip: Remember that all of the plastic parts of the assembly can be very brittle. Use caution when prying up on snap retainers.
The pump is held into the bottom of the assembly by a cap that simply snaps onto the main body of the pump assembly. Using a small flat head screwdriver you can pry up on the snaps and release this cover. Once this cover is off, the fuel pump will be exposed.
A plug with two wires in it is attached to the top of the fuel pump assembly. This needs to be unplugged and slid down so the remaining plastic housing can be taken off the pump and the pump unplugged from the assembly. Gently pry up on the clips for the plastic housing and slide it down off of the pump assembly. Then you will be able to unplug the pump itself and pull the pump free of the housing.
You should have the fuel pump in your hands and the pump filter should still be attached. Looking at the bottom of the pump there is a small retaining washer holding the filter on. This small retainer has to be reused, so be careful when pulling it from the old pump. Slip the edge of a small flathead screwdriver up under the retainer and the pump filter. Giving a smooth and upward motion a little at a time while working around the edges of the retainer, it will slip off of the mounting post. Be careful to not lose this part!
You are now ready to reinstall the new pump. Simply repeat the process in reverse as you had taken the pump apart. You can use a small, deep socket to press the retaining washer back onto the new pump.
Sourcing a fuel pump is relatively easy. Polaris does carry a replacement pump assembly, but you will be purchasing the entire fuel pump system. When you take your pump out you can have a local auto parts guy source just the pump itself, which will save you some cash.
This process is one that should be taken seriously and carefully, as you are dealing with many items covered in gasoline. Be sure you are not around any ignition sources such as gas water heaters, shop heaters, those pesky cigarette smokers or stoves. Fumes travel fast and the flames travel faster, so be careful and smart.
More by Rick Sosebee