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TANKS ALOT - 2002 Fuel Sender Problem




My new 2002 Coupe has been a flawless performer for the first 4000 miles, but, unfortunately, that's now changed.

While returning to Manhattan yesterday, in the middle of the Lincoln Tunnel (the worst of all possilbe places for a breakdown) the fuel guage dropped to ZERO and the DIC reported LOW FUEL. I envisioned thousands of angry commuters giving the evil eye to a stranded C5, not to mention the "bad press". Fortunately, the car didn't quit running and got me safely back home.

I called my dealer immediately. The Service guy said it's a not a common problem, but it's not that rare either. He said they've seen a few of these before and had more than their fare share of warranty fixes for this.

He said that sulphur in the fuel might be attacking the sender(s) and that both of them would have to be replaced (there are two, one in each fuel tank.) GM is apparently aware of the problem because the replacement is with an updated part(s).

Anyone else seen this?
I have read of that happening before to other vettes, Michael...but I don't remember any of them being 2002's. That would be scary, thinking you were going to just stop in all that traffic. So far I haven't had any problems with mine. Thanks for sharing the info....:)

I had the same problem with my '98 and there are several threads here that touch on this subject.

My problem started last fall after running low on fuel; after about 30 minutes on the road, the fuel gauge would fall to Empty and the DIC would report "Low Fuel". I got in the habit of zeroing out one of the trip odometers when I fueled up just to be safe. Then, after several months of this irritant, it became less frequent and now doesn't happen at all; really weird! :(

Not only are Vettes great cars, but they also heal themselves!!! :D :D :D
Thanks for the info, Rob. I will have to check out the knowledgebase more often. You are right on top of everything. :)

My problem is that the fuel gauge will read half when I just filled up the tank. Eventually it will move to full. Sometimes though if will not or it will go to less than half a tank, but not empty. I know the tank is full and the car will still run, but this is kind of annoying because I have to guess how much gas I have in my tank.
Hi there,
If I may, the 02 bulletin is different, and is not the same as the 97-01 issues that plagued c5.
The 02 fix is a reprogram of the PCM for this condition, which is not listed in the archives as of yet.
Besttoall, c4c5:hb
I have a question for c4c5 specialist. Is my problem with the fuel sender as well. The fuel gauge will show half a tank when I just filled it up and then it will show full after a while. Sometimes it will show full and move down to 3/4 or half a tank. I am not worried about the gas as I know it is full and I know when I need more gas as I watch the trip meters. I was just wondering about it and if I need a new fuel sender. Thank you in advance.
Update: the dealer fixed the fuel gage problem under warranty. They said that the PCM reprogram was NOT for Vettes and that the fix was to replace both left and right tank sender with updated parts.

I have my doubts about their answer, but if you look carefully at the Jan. 02 service bulletin, the PCM reprogram is a fix for ERRATIC senders that will resurrect themselves, go bad again, go good, etc.

The problem that I had was different: gage dropped to zero and would NOT come back unless the tanks were completely topped off.
HI there,
First, the issue with 02 c5 fuel gauges is covered under 02-06-04-010 bulletin, with a PCM reprogram. The only car it covers is 02 Corvette.
As for your concern, I think they may have found something else, which necessitated the change of both fuel tank sensing units, although, I do not know what.
The reprogram was probably also done at this time.
Dan, you issue is covered under bulletin,01-06-04-022. which states the sender unit, or entire assembly, based on build dates of the fuel tank module in the passenger side tank assembly.
I hope this helps, and honestly, as long as all your c5 are fixed correctly the first time, I would not really worry about it, c4c5:hb
Dan, you need to have them do the bulletin first but if you still are having problems you may have to have the right tank replaced, there have been a few cases where the right tank sensor arm can hang up on the inside of the tank(which is what it soulds like you may be having) and in that case the tank would have to be replaced. But do have them do the bulletin first then if you are still having problems replace the right tank assembly.

David Fulcher
David, Thank you, I will look into it. Would it be covered under the extended warranty? I hope so because I got it for reasons like this. Thank you again.
If it's a GMPP plan it should be.

David Fulcher
I've got the same problem as 98TXRed with my fuel gage. After refueling, sometimes it reads correctly at full...but only for about 20 minutes, then it immediately drops to empty and the DIC gives me the message "low fuel" and the check gages light comes on and stays on.

I just bought this car (97 6spd coupe) and was told the warranty had expired (38k miles). How much would it cost to fix this problem without a warranty? Also, can I purchase an extended warranty and get this issue (along with a few other problems - passenger mirror does not go out/in, cigarette lighters don't work for radar detector/phone) fixed under the extended warranty? How much do warranties cost?

Any advice would be helpful. Thanks.
Perfect "Under Par",

I have the same problem with my 2000. My fuel tank never reads under 1/2 tank. I've run out of gas too many times not paying attention. I've met some nice people and good conversations while refueling on the side of the road, but it's getting old. Now, as soon as I get under 3/4 of a tank, I refuel. I'd also like to know if there is a GM extended warranty available for overmileage cars. The car just turned 40K on my way to work.

2002 fuel gauge

my 02 did this once after i fueled at a off brand station.since then i have used nothing but EXXON,CITCO,MOBIL and AMOCO and in 5000 miles it has not done it again. i think it may be the sulfur problem that GM listed.

My 2001 vette has been having low fuel readings "off and on" for the past couple of months. I took it to the dealer and they checked the codes and said that nothing was currently wrong and they couldn't do a thing about it. Today I was driving on half a tank and it dropped to "zero" and the low fuel reading came up. I just kept driving.
Are there any TSB's posted for the 2001? How can I get the dealer to take some action instead of telling me to bring it in when the probelm is "ACTIVELY" occuring? I'm beginning to think they don't know what they are doing but I've taken it to two different dealers.

By they way... everyone on Corvette Action Center has been more helpful than my dealer.

The issue with the faulty fuel display is twofold. The first issue is that because there are twin fuel tanks there is always going to be a balancing issue between the sending units. Secondly, there are additives to the fuel which form deposits on critical areas of the sending units thusly sending false readings. GM is working on a fix for `01 and beyond but as of this date nothing for prior years. My 2000 had suffered through this awhile back but seems to have settled down.

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