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I am starting to suspect Smart Car's are sold with a faulty fuel pump. The fuel pump in my Passion went bad after 5,000 miles and they originally told me it would take a month to fix because the part was on back-order. Normally, parts go on back-order because they are in high demand.

I was lucky in that my Smart was still under warranty but these people do not seem to be as lucky: (sorry as this is my first post it will not let me post links)

  • smartcarofamerica.com SEARCH:fuel-pump-repair-cost
  • Yahoo Search: In need of a smart car person to answer question?
  • smartcarofamerica.com SEARCH:cranks-but-no-start
I know this is not very scientific but it does seem to be a trend starting here.

Has anyone else had fuel pump problems? Or know of someone who has. It would be smart to exchange this information to protect others who might have to pay $700 for a new fuel pump.
 

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http://www.smartcarofamerica.com/forums/f4/fuel-pump-repair-cost-24639/

Looking over the above thread it was one of the first we had heard of here
And at $650 to replace out of waranty it was expensive. But we never found out if that included the tow. We also only heard from a friend of an owner, so it was a second hand account.

smart traditionaly has not kept a lot of spare parts in the country. Especialy if they have not been needed yet. So to me that "shortage" you speak of is due to a lack of supply not an excess of demand.

I had to have my fuel pump replaced twice in my Versa under waranty, so this kind of thing comming from suppliers is not uncommon, but it is uncommon in a smart.

Remember, you only hear from those that have a problem, not the 20K= owners in the US who don't.
 

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I mean no insult, but there's another angle to consider here. Smart owners seem to be a bit anal about mileage, and are more likely to run the tank WAAAY down to stretch it as far as possible. This is going to result in the pump running a greater percentage of the time without fuel to cool it, and there's less fuel to start with. Fried pump..........
 

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Good point, As a rule I never run below reserve. I figure the reserve will get you to a filling point, but it is not meant to be used all the time.
 

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I mean no insult, but there's another angle to consider here. Smart owners seem to be a bit anal about mileage, and are more likely to run the tank WAAAY down to stretch it as far as possible. This is going to result in the pump running a greater percentage of the time without fuel to cool it, and there's less fuel to start with. Fried pump..........

I have to disagrea. without having any fact to back it (exept that I allways run it lower than 0) I would say that those eventual air bubbles that might come in to the pump when You after 600 km (400 miles) have the very last liters in the tank does not make any difference.
It might be working a little harder for some kilometers but I realy think You would have heard it, on the Roadster the fuel sender is sitting not more than 40 cm from the drivers head.

Jörgen
 

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I have to disagrea. without having any fact to back it (exept that I allways run it lower than 0) I would say that those eventual air bubbles that might come in to the pump when You after 600 km (400 miles) have the very last liters in the tank does not make any difference.
It might be working a little harder for some kilometers but I realy think You would have heard it, on the Roadster the fuel sender is sitting not more than 40 cm from the drivers head.

Jörgen
The service tech at my smart center said that the fuel pump will be turned off before running dry.
 

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I am starting to suspect Smart Car's are sold with a faulty fuel pump. The fuel pump in my Passion went bad after 5,000 miles and they originally told me it would take a month to fix because the part was on back-order. Normally, parts go on back-order because they are in high demand.
True, this is ONE reason. Another is that there is such LOW DEMAND that the parts depot hasn't had a reason to stock many.

With someone else posting that this was the first time they heard of this issue, my guess is that it's due to LOW DEMAND rather than high demand.

Also, keep in mind that smart or even MB isn't the actual manufacturer of the fuel pump or many other parts on their cars. Like all manufacturers, parts are supplied by independent vendors and the manufacturer, in this case 'smart', covers the part under their warranty.
 

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The service tech at my smart center said that the fuel pump will be turned off before running dry.
That sound resonable because I did not hear the pump at all the one time I drove it until it stopped. And it can allso explain why it differs so much how much one can get into the tank after driven it "dry".

Jörgen
 

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I normally fill up when I have one bar left on the gas gauge. I had a mechanic buddy of mine tell me to never let the gas get that low while driving. Normally I when I fill up I put between 6 and 7 gallons of fuel.
 

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That sound resonable because I did not hear the pump at all the one time I drove it until it stopped. And it can allso explain why it differs so much how much one can get into the tank after driven it "dry". Jörgen
The fuel pump can readily be heard by removing the fill-cap and listening down the pipe. It is a soft "tump-tump-tump-...," about three times a second.
 

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If a fuel pump replacement costs $650 at the dealer then that means the pump probably costs $200 and the rest was labor. Odds are you could buy an aftermarket or generic pump for $40 and replace it yourself. Dealers make money selling parts...not cars.
 

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My local independent service shop just quoted me $650 for this service. Apparently, the pump is in the fuel tank and it's a big job.

If a fuel pump replacement costs $650 at the dealer then that means the pump probably costs $200 and the rest was labor. Odds are you could buy an aftermarket or generic pump for $40 and replace it yourself. Dealers make money selling parts...not cars.
 

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My local independent service shop just quoted me $650 for this service. Apparently, the pump is in the fuel tank and it's a big job.
I hate that. And, from what I know it is the case in most modern cars. Long gone are the days when a mechanical dolt such as myself could replace their own fuel pump, water pump, generator/alternator. I've done all of those, on 60s & 70s cars. Wouldn't even consider it on today's vehicles.

EDIT: On some of those cars, I could just about climb under the hood and close it. Almost.
 

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When I found out the smart was French made, I hesitated. LOL

Turns out I should have listened to my gut, because I'm still trying to resolve my faulty fuel-pump with less than 30k on the odom. :(
 

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Agreed, i was hesitant at first seeing how the car was made in France and that country has been known to make some really bad cars in the past, like the le car mentioned and the Renault Alliance, but the german engineering was the draw of it all since my folks own a Mercedes and have had very good service from them all. I do agree that running a car on close to empty is very bad for the car, and for me if it is at one bar or in the beginning stages of the pump icon flashing, that is time for me to fill up, as i don't like to risk it.
 

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My pump seems to be getting louder after 3,500 miles on the car. Is this normal? I can hear it at idle catching up some times and other times can not hear.
You could be hearing the purge valve which is normal condition. Is it a thump, thump noise that can vary in speed?
 

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Add me to the list. Bad fuel pump at 13,383 miles. Not sure if its first owner had it replaced before, though.

I was in the shop when they tested it this morning on the Star computer. The stupid car has no idea its fuel pressure is zero and its fuel pump isn't running. The test on the Star System is to click a button to turn the pump on and LISTEN TO THE TANK TO HEAR IT RUNNING. How sophisticated! No fuel pressure sensor, no fuel pump current sensing, either, or it would know.

New fuel pump from Smart of Charleston to my independent MB shop is over $350. They also quoted about $350 for the crank position sensor, a part that goes for about $8 for many other cars. Of course, ours is "special". It has 3 wires and is a simple hall effect sensor....real special.

Taking the little tank out of it isn't rocket science or an all-day-job, either.....

Well, that's what happened to me, too! The car just stops, no codes because there is no sensors. I agree the fuel pumps are either defective or the fuel system design is trashing them.

This isn't the first time Mercedes Benz has had a spate of fuel pump failures. On their big cars, I missed which models, but the old Benz mechanics said that for a few years they were changing out expensive fuel pumps right and left and it took MB a long time to figure out what was going wrong. THERE WAS AN EVENTUAL RECALL! The problem was the little fuel filter inside the tank was too small for the fuel flow demanded of it. The suction pressure on the pump was too much for the pump to overcome and remain within its current limit and cooling system. The pumps burned out from overload, right from the factory. I'm sure these guys aren't the only ones that know about this problem.

Maybe history has repeated itself.....??
http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w163-m-class/90005-fuel-pump-failure-survey.html

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/att...211-fuel-filter-replacement-pump-removing.pdf
That must be the filter that was burning up pumps....
http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w209-clk-class/1476738-08-clk-350-fuel-pump-failure.html
 
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