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2000 Saturn L-Series: Fuel Filter..My car keeps dying..clog

Resolved Question:

How do I change the Fuel Filter on a 2000 Saturn L-Series (V6)? My car keeps dying after about 5 minutes of driving. Seems as though there is a clog and the engine isn't getting the necessary fuel. It will start if it sits for about 2 hours. Do you think changing the fuel filter will help?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  GM-Frank replied 7 years ago.




Here is the location of the filter.


The fuel filter is located on the underbody at the forward edge of the right-side of the fuel tank.



It is possible that the fuel filter may be restricted enough to cause a problem with starving the engine for fuel, however it is much more common that the fuel pump itself may be failing. The only true way to verify this, is to pull the filter and inspect it for flow, and run a fuel pressure test on the fuel pump.


  1. Position vehicle on hoist. CAUTION: Any time the fuel system is being worked on, disconnect the negative battery cable, except for those tests where battery voltage is required.
  2. Disconnect negative battery cable. CAUTION:
    • Do not allow smoking or the use of open flames in the area where work on the fuel system is taking place.
    • Fuel supply lines will remain pressurized for long periods of time after the engine is shutdown. This pressure must be relived before servicing the fuel system.




  1. Relieve fuel system. Refer to "Relieving Fuel System Pressure" . See: Fuel Pressure Release\Service and Repair
  2. Raise vehicle to a comfortable working height.
  3. Remove fuel filter bracket screw (10 mm hex). CAUTION:
      • Whenever fuel line fittings are loosened or removed, wrap a shop cloth around the fitting and have an approved container available to collect any fuel.
      • Whenever fuel lines are removed, catch fuel in an approved container. Container opening must be a minimum of 300 mm (12 in.) diameter to adequately catch the fluid.



      1. Disconnect fuel feed lines at inlet and outlet side of fuel filter.
      2. Slide fuel filter out of fuel filter bracket.


      NOTE: Plastic retainers must be replaced when fuel lines are disassembled. Install new retainer into female cavity. Care must be taken to assure that the locking tab is centered in the window of the female cavity. Firmly press tile female connection onto the male end until a click is heard, then pull back to confirm engagement.



  1. Slide the fuel filter into the bracket.
  2. Install new fuel line retainers into female portion of quick connect fuel line fittings. NOTE: Lubricate male ends of filter with clean engine oil to ease installation and "SNAP" closed.
  3. Connect fuel feed lines to fuel filter inlet and outlet.
  4. Install filter bracket attachment screw. Torque: 4 N.m (35 in-lbs)
  5. Connect negative battery cable.
  6. Prime fuel system.
    1. Cycle ignition On for 5 seconds and then Off for 10 seconds .
    2. Repeat previous step twice.
    3. Crank engine until it starts (maximum starter motor cranking time is 20 seconds ).
    4. If engine does not start, repeat steps 6a-6c.
  1. Run engine and check system for leaks.

Fuel System Pressure
Key On Engine Off 39-44 psi


I hope this information helps


Take Care



Customer: replied 7 years ago.
So I can't change the Fuel Filter without having to re pressurize the fuel line system? Am I getting this correct?
Expert:  GM-Frank replied 7 years ago.




The instructions I sent, simply explain the safety procedures to remove the system pressure prior to removing the filter to avoid a high pressure spray of fuel during replacement.


After the new filter is installed, simply turning on the key as explained, will re-pressurize the system as the fuel pump turns on.



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