Is my fuel gauge off?
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This is a discussion on Is my fuel gauge off? within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; I have an 04wrx and from researching it seems the tank holds 15.9 gallons. This is how a normal tank ...

  1. #1
    Registered User ZACK777's Avatar
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    Is my fuel gauge off?

    I have an 04wrx and from researching it seems the tank holds 15.9 gallons. This is how a normal tank goes through my car.
    When full I can run nearly 200 miles in the first half tank, avoiding boost when I can, then only get, if I'm lucky, another 100 until the light comes on and is right on the empty line. And when I fill it back up it only takes about 12 gallons. I remember reading somewhere that when the light comes on you have about 3 gallons of fuel left? I haven't chanced driving another 70-80 miles because I do not want to run out. What do you guys think is going on?
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    Sounds about normal to me... The gauge shows the fuel usage that way on purpose. It's a psychological tomfoolery by the automotive companies...
    '02 WRX 4EAT, 311,000KMs/194,500Miles, Sold. Best car I ever had. '09 STi stage 1, hope this one will be good too...

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    Registered User ZACK777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrxdrvr View Post
    Sounds about normal to me... The gauge shows the fuel usage that way on purpose. It's a psychological tomfoolery by the automotive companies...
    Really?, so if I normally only use about 12 gallons per tank in reality there should be about 3 gallons still in there when I think I'm about to run out? That's truly retarded
    That's like only being able to drink 12oz out of a 16oz bottle of beer. The horror!!
    2004 PSM WRX VF39'd and loving it.
    1979 Camaro Z28 383 stroker
    1993 Silverado 6.5 TD "Old Smokey"
    1974 Honda CB750 cafe racer project
    blObeye SYNDICATE #88
    "In art, as in love, instinct is enough."

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    Registered User dchoi23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZACK777 View Post
    ....When full I can run nearly 200 miles in the first half tank, avoiding boost when I can, then only get, if I'm lucky, another 100 until the light comes on....
    That's exactly what mine does too (02 wrx wagon)....it gives the false impression that you're going to get 400 miles to the tank

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZACK777 View Post
    Really?, so if I normally only use about 12 gallons per tank in reality there should be about 3 gallons still in there when I think I'm about to run out? That's truly retarded
    That's like only being able to drink 12oz out of a 16oz bottle of beer. The horror!!
    Yea, but do you really want to drive right to empty...? So they got that part right, but the needle not being correct for the first half is misleading...
    '02 WRX 4EAT, 311,000KMs/194,500Miles, Sold. Best car I ever had. '09 STi stage 1, hope this one will be good too...

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    Registered User ZACK777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrxdrvr View Post
    Yea, but do you really want to drive right to empty...? So they got that part right, but the needle not being correct for the first half is misleading...
    No, running a car empty is never good, but at least now I know nothing is wrong and if I find myself miles and miles away from a gas station I know how much is actually in the tank. Thanks
    2004 PSM WRX VF39'd and loving it.
    1979 Camaro Z28 383 stroker
    1993 Silverado 6.5 TD "Old Smokey"
    1974 Honda CB750 cafe racer project
    blObeye SYNDICATE #88
    "In art, as in love, instinct is enough."

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    The Default One SeattleJeremy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrxdrvr View Post
    Sounds about normal to me... The gauge shows the fuel usage that way on purpose. It's a psychological tomfoolery by the automotive companies...
    +1, what you are experiencing is completely normal and "By Design" as they say.

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    Registered User vttk_mig69's Avatar
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    I have been getting the same millage with my 02 wrx and yes that is by design. My 97 cavi, its top half of the tank would last for what seemed forever, but the last half would go to E in a nother 75 miles or so,at the same speed.So I dont think its just the subarus. Most cars are like that for idiots who dont realize that they should look at there gauges every now and then. and the same thing goes with the low fuel light a.k.a (IDIOT LIGHT)

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    Registered User Pactin's Avatar
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    Seems somewhat opposite with my car. The top end of the gauge gets eaten up faster than the bottom half.
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    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dchoi23 View Post
    That's exactly what mine does too (02 wrx wagon)....it gives the false impression that you're going to get 400 miles to the tank
    I've gotten over 400 mi to the tank.
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    Admiral Ackbar mycologist's Avatar
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    I can't recall a car that didn't do this (except the light, I've had plenty without those).

    From an operator's standpoint, wouldn't it be better to have it go down slower and slower? Just saying there have been more times when I had a quarter tank and wished it was a half, than when I had a full tank and wished it was more than full.
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