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Please help - fuel gauge reading empty

Old 11-08-2018, 02:14 PM
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CocoVette
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Default Please help - fuel gauge reading empty

Hi there, please give me some insight here.
2014 corvette 35k miles
Washed my car this morning, a while later I noticed my fuel gauge was reading empty (as well as under info)
Full tank of gas yesterday, tried filling it up a bit more to see if it would help , nothing
I use shell premium 100% of the time
There is not a check engine light
The physical gauge moves up and down when you turn the car on like normal, then drops down to empty.
Covered under extended warranty, but I don't want my car torn apart
Any insight to what this could be? Please help thank you!


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Last edited by CocoVette; 11-08-2018 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 11-08-2018, 02:22 PM
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kenownr
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Sounds like the sending unit may have sulfur buildup. Try a couple bottles of Techron for a couple tanks of gas. Hopefully it will clear up the sending unit. Other wise you will have to take it in. Several people have used it, including myself on my 12GS and it worked; no further problems. Worth a shot!!
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Old 11-08-2018, 03:14 PM
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Originally Posted by kenownr View Post
Sounds like the sending unit may have sulfur buildup. Try a couple bottles of Techron for a couple tanks of gas. Hopefully it will clear up the sending unit. Other wise you will have to take it in. Several people have used it, including myself on my 12GS and it worked; no further problems. Worth a shot!!
Was this the exact issue you had, or did you get a check engine light?
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Old 11-08-2018, 03:26 PM
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You won't get a check engine light. Definitely try the Techron.
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Old 11-08-2018, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Zymurgy View Post
You won't get a check engine light. Definitely try the Techron.
Great, will do. Just one bottle? And how long should it take to see if this works?
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Old 11-08-2018, 03:55 PM
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That depends on how badly the sender is fouled. It could happen very quickly, or it could take two bottles/tankfuls. If it isn't working after the second fill-up/Techron bottle, you've got a more serious problem.
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by CocoVette View Post
Great, will do. Just one bottle? And how long should it take to see if this works?
When my 12GS had problems it did exactly as you described in your OP. No check engine light, just read E and low fuel light was on. I actually saw here on the forum about trying the Techron and it worked. As I remember it took a full tank and one bottle. I drove it a little bit and no help. I put the car in the garage with the gauge reading empty but as I had just filled it at least a known 9/10 full tanks. It was parked a few days and when I re-started it --- WA-LA it worked just fine. After that I added a few ounces every few tanks and never had anymore problems. I've added a couple ounces every three or 4 tanks on my C7 since new and it's in service date is just over four years and 38K miles -- no problems with the car and/or the fuel gauge.
I hope it works for you and I agree I wouldn't want mine ripped apart either. Good luck and let us know if it works -- tom
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:07 AM
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My C5 would do this , Techron always cleared it up, seems to be a GM problem as they sell Techron labled with their on name at a lot higher price.
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by kenownr View Post
When my 12GS had problems it did exactly as you described in your OP. No check engine light, just read E and low fuel light was on. I actually saw here on the forum about trying the Techron and it worked. As I remember it took a full tank and one bottle. I drove it a little bit and no help. I put the car in the garage with the gauge reading empty but as I had just filled it at least a known 9/10 full tanks. It was parked a few days and when I re-started it --- WA-LA it worked just fine. After that I added a few ounces every few tanks and never had anymore problems. I've added a couple ounces every three or 4 tanks on my C7 since new and it's in service date is just over four years and 38K miles -- no problems with the car and/or the fuel gauge.
I hope it works for you and I agree I wouldn't want mine ripped apart either. Good luck and let us know if it works -- tom
Your experience reinforces the way to use Techron to solve the sender problem, IMO. Below is the pic from the C7 Service Manual. The resistor that gets coated with sulfur preventing the wiper that moves across it when the fuel float moves is near the top of one of the two tanks. Note the text says there is a spring that pushes the sections apart when removed so the resistor is closer than shown from the top cover. Would appear the best way to cure a fouled sender is to use two containers of Techron when you fill up and are going to park the car for a few days so it can do it's job!

If you look at the published benefits of Techron or the fuel additive GM sells and mentioned in the C7 Owner's Manual (similar SDSs so similar if not the same product with a GM logo and higher price) dissolving sulfur from a fuel sender is one of the top listed! It's not an uncommon problem. It's interesting that you always used Top Tier and had the issue. Top Tier contains a small amount of the Techron or equivalent cleaning agents. The concentrated dose appears to work better IF left on the sender for a period of time. Thanks for posting the details of your experience.

I use Techron as a preventative periodically as I do use Sam's Club gas occationally in addition to Shell. Sam's 93 octane is often $0.40/gallon cheaper so can easily justify the $5 cost periodically. Even though still on warranty sure don't want the dealer dropping my exhaust and most of the rear drive train to remove the tanks to replace the sender! A poster was horrified when he saw his drivetrain on the floor of the dealers shop floor! Good chance they won't get it all back correctly!


Last edited by JerryU; 11-09-2018 at 08:41 AM.
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:27 AM
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This was a more prevalent problem with C6's. I had one, had the problem, and saw that many other C6 owners had the same issue as mentioned in the C6 forum.

$1200 and wa-la, fixed. In the C6's the techron remedy was effective for some but not that many. If you add techron make sure you use the small funnel provided (or equivalent) that is stored above the battery (at least that is where I found mine). That funnel is long enough to open the secondary flapper that is a few inches inside the primary flap. Otherwise if you just shove a bottle of techron through the primary flap most of the product will end up on the ground. I know because.............yup
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:45 AM
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OP, do not forget to reset one of the trip odometers to "0". Do not run the tanks empty!
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Old 11-09-2018, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by red 1 View Post
My C5 would do this , Techron always cleared it up, seems to be a GM problem as they sell Techron labled with their on name at a lot higher price.
GM does not relabel Techron. GM's recommended fuel additive is manufactured by a small company in Michigan. The chemistries of the 2 products also differ from each other. Also, the price of the GM product (engineered to address the OP's sulfur corrosion of the sending unit) is very competitivly priced if you look online. I believe I paid about $12 for a 12 ounce bottle on Amazon. Techron is about the same price.

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Old 11-09-2018, 09:33 AM
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Thank you all for your help.hopefully the Techron will work The one thing that is weird is I do not have a low fuel light on or any check engine light either.
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Old 11-09-2018, 10:52 AM
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I'll add another piece of advise. There are many that would recommend (at least with a C6) you do not let your fuel run below a 1/2 tank whenever practical, or at least for a long period of time. When the tanks in total are less than 1/2 then the passenger side tank is empty. Being empty the air can be a catalyst to surfer buildup.
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Old 11-09-2018, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by shakinrock View Post
I'll add another piece of advise. There are many that would recommend (at least with a C6) you do not let your fuel run below a 1/2 tank whenever practical, or at least for a long period of time. When the tanks in total are less than 1/2 then the passenger side tank is empty. Being empty the air can be a catalyst to surfer buildup.
Also like to add that GM recommends the addition of their fuel additive every time you change your oil. With the LT1/4/5 engines being direct injected this would be a wise to do.
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by MMD View Post

Also like to add that GM recommends the addition of their fuel additive every time you change your oil. With the LT1/4/5 engines being direct injected this would be a wise to do.



That's not exactly what the owner's manual says. As you can see above, it says if Top Tier is not available, use the additive. So that says to me that if you use Top Tier exclusively you don't really need to add anything else. Unless I have a problem with my fuel gauge, I don't plan on adding anything extra to my fuel.
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:09 AM
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This would appear to be "real info" versus the subjective "stuff" on the Net! However the solution is defined by the folks who sell Techron! But NOT the description of what is occurring. Sounds like they should use gold plating of the resistor NOT silver! Note, I condensed the article.

"Technical service bulletins and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration re sulfur in fuel causing fuel sender issues.

What is happening?

The silver in the sending units is tarnishing just like your good knives, forks and spoons. That is why silverware comes on those lovely boxes lined with sulfur-free cloth.

Silver reacts readily with sulfur compounds to create that tarnish--silver sulfides. Though it is fairly easy to clean off (remember cleaning your mother's silverware?), it is difficult to keep it from returning.

Fuel sending units suffer the same fate, and the problem gets worse in the heat.

Chevron Techron additives. Chevron Techron Concentrate Plus is the product GM dealers use.


We spoke with Scott Cushing, fuel system additives manager at Chevron. And even the "top tier" gasolines, those with high doses of additives, don't adequately protect, according to Cushing. They don't have the filming agent. This coating, which is left behind, protects the sending for around 3,000 miles. "We suggest that motorists treat their fuel every time they get their oil changed," said Cushing.Cushing says two tanks treated with the Chevron product usually can clean sulfur deposits from the sending unit and should be blended at a ratio of about one ounce per gallon of gasoline."

Last edited by JerryU; 11-09-2018 at 11:16 AM.
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:12 AM
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A little bit more food for thought, so it is showing my remaining fuel on my Chevy and OnStar app. Could it be something to do with a fuse for my infotainment system, or something to do with the dash? Again, I do not have a low fuel light at all
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Patman View Post

That's not exactly what the owner's manual says. As you can see above, it says if Top Tier is not available, use the additive. So that says to me that if you use Top Tier exclusively you don't really need to add anything else. Unless I have a problem with my fuel gauge, I don't plan on adding anything extra to my fuel.
Did you read OP's post #1?
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:22 AM
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Good suggestions here. Did you not drive your car for an extended period of time? Thanks.
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