Water In Diesel Fuel Filter Symptoms (9 Things To Be Aware Of)

“Contaminated gas” is sometimes misunderstood as “harsh chemicals.” And even if that’s the case sometimes, water is a simple explanation for it.

Although you might believe it’s unusual for water to enter your fuel tank, there are various ways it might do so, and one is through your fuel filter.

Water In Diesel Fuel Filter Symptoms

1. Corroded Fuel Filter

Once it reaches the fuel filter, water condenses at the bottom of the tank. It indicates that the majority of the real damage takes place when the tank is nearly empty.

So, when this occurs, the filter will start to draw water up from the bottom. As a result, rust develops over time around your fuel filter and pump.

2. Having Issues With Acceleration

Your automobile could start without a hitch, but when you depress the pedal, you can experience difficulty.

Watch out for symptoms, including coughing and spitting sounds. You could occasionally also notice that your car moves jerkily when you hit the gas pedal.

Further, an abrupt shift in speed while utilizing the same gear while driving may also be noticeable.

3. Phase Separation

Phase separation may occur when gas, mainly when it has been older than 30 days, when water breaks from gasoline, phase separation occurs. It frequently happens, especially with ethanol-containing fuel.

Therefore, avoid idling your gasoline for over two months. In reality, even a month is pushing it, mainly if the petrol you purchased isn’t premium.

4. Starting And Idling Problem

Your automobile may have tainted gasoline if you observe it surging, sputtering, or even stalling when idling.

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Similarly, your fuel filter may include water if starting your automobile is challenging for you or if it constantly starts, then dies down.

5. Less Fuel Efficiency

Less Fuel Efficiency

You may see that you fill your petrol tank more frequently than ever.

Of course, water passes through your filter, which dilutes gas and might evaporate when heated, leaving less fuel than you had expected.

As a result, the decrease in your fuel economy is because the water in diesel fuel filters lowers the Cetane level, which hinders the fuel from burning correctly.

6. RPM And Power Loss In The Machine

The fuel filter is in charge of filtering the gasoline before it enters the engine.

So, if the diesel fuel filter has water and the fuel somehow doesn’t reach the engine chamber in sufficient quantity, the engine will not function optimally.

Of course, you will notice a lack of power while accelerating and sporadic jerks.

To resolve this issue, locate the gasoline filter in the engine compartment or next to the fuel tank in the trunk of your vehicle.

Therefore, if the fuel filter is contaminated, replace it yourself if you have the necessary abilities, or get it replaced at your local repair shop.

7. Irregular Smoke On Exhaust

Another typical symptom that the diesel fuel filter is blocked or broken or contaminated with water is white exhaust smoke.

Diesel fuel filters get congested over time. However, variables such as excessive impurities such as water and rust can reduce their service life.

These pollutants eventually accumulate around the filter, restricting the flow of diesel fuel to the engine and resulting in an uneven mix of air and diesel inside the combustion chamber.

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In addition, the fuel filter may be broken to the point where fuel begins to pass through unfiltered, allowing impurities such as gasoline or water to mix with the diesel in the vehicle’s combustion chamber.

Either way, it produces gray or white smoke from the exhaust pipe and a natural gasoline odor.

8. Poor Throttle Response

When your vehicle’s throttle response is poor, an automobile mechanic would likely test the fuel filter first.

The filter is in charge of eliminating particles from the engine to prevent engine problems and enhance fuel efficiency.

Whenever your filter is dirty or contaminated with water, it can cause a delay in throttle response and acceleration because the gasoline takes much longer to travel through a constricted or dirty filter than it does across a clean filter.

Filters can sometimes be wiped down and reused based on how long it’s been since your previous cleaning and the average driving circumstances you encounter.

9. Corroded Fuel System

This might happen if water pollution in diesel fuel filters worsens and deteriorates engine components.

Premature wear and breakage to injectors can also result from decreased lubricity. Because this disease is difficult to notice in the early phases because it grows over time, you must act quickly.

To know more, you can also read our posts on shorted alternator symptoms, why people lower their cars, and why cars misfire.


If you are focused on the signs of a compromised diesel fuel filter, you must act quickly to avoid significant problems and costly downtime.

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Water in gasoline filters is an issue that will not go away in the fuel sector. Therefore, you should be contemplating ways to avoid water contamination from becoming a significant problem, like how to drain water from your fuel tanks, clean your fuel filter, and much more.

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