Fuel Pump Technology - How It Works

Feeding today’s horsepower demands with yesterday’s fuel pump technology is a losing proposition. Here’s a look at the latest the industry has to offer.

Stephen Kim Dec 21, 2011 0 Comment(s)
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In-Tank Benefits

Jesse Powell: At Aeromotive, the trend we are pushing is to mount big pumps like the A1000 and Eliminator inside the fuel tank, as it eliminates all the problems associated with improper installation, cavitation, and vaporlock. In-tank mounting also results in a pump that’s much quieter. Submerged in the fuel is where a pump wants to be, and it’s the ideal environment for the pump. Since the pump is submerged, there is a constant column height of fuel pushing down on the inlet of the pump, creating a positive pressure environment. Plus, with the inlet of the pump in the fuel, there is no line size to worry about. This setup ensures quiet, cool operation of the pump. Proper tank baffling is also a huge issue. Ever since the OEs went predominately EFI in the mid ’80s, all tanks have been baffled or have some sort of basket inside to keep fuel at the point of pickup at all times. Now, most pumps are inside the tank, so they sit inside that basket or baffle. The problem with swapping a late-model EFI motor into an old muscle car is that old tanks have no baffles. As a result, whenever you stop hard, accelerate, or turn fuel moves away from the pickup, uncovering it and starving the pump of fuel. In EFI systems, there is no forgiveness so the engine suffers. Unlike a carb, an EFI fuel system does not store fuel in float bowls and does not operate at low pressure, so if the pump pickup is uncovered for a brief moment, it will sputter.

Staged Pumps

Liz Miles: Holley’s new flagship pump, the high-flow inline Dominator, boasts a long list of impressive features. Not only can it support up to 2,100 hp, but it also features billet aluminum construction for durability and good looks. The pump is very compact in size, measuring 7.5x5x2.5 inches, making it easy to mount in tight spaces. Additionally, the pump is fully submersible and can be mounted inside a fuel tank. A very unique feature of the Dominator is its dual pump design. With this arrangement, the motor can run off of one pump, and the second pump can be set up to activate on demand for nitrous or boost. This eliminates excessive recirculating and heating of the fuel. In applications that require massive fuel volume all the time, the second pump can be set up to run simultaneously as the primary pump. Despite its impressive flow, the Dominator weighs just 5.1 pounds.

Tank/Pump Combos

Jesse Powell: There are several great options for mounting an Aeromotive fuel pump internally. Companies like Rick’s Hot Rod Shop and Rock Valley offer stainless and aluminum tanks for almost any application with an A1000, Eliminator or even smaller pumps like our 340 Stealth built right in. They are a little on the higher end of the budget, but they provide you the ultimate combination of perfect performance, extra capacity, and great looks. Another option is going with one of Aeromotive’s Stealth Fuel cells, which have an A1000 or Eliminator pump built right in. The tanks have taken into consideration proper venting and quiet operation of the pump. All you do is drop it in, hook up your two lines and wires and you’re done. We see these being used a lot in Pro Touring vehicles, street/strip machines, and a lot of street trucks because it is so easy to drop between the framerails. If you already have a tank you want to use, we also offer universal A1000 and Eliminator Stealth systems. This is basically the same setup you see in the fuel cells, just in a universal application that allows users to turn any cell or custom tank into a Stealth tank. The key here though is going to be the fabrication. You can’t just drop this in. It does require a baffle like you see in our cells.

Perhaps the most exciting option is our new line of muscle car tanks that feature an in-tank fuel pump that provides the ability to support big horsepower. We have developed a first-gen F-body tank that is stamped and stock appearing that also features an internal baffle and a built-in 340 Stealth Pump. These tanks are perfect for the LS swap guy. They can support 700-plus horsepower in EFI motors, and 1,000 hp in carbureted motors. The baffling eliminates fuel slosh issues, and hot fuel handling and noise problems disappear because the pump is submerged. It’s like dropping a new Camaro tank into your muscle car. We hope to release these in early 2012 for ’67-69 Camaros with applications for ’64-72 A-bodies and Tri-Fives arriving shortly after. CHP


Lenexa, KS 66214


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