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ever run out of petrol

Has anyone with a 16v ever ran out of fuel?
I came out from work on Friday and the gauge read 1/4 tank, 5 miles later it was one tiny notch away from empty.
Absolute nightmare as I didnt have my wallet on me. So I drove home embarrassingly slowly in fifth gear most of the time trying to keep the momentum up. Its a 43 mile journey so I was quite surprised when I got home to see that the gauge was still on the one tiny notch away from empty.
The warning light has never come on since Ive had the car. (Im pretty careful not to let all the crap sitting in the bottom of the average 10 year old tank through the engine normally.)
Does the old clio really have a 50 litre tank and Ive just been using the top half of it?

On a slightly different note.. Ive always been sceptical about that dont use your whole tank of fuel cause the crapll go into your engine" rule. Surely the filters sort that out... am I wrong?



i always run mine dry before filling up ;) (not to the point where it wont run but not far away)

steve - i had this shortly after buying mine - they have a reserve tank so when you are on empty on the indicator you still have your reserve tank left. My handbok says that the warning light will flash when it is using your reserve, and when it is constantly lit you are almost bone dry!

matt - yeah i agree with you, i thought the filter should sort this?
  Skoda Fabia vRS

yea it should sort it, but, be honest guys, how many of you actually change your fuel filter ?........its supposed to be done fairly regularly, about every 12k i think, i changed mine when i bought the car, and theres another one on my back seat ready to go on

if it hasnt been changed an its knackered its not gonna filter anythin is it !

Ive found that the reserve is about 6 litres, so when the warning light comes on you can look at doing about 60 more kilos. When Ive filled my car up, Ive never been able to get more than 45 litres in.

does anyone know for the clio mk2 then? is the capacity of 50 litres inclusive of the reserve tank (supposed to be 5 litres) or can i run it completely flat till the 0 mark and still have 5 litres left for emergency?

the max i had ever managed to pump in when indicator is 0 is around 47 litres...


  Audi TT Stronic

The "reserve" tank is the same tank as your current fuel is in, they are one in the same, its just your fuel warning light will tell you when you when you got ~ 5 litres left, all cars are like this to hopefully stop you from running out of fuel

The term "reserve fuel tank" only applied to some old cars, and motorbikes that actually had a seperate reserve tank, which you had to switch a valve between one tank and another.
  2005 Audi A3 3.2 Quattro

I find that the light starts flashing when im low and when the light comes on solidly then I can easily do another 50km. Once Ive done the 50km then I fill up.

Only once did I ever run out but I knew it was going to be a close one as I was driving home from pretoria and i got home alright but the next day I started the car, reversed out of the garage, put it into 1st, and got 10m when I ran out...wasnt a problem as I live very close to a petrol station


  Audi TT Stronic

only happend to me once in an old astra, my petrol level sender thingy had sunk so it only showed a half tank when it had just been filled up.

eg. use half a tank and it showed empty.. caused a 5 mile taleback on a dual carrageway during rush hour.. ooops.. :oops:

The reserve tank on the 16V is a reality, Ive taken it out ! It holds about 2 gallons and is between the filler inlet and the main tank. When you fill up with petrol, you will always fill the reserve tank first, when this is full it will overflow into the main tank. When the main tank is near empty, fuel is pumped out of the reserve tank into the main tank. When this is happening you will hear the reserve fuel pump going on for about 40 seconds, and the fuel low light will come on permanently during this time.

O.K i had the fuel light come on last night as i got home, having driven for ages with the needle one notch off empty. I drove for twenty miles this morning before filling it up and could still only put 35 litres in it!

Im not sure if i like the idea of just guessing when im going to run out of fuel by the trip counter. I managed 270 miles on the last tank, but if its really a 50 litre tank i should be doing more like 350.

Its a real hassle having to fill it up all the time, it would be nice to go more than half a week without having to fill up, is anyone else getting these problems?

I could only ever manage 300 -310 out of my valver.

You could probably get much more range out of it, if you stick to the speed limits and never accellerate hard !! ;)

Horace, thats not going to happen.:D, when i first got the car i was only getting 180 miles out of a tank.

Jeff, i dont think its bad for the car (exept all that loss of performance from the extra weight;)). Its just hassle cos i do alot of miles and i dont want to be filling up all the time. I guess im just being compulsive obsessive (or is that obsessive compulsive?) that im not using that last bit of tank, it seems a waste to have a nice big tank and use the top of it rather than the bottom.
  Skoda Fabia vRS

Quote: Originally posted by Jeff XSi on 05 December 2002

is it bad for the car to be filled up at 1/4 full all the time?
you should always have about 1/4 of a tank left in the car, and a regularly replaced fuel filter
  BMW 320d Sport

OK this is it AFAIK (on a valver)

Total fuel capacity is 50 litres. That consists of one main tank and one reserve tank which is lower down. Under the car you can see the two tanks. Assuming its totally empty when you put the petrol in, the reserve tank fills first, once its full then the main tank fills up. The fuel pump draws petrol only from the main tank, if the main tank is empty then the light will come on and the secondary pump will pump the reserve fuel up into the main tank. What this means is that if you ignore the light and run it dry, if you put 5 litres of fuel in, you still cannot start the car because it is sitting in the reserve,and unusable until its been pumped up. Not sure about this but I think if this happens, you need to crank it over on the starter for about a minute or so to get the petrol pumped up to the main tank, then the main pump will begin to deliver to the fuel rail.

The main tank is something like 39 litres, the reserve 11. Or maybe its 43 and 7? I can never remember. Anyway , all you need to know is when you get to the light, then fill it up, and change your fuel filter every 12k miles then you will never get these problems!

Cheers Nick, will do.

Its a bit of a b**ch about the reserve tank. If you ran out of fuel and went all the way to a garage with one of those little 5 litre canisters, you would get back to your car and fill it only to find the tank still empty

while we are talking fuel.

someone on here said about the clio cups fuel gauge:

it is as accurate as a long term weather forecast. I disagree, it is less accurate than a long term weather forecast.



The handbook says the combined capacity of the fuel tanks in the 16v is 50 litres. In practice, youll rarely put in more than 43 litres at a time as the fuel gauge measures only the bigger fuel tank - and does not include the capacity in the reserve AFAIK.

I once got 350 miles out of my 16v without going on to the red light! I would probably have got about 400 miles if Id used the auxillary tank! That was while driving back from Scotland in the summer, going at a steady 3000rpm (circa 59mph!) all the way back to Wales! Not sure what the mpg was, but 50 litres is something like 11 gallons - so that would be about 40mpg. Not bad for a 16v with mods!
  BMW Z4 2.5si Sport

Almost had mine run out of fuel. Well the light was permantly on, I was 40 miles from home, and had no money. I crawled back to Worc (15 miles from home) and luckily my Mum met me there with money for fuel lol (at 1:30am)

Had 340 miles out of it before to a tank which is pretty good :D

usually does over 300 though.

Got 230 miles once! That was ragging it for three days solid on the roads around my home!!

Thats about 20mpg! Still not that bad: my dads 3.0 straight-six auto Volvo gets 10mpg around town!

Hmmm! That means that I have a very fuel efficient car!

Actually, I dont think my 1.2 was any more economical. I used to have to rag it to get anywhere!