On my car (2005 Dodge Grand Caravan) when I fill up my gas tank, almost immediately afterwards pulling out of the gas station my van sputters, misses, hesitates, call it what you will. The past couple of times the engine has actually stalled as well.

This is very short term. After this quick event it is then fine for the rest if the tank of gas.

Any thoughts on what could cause this?? Thanks!


Some clarification on the symptoms, after I pull out from the gas state a few seconds down the road it's about a half second sputter/hesitation from the engine. And then it recovers. And then another few seconds later, the same hesitation will happen.

This is going from a really empty tank to a full tank. I always fill it up, and let it go down to almost empty (a few gallons left in the tank when I refill).

  • 1
    Is this with a full tank? Or just when you put any amount of gas in the vehicle? How long does the hesitation last (what exactly does "short term" mean ... minute, two, ?? )? Which engine does your vehicle have in it? Apr 12, 2015 at 15:22
  • @Paulster2 That's from going from a pretty empty tank to a completely full tank (I typically only fill up the tank when I need gas, i.e. empty, and I always fill the tank to the brim). The hesitation lasts for probably only a half second, happening a couple of times with a few seconds between. So... pulling out of a gas station onto the highway, 10 seconds later the engine hesitates/sputters for .5 seconds, and then recovers. Then a couple of seconds later another half second hesitation happens. Maybe not a half second, it's quite quick. The engine is the v6 engine. Apr 13, 2015 at 15:05
  • @DucatiKiller No check engine lights at all. Apr 13, 2015 at 19:33
  • I have the exact same problem except I always fill my tank before I get to a half a tank. I have a 2004 Dodge SXT. I was told the fuel filter is inside the gas tank which to me is a poor design. What I do is after I put gas in my car I sit and wait. I let the car run before leaving. This seems to help somewhat. Very frustrating problem.
    – user20167
    Jul 28, 2016 at 18:12

2 Answers 2


This sound similar to what I have experienced when there is rust or other "crud" in the bottom of the gas tank. Letting it get VERY low then filling it will stir up the "crud" and allow it to temporarily clog things up until it settles back down.

To confirm if this is whats happening, try filling up before the fuel level drops below half a tank. Do that a few times and see if it improves. By not letting the tank drop below 1/2, you create a buffer that prevents the introduction of new gas from disturbing the "crud" that has settled in the bottom of the tank.

  • Ok I will give this a try at next fillup. So you're saying wait until tank is 1/2 and fill to 100%, or let tank go to about empty and then fill to 1/2 tank? Apr 13, 2015 at 19:34
  • Wait until tank is 1/2 and fill to 100%. Apr 13, 2015 at 23:02
  • As mentioned by Mike... When I say full or 100% I mean until the pump shuts off. Apr 14, 2015 at 15:05

When the tank is going to be completely filled the proper procedure is to allow the pump to shut off automatically. Add no more fuel after this initial shut off. Over filling the tank by filling to "the brim" can cause the evaporative emissions system to be damaged or rendered inoperative. The system is designed to control and process fuel vapor not liquid fuel. This may be the cause of your hesitation. At your next fill up, fill the tank until the pump shut off and add no more. Let us know if this remedies the problem.

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