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the gauge only works sometimes and when it does it never gets above half a tank and then fluctuates between half and E. any ideas
 

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Hi I got a sierra but I got a wire that goes into the gas tank and there might be a clip there some where so if you look at the back of the car near the gas tank look for some sort of connection it might be loose or shorting out just some thing to check I hope that fixes your problem :)
 

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I have the same problem with mine and after checking other owners I find it is a common problem. The float in the tank afer 20 years get soaked
Sturgeon95 and no longer want to float like it should. Most people just learn to cope with it. It is a lot of work to drop the tank and replace the sending unit. Cost of a new unit is about $35.00
 

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Think of it this way... The sensor at the tank runs across a coil. As the fuel level changes, the sensor slides up and down the coil. Over the years the winds of the coil start to wear through. As the fuel level goes up and down now, it loses contact as it goes over winds that are no longer connected like before. The level goes up and down, but the gauge no longer receives a complete, smooth signal.
This is why the gauge doesn't just slump and read empty all the time. When mine first started to go, it showed full, but as it got closer to half a tank it would drop down to almost empty for the last 100 miles.

Bottom line, when the gauge starts to lose connectivity, replace the tank sensor.
 
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