P1200 code — how to fix error fast
Dive deeper into the P1200 code. Understand its essence for maintaining a car's prime state.
Problem codes like P1200 are the worst kind you can get after an OBD2 scan in your car since these directly impact your car’s powertrain and its performance. This code is one of the most common that drivers may encounter, but most drivers aren’t familiar with the P1200 code meaning.
That’s why our team wanted to give you a thorough explanation of the code and what it stands for, along with going over the main causes and ways of determining the one causing the code in your car. After that, we’ll tell you exactly which steps to take to fix and remove the code, so let’s get into it.
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What does the P1200 code mean?
The P1200 code refers to a malfunction in the fuel pump relay circuit. This malfunction can cause the fuel pump to stop functioning, which can lead to a range of issues such as stalling, difficulty starting the engine, or even complete engine failure.
In case you get this code in your car, you may be looking at symptoms like the “check engine” light being on, poor engine performance, or engine stalling.
Also, it’s worth pointing out that if the fuel pump fails to activate once you put the key into the ignition, you may not be able to start your car due to low fuel pressure. So, it goes without saying that this code could impact the vital systems of your vehicle for the worse.
What causes the P1200 code?
This code can be triggered by a variety of factors and it’s not just the faulty fuel pump. There are numerous potential reasons behind this code and it takes knowing them all to properly determine the one causing the code in your car.
Defective Fuel Pump Relay
The fuel pump relay is responsible for activating the fuel pump. If this relay is defective, it can cause the fuel pump to malfunction, leading to the P1200 code.
Faulty fuel pump
A faulty fuel pump can also cause the P1200 code. If the fuel pump is not functioning properly, it can cause a lack of fuel pressure, leading to engine stalling or failure to start.
Wiring or connection issues
Wiring or connection issues in the fuel pump circuit can cause this code. This can include loose or corroded connections, damaged wiring, or a faulty connector.
Failed fuel pump control module
In some cases, a failed fuel pump control module can be the cause of the P1200 code. This module is responsible for regulating the fuel pump’s operation, and if it fails, it can cause the fuel pump to stop working.
Which car models does the P1200 code affect the most?
While the code may appear in almost any car that uses a fuel pump system, we’ve seen a fair share of reports on certain vehicles that are more prone to the code than others. So, here’s a complete overview of such car models:
- BMW 3 Series: The P1200 code often indicates a problem with the fuel injector or fuel pressure regulator in the 3 Series model.
- Ford Fusion: Ford vehicles that have been reported to have issues with the code include the Fusion and a few other compact models. The code usually indicates a problem with the fuel injectors or fuel system pressure.
- Chevy Malibu: In Chevrolet cars, the code can be caused by several factors, including a faulty fuel pressure regulator or a clogged fuel filter. Some Chevrolet models that may be affected include the Impala, Malibu, and Silverado.
How to diagnose the P1200 code
To diagnose the P1200 code, you will need to use a diagnostic tool. This tool will read the code and provide you with information on what is causing the issue. Here are the steps to diagnose the code:
Check the fuel pump relay
The first step is to check the fuel pump relay. You can use a multimeter to test the relay and determine if it is working properly. If it isn’t the fuel pump probably isn’t getting the charge and that’s what’s causing it to malfunction and trigger the code.
Check the fuel pump
If the fuel pump relay is functioning properly, the next step is to check the fuel pump. You can do this by checking the fuel pressure using a fuel pressure gauge.
Inspect the wiring and connections
If the fuel pump and relay are working properly, the next step is to check the wiring and connections in the fuel pump circuit. You can do this by inspecting the wiring and connections for damage or corrosion.
Check the fuel pump control module
If everything else checks out, the final step is to check the fuel pump control module. You can do this by testing the module with a multimeter or by checking the voltage of the module.
How to fix the P1200 code
Once you have diagnosed the code, you’ll be equipped to tackle the issue properly and deal with the faulty component that’s causing it. Here’s what you can do depending on what you’ve revealed to be the source of the code in your car:
Replace the fuel pump relay
If the fuel pump relay is the issue, you will need to replace it. This is a relatively simple fix that can be done in a short amount of time.
Replace the fuel pump
This is a more involved fix that may require a professional mechanic to do the repairs. Once you replace the fuel pump, you should be able to restore the pressure to the fuel delivery system and get your vehicle to run properly again. The cost of replacing a fuel pump is around $400 to $600 on average for most vehicles.
Repair the wiring and connections
In case the wiring or connections are the issue, you will need to repair or replace them. It’s one of the simplest solutions to the issue and can be done in a short period with as little as $100 or $150 spent on repairs.
How to prevent the P1200 code
Preventing the code P1200 from re-appearing can be as simple as performing some ordinary maintenance tasks on your vehicle. These include the following steps to take:
- Regularly changing the fuel filter
- Checking the fuel pressure regularly
- Inspecting the fuel pump circuit for damage or corrosion
- Checking the fuel pump control module regularly
By performing these preventative measures, you can help prevent the code from occurring in your car.
Overall, the code P1200 is a pretty serious one and could even lead to problems starting your car or improper engine operation if left unattended. So, we hope that this guide is just what you need to properly repair the issue and avoid having to deal with the code again anytime soon.
Is it safe to drive with the P1200 code?
It’s generally not recommended to drive with the P1200 code, as it can lead to further engine damage over time.
How serious is the P1200 code?
The severity of the P1200 code depends on the underlying cause. If left unchecked, it can cause damage to the engine and reduce fuel efficiency.
Can I clear the P1200 code myself?
While it’s possible to clear the code using an OBD-II scanner, it’s important to remember that clearing the code without fixing the underlying issue will only cause it to reappear later on.