Fuel injector replacement cost

Estimates vary widely — if you’re paying out of pocket

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attendant pumping fuel to cars at gas station

Your fuel pump pushes fuel from your gas tank through your fuel lines to your engine. Then, your fuel injectors are responsible for spraying just the right amount of gas into your combustion chambers at exactly the right time. Too little, and your car won’t get power. Too much, and the engine could flood.

When one of your injectors fails, you can usually tell. You might have a rough idle, sluggish or stuttering acceleration, engine misfires or poor fuel efficiency.

So, what can you expect to pay to replace a fuel injector? Can you repair a fuel injector for less? Will cleaning them with an additive do the trick? And is there any chance you could get new fuel injectors for free?

Read on to find out.


Key insights

  • A single fuel injector can cost anywhere from $300 to over $4,000 to replace. (Your mechanic might even recommend replacing several at once.)
  • As a result, it’s hard for us to give you a useful average cost, but you can check the estimates for our sample vehicles below to get an idea of where you stand.
  • Fixing old fuel injectors isn’t common, and while cleaning them with additives may reduce carbon buildup and improve your MPG, that’s more of a preventive measure than a permanent fix.
  • Fuel injectors are supposed to last between 50,000 and 250,000 miles, so you might be covered under your bumper-to-bumper warranty, CARB Emissions warranty or a factory recall if yours fail prematurely.

How much does a fuel injector replacement cost?

The cost to replace one fuel injector can range anywhere from a couple hundred dollars to several thousand, and it really depends on the make and model of your vehicle.

On a Honda Civic, for example, the total out-the-door cost to replace a single fuel injector may be less than $500. (We found genuine Honda fuel injectors online for around $75, and labor may cost you a few hundred bucks more.)

But the cost quickly rises from there.

“Some vehicles, like BMWs, have high-pressure fuel injectors, which can range between $500 and $800 just for the part alone,” said Sean Kim, an experienced mechanic who works in the Atlanta area. Kim said replacing a fuel injector could end up costing you $4,000 more on a high-performance luxury vehicle.

Here are three vehicle-specific estimates for a fuel injector replacement from repair estimator RepairPal to give you a more specific idea of what to expect. Just keep in mind that your results will vary, especially considering the high rate of inflation on car maintenance and repairs over the last few years. (In other words, if your trusted mechanic quotes you 25% higher than these estimates, they may not be pulling your leg.)

*According to RepairPal

On top of that, your mechanic may suggest that you replace multiple fuel injectors at once. (Your car has one fuel injector for each cylinder in your engine.)

“It's recommended to replace multiple fuel injectors at a time due to the cost of labor,” said Kim. “Ultimately, it's the customer's choice, but it would be considered preventive maintenance.”

Since the cost to replace fuel injectors can rapidly escalate — even on a humble commuter car — let’s explore some possible ways to get that cost down.

Can you fix fuel injectors without replacing them?

Repairing a car’s existing fuel injectors isn’t a common practice.

“There are some performance-oriented shops out there that take apart and repair high-performance injectors,” said Nick, a service manager at another garage who preferred we didn’t publish his last name. “But for most shops, it’s a remove-and-replace situation,” he added.

OK, so repairs are out. But if fuel injectors often fail due to carbon and residue buildup — is it possible to “fix” them with a simple cleaning?

Can you fix fuel injectors by cleaning them?

Your ability to “fix” a fuel injector by cleaning it largely depends on how far gone the injector is.

By the time you’re at the point of having misfires, getting engine codes and feeling vibrations, it’s probably time to replace at least one fuel injector. ”
— Nick, service manager at an ASE-certified repair shop

If all you’re experiencing is a very mild loss of fuel economy, it’s possible that a single can of fuel additive can help your vehicle run a little better. Products like Techron, Sea Foam and Royal Purple Max-Clean work by mixing in with your gas and breaking up the gunk as they pass through your fuel system.

“You can do fuel injector cleaners via an additive to the gas tank plus a cleaner through the intake. It cleans the carbon buildup,” Nick said. Many auto enthusiasts swear by these additive products, and for $15 a can, they might be worth a try.

It’s a good idea to consult with your mechanic before trying any fuel system cleaners.

That being said, if you’re having more symptoms than just one or two lost MPG, there’s a good chance that your fuel injectors are more than just dirty.

“By the time you’re at the point of having misfires, getting engine codes and feeling vibrations, it’s probably time to replace at least one fuel injector,” Nick advised.

So, fuel injectors can be costly to replace; they can’t really be repaired; and while cleaning them probably helps, it’s more of a preventive solution than a permanent fix.

That’s a tough pill to swallow, but there’s still some possible good news.

Are fuel injectors covered under warranty?

Your fuel injectors are typically covered under your manufacturer’s powertrain warranty, which can last for up to 10 years or 100,000 miles from the date your car was sold to its first owner, depending on the manufacturer. If you’re not sure whether you still have any factory warranty remaining, you can usually look it up using your vehicle identification number.

If your bumper-to-bumper warranty is expired, you may still be in luck, though — if you live in one of these locations:

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • Maine
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Vermont

Vehicles in these places may qualify for a special CARB Emissions warranty, which covers your fuel and emissions system for up to seven years or 70,000 miles from new. To find out if your vehicle is covered, call your automaker’s local dealership.

» LEARN: What does a car warranty cover?

It’s also worth noting that fuel injectors are far more reliable on some vehicles than others. “The fuel injectors in the Mazda Miata are so good that I can count on one hand the number of injectors we’ve replaced in 30 years,” said Hector, another privacy-minded shop manager. “They’re like old Japanese radios — they just don’t die.”

But not all fuel injectors are made to the same standard. “The newer Hondas, 2018 and up, have pretty significant injector issues,” claimed Nick.

If your vehicle has known fuel injector issues — and you’re concerned about having to pay out of pocket to replace them in the future — you might consider buying an extended warranty.

“The issue was a bad fuel injector. … There's a $100 deductible … but compared to what I would put out if I had to pay for the fix myself, the deductible is sweet,” wrote an extended warranty reviewer from Florida. “When it gets close to the year or mileage, I hope that they would send me out something to be able to renew it because I’ll definitely renew it.”

You don’t necessarily need to purchase top-shelf coverage, either — many midtier coverage plans cover your entire fuel system, including all four, six or eight fuel injectors. Just know that extended warranties don’t cover preexisting conditions, so you have to buy ahead of time if you want your fuel injector replacement covered.

» SEE OUR TOP PICKS: Best Extended Car Warranty Companies

It’s also possible that the manufacturer of your car has already admitted that your fuel injectors were faulty from the factory. In this case, they’ll issue a recall and commit to repairing your fuel injectors 100% for free. For example, a few years ago Ford issued a recall for the fuel injectors on 2021 to 2023 Ford Bronco Sports and 2020 to 2022 Ford Escapes.

To find out if your vehicle qualifies for any free recall repairs, visit NHTSA.gov.

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FAQ

What is a fuel injector?

A fuel injector is responsible for spraying fuel into one of your engine’s combustion chambers so that it can mix with the right amount of oxygen and ignite. More than just a nozzle, fuel injectors are complex pieces of engineering that contain springs, solenoids and filters to ensure the exact right amount of atomized fuel enters the chamber at exactly the right time.

What are the signs of a bad fuel injector?

Common signs of a bad fuel injector include bad fuel economy, rough idling, and slow or stuttering acceleration. Engine codes P0301 through P0312 generally indicate misfires in specific cylinders (e.g., P0304 is a misfire in cylinder four).

Should you replace all of your vehicle's fuel injectors?

Depending on the make and model of your vehicle, your mechanic may recommend replacing multiple fuel injectors even if only one has failed. Some vehicles have far less durable fuel injectors than others, and one injector failing could be a sign that the rest are on their way out, too. Plus, replacing multiple injectors at once can save you hundreds of dollars on labor (and a tow back to the shop).


Article sources
ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. Specific sources for this article include:
  1. RepairPal, “Fuel Injector Replacement Cost.” Accessed Feb. 23, 2024.
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