Turbo Trans Am Fuel Pump Install

Submitted by Tom Chou

It took me and a friend about six hours to do this job, and we're fairly experienced shadetree mechanics. Note: Whenever working on fuel-related systems use appropriate safety procedures.

1) Drain the tank as much as possible.

2) Remove both tires. If you're not on a lift, put the chassis on jack stands as high as it'll go and let the axle drop all the way down. Disconnect the shocks to allow the axle to drop more. Remove the panhard rod and there's a cross brace beneath that I recall. Removing these will allow the exhaust to drop. Disconnect the exhaust at the cat, remove all muffler hangers, and swing the exhaust so it sits diagonally in the car with the muffler sticking out the right passenger side. With the axle still in the car, you can't get the exhaust out, but you don't need to. Just position it so that the "hump" of the exhaust that goes over the axle is slid all the way over to the right and resting between the axle flange (where the lug nuts go) and the inside rear right fender. Get that exhaust as far to the passenger side as possible - you just won't be able to take it completely out.

3) Remove the heat shield - lots of little bolts and one really tricky one on the passenger side!

4) Dropping that will reveal the tank, retained with two straps. Remove the bolts from the two straps and allow the tank to drop. Caution: don't bend those straps too much, as reshaping them for the install is a PAIN! Those bends are EXACTLY in the right places - too many bends will make the strap just short enough that you won't be able to get the bolts started! Get the bends exactly right and the bolts will reach & start! Take it from the voice of experience!

5) Removing the tank is a pain, as you'll have to angle it out and slide it to the right as much as possible! Note the exhaust isn't in the way - it won't clear the body on the right. The trick is to stick a long crow bar into the filler hole and bend the neck slightly! You'll see what I mean once you do it. Bending the neck slightly allows the tank to drop far enough to clear the body on the right. It's almost like the hole that the filler neck goes thru isn't large enough. The filler neck will hang on the lip of that hole. Same thing with the install. Now that the neck is bent it'll slide in easier, and the neck will be angled "down" lower in the hole from stock. This is a good way to tell which TAs have had the tank R&Red! Look at any TA tank in a salvage yard and you'll see that the neck is bent down - now we know why!

6) Installing the pump: Look carefully how everything is mounted, particularly the orientation of the fuel strainer (sock). The pulsator is a big gray rubber looking thing. Look at the main supply tube coming off the pump. It is swaged down at the end of the pickup tube where the pulsator is slid over. The pulsator connects the fuel pump to the supply tube which is part of the hanger. You will know what I am talking about when you take the pulsator off. Take a drill bit, counter sink, or circular file and open up the end of the inlet. I believe it is 1/4" or 5/16". Be sure to flush out the metal debris. Don't reuse the pulsator, use a 2-3/8" length of high-pressure fuel injection hose instead. Use mini hose clamps to secure the hose, making sure they do not short the two metal terminals on the pump. When you install the new fuel sock make sure it is facing correctly on the pump.

7) If you're thinking of installing a hot-wire kit now would be a good time to do it.

8) Reinstall the tank, exhaust & axle. Add fuel, turn the ignition on, check for leaks, start the engine, and check again for leaks.