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Flares and Flaring Tools Buyer's Guide

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If you’re looking for a braided hose near me, then Speedway Motors has you covered thanks to our nationwide distribution network. We’re primed and ready with stainless steel braided hoses free shipping available to your door, fast.

Your vehicle wouldn’t run very far without its fuel line. A vehicle’s fuel line carries fuel, gas, E85, or whatever fuels your vehicle, from the fuel tank to the carburetor or fuel rails/throttle body and injectors. Your vehicle may have a return-style fuel system, such as when older vehicles have been retrofitted with a throttle-body style EFI system. In these cases, you will also have a fuel line returning unused fuel back to the tank. There are many sizes of fuel line in many different materials. It can be a daunting task choosing the correct fuel line combination for your ride, but we’re to help you make a sound decision based on your budget, type of fuel used, carb or EFI setup, and horsepower levels. Our assortment of quality fuel line options includes everything from bulk rubber hose, stainless braided fuel line, cloth braided fuel line, steel and aluminum hardlines, and more!

How Long Do Fuel Lines Last?

Fuel hose, and especially braided line, stainless steel fuel line, and aluminum fuel line can last many years, decades even, and regular upkeep can help extend the life of fuel hose and fuel line. The enemy of fuel hose, braided line, stainless steel fuel line, aluminum fuel line, and the like, is corrosion. A super dry climate and a vehicle sitting around without fluid running through it will also reduce fuel hose life. Therefore, if you’re trying to get a vehicle back on the road after sitting many years, make sure to check the condition of the fuel line, or the fuel hose will let you know if it’s good or bad. If the vehicle in question is just a few years old, chances are the fuel hose and fuel line is in good shape. However, if the fuel system features aftermarket fuel lines or a braided fuel line kit, we recommend making sure those lines are in good condition before putting your ride back on the road. If you don’t know who installed them (they could’ve been incorrectly installed) then verify proper routing, condition, and so forth before pressurizing your fuel system. Fuel leaks are something you want to take seriously.

What Are the Symptoms of a Bad Fuel Line?

Fuel leaks are a dead giveaway, but if the fuel hose is old, cracked, or dry-rotted, it’s a good idea to replace it with a new fuel line kit. Rubber fuel hose should be treated like tires. You probably wouldn’t drive a vehicle with dry-rotted tires, so why would you trust dry-rotted rubber fuel hose?! Doing so is asking for problems. Remember, fuel leaks are extremely dangerous, so don’t take any chances.

A byproduct of a bad fuel line or fuel hose is a rough running engine, extended starting times, stalling, and more, because of either leaks or plugged filters, carb needles, or injectors from internal hose debris. Another byproduct of a defective fuel hose or fuel line is the smell of gasoline. Just because a fuel line or fuel hose has a leak, it may not be bad enough to see a drip from under the car. It could be a small leak causing fuel to run along the top or bottom of the gas tank or frame rail that doesn’t present itself on the ground as a bad leak. So, if your vehicle has a strong fuel smell, chances are you probably have a leak, but it just might not be bad enough to cause a puddle. Some braided fuel line will also allow fuel vapor to pass through as they age and the internal liner fails. Strong fuel vapor smells can also be a sign of hose age/failure that should be addressed as well.

What Is the Best Material for Fuel Lines?

Most factory fuel hose for carbureted applications is made of rubber. Most factory fuel line is made of either aluminum, steel, or stainless-steel materials. When searching for the best material for your fuel hose, you want to choose a high-quality nitrile rubber hose, which in many instances, is made even stronger by a braided fuel line or braided hose covering. However, fuel hose for a carbureted, low-pressure fuel system doesn’t have to be as heavy duty as fuel hose for a fuel injected, high-pressure fuel system. A carbureted system may run on 6 to 8 psi, whereas a fuel injected system could require 60 psi, maybe more. For that reason, you can get away with just about any fuel hose for a carbureted system, but when it comes to EFI, nitrile reinforced rubber fuel hose or PTFE is the best route. Otherwise, any aluminum or steel fuel line kit is compatible with EFI. Remember though, aluminum is easier to bend than steel tubing, so keep that in mind if you must make your own fuel line kit. 

What Size Fuel Line Do I Need?

During the muscle car era, steel fuel line size was a dead giveaway to the horsepower, or lack thereof, under the hood. Smaller 1/4 fuel line meant the car wasn’t of the ground pounding variety, but a 3/8 fuel line kit did indicate something a little spicy. When choosing steel fuel line for your ride, you can use this same guideline. A good guide here is anything under 350 horsepower, you can use 5/16 fuel line or fuel hose. If your combination makes between 350 and 450 horsepower, 3/8 fuel line or fuel hose will work well. For those of you making 450 to 600 horsepower, you’re going to need 1/2-inch fuel line.

When it comes to braided fuel line, in many instances it’s referred to as AN fuel line, and the larger the number, the larger the fuel line. As a comparison, 1/4 fuel line is the equivalent to -4 AN line, 3/8 fuel line is the equivalent to -6 and ½ fuel line is the equivalent to -8. Vehicles making significant power, over 1,000 horsepower, will need -10 AN fuel lines to keep up with fuel system needs.

When it comes to an AN fuel line kit, the feed line is most often larger than the return line. An AN fuel line kit with a -8 or -10 feed line and a -6 return line is most often the go-to in many instances for higher horsepower applications. AN fuel line is most popular in racing applications, but if you have the right AN fuel line fittings and tools, utilizing it on your street vehicle is a viable option. 

Do I Need Specific Fuel Lines to Run E85?

E85 requires more fuel volume, so you’ll need a larger than stock fuel line. The fuel line, or fuel pipe, as some manufacturers call it, needs to be large enough to carry that increased volume from the tank to the engine. We most often associate E85 with a larger than stock fuel pump and -8 or -10 AN fuel line. So yes, if you plan to run E85 in your vehicle, make sure the fuel pump and fuel line kit can carry the volume needed to keep up with demand. E85 attracts more moisture than traditional fuels, which is where its corrosion issues come from. Having E85 compliant fuel lines (both metal and rubber) will go a long way in ensuring your fuel system serves your needs for many years.