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99 Millenia fuel gauge problem.

rbrubakerrbrubaker Posts: 54
edited March 2014 in Mazda
I purchased a 99 Millenia S in Jan. The fuel gauge
would display low, and the fuel light would go on
at 240 miles (driving range is 360 miles). Mazda
worked on a solution, and tried to fix it. It's now
worse - in my opinion. It more accurately displays
the amount of fuel in the tank, but the warning
light never goes on. The fuel gauge never displays
completely full (take 30 minutes to go to it's
highes point) and never displays completely empty.
The only way I know I can go 330 miles, is because
that's when I ran out of fuel. The dealer says
Mazda is working on it, but it has been 3 months
with no response. Mazda America says they do not
get involved in technical matters, and I'll have to
work it out with the dealer.


  • I purchased a Millenia in September 1999. My fuel gauge is very slow to read full. I am accustomed to my fuel gauge reading full once I have finished pumping my gas. I have never allowed my tank to go below the 1/4 tank mark. I think I will just to make sure it will register. I hope Mazda has some solutions to your problem.
  • marak88marak88 Posts: 57
    I've bought my mellinia S last Jan (99) and my fuel gauge take about 5 minutes to read full, and reads almost empty (1/8 of a tank) at around 240 miles, but the low fuel light does not come on unless its about 4-5 gallons from empty. I found that out by letting the low fuel light come on then went to the nearest gas station and it took 13.5 gallons of gas, do the math (18 gallon tank - 13.5 will give you 4.5 gallons.

    does any one get the 28 mpg on the highway and the 20 mpg in the city.
  • bobs5bobs5 Posts: 557
    Since my first experience with a faulty fuel gauge, I reset the trip meter at every fill up and monitor how many miles have been driven on the tank of fuel before the next fill up.

    The car which taught me this lesson was a 1976 amc hornet, the fuel sending gauge in the tank would get stuck and show a quarter tank of fuel left....NOT!
    Lucky for me, I was only a mile from home when it ran out.
  • No, I never came close to 28 mpg. The best I got was 23, driving approx. 70 mph on the freeway. The worst I got was 19 mpg. See the Millenia S topic under sedans, A number of people there have some comments on mpg.
  • I took out a 3-year lease on a 1999 Mazda Millenia in July. I haven't had any problems with the fuel gauge. This is my third my experience Mazda fuel gauges do not just pop up to full when you fill up. So...I do not believe anything is wrong with your fuel gauges...just give them a few minutes. So far my gas light has not come on; however, that is because I fill up at a quarter tank like the owner's manual suggests. It usually takes 12 gallons when I fill up. I guess I might run it down one time to see if the light works. I never had any problems with the light in my 626. I'm not sure what mpg I have been getting.
  • First of all, you should be able to use more then 13 gallons of an 18 gallon tank before fill ups. Why have such a large tank if you cannot utilize it?

    Second of all, my light does not work at all! With my gas gauge not showing empty, and the low fuel light off, I still ran out of gas!

    This is not satisfactory for a $30K car.
  • I didn't let my tank run down yet...because I was about to go on a long drive...but this time it took 13.69 gallons to be exact. I feel that the Millenia is a great car...I don't know why everyone is complaining about the fuel gauge. No car is perfect.
  • My gas light works!
  • How many gallons did it take when you filled it up? Prior to the fix they performed on my car, it only took 12.5 gallons, and the light worked. After the fix, the light stopped working.
  • 13 gallons. I'm wondering...maybe you should ask some people with older Millenias too. My parents use to have a 95 seemed like in their Millenia there was not much gas left when the light came on. Wonder if Mazda had too many people run out of gas and adjusted it. Just a hypothesis.

    One other comment...I drove my boss's 99 Jaguar XJ8 today...while I was out I filled the gas tank...if you think the Millenia takes a long time to show the time I got back in the Jag it still didn't show full!
  • The 2.3l blown engine is a prime example of adding excess complexity for no gain. My 93 3.0l 190 horse Maxima got better gas mileage (20 vs 22 mpg under similar driving conditions) and better acceleration. Traded in at 108,000 miles with virtually no reliability problems. My 99 S can't get over 23mpg on a trip at 75mph where the Maxima would get 27-28. Mazda's credibility is a real issue with me!
  • I just bought a used 97 Millenia L. I ran 125 miles on a full tank and the gauge read under half full. I thought the mileage was way off, stopped to fill up and only put in 5+ gallons to fill up again. I was glad to see this board so that I know it is just one of the querks of the car.
  • After calling Mazda America, nothing much happened, until I returned the survey they sent me inquiring about how pleased I was with the service. My response to the survey was not pleasant. Within a week I got a call from my dealer to schedule an appointment to bring the car in. I guess they really do read those surveys. I took the car in Dec 27th and they made a another repair. A Mazda representative and mechanic from Mazda America were at the dealer to perform the work. Stay tuned for the results from my first fill-up.
  • I estimate the car would have taken about 14 gallons when the low fuel light turned on (I was not close to any fuel station when it went on). Everything is working to my satisfaction.
  • That sounds about right...I have finally let my gas light come on a few times. 14 gallons sounds right.
  • I bought my S in July 98,a 99 model. That fuel gauge and low fuel light damn hear drove me 'round the bend until I decided, like several have said, to drive by the odometer. It's a shame to have to do but still. I took it in for a Schedule B recently and since then the light has been working regularly and the gauge does get to register fully full. I don't know how long the miracle will last nor why it has occurred, but pray with me.
  • Oops, I meant I bought a '98 S, in July 98. The 99's have a great price, but I don't like the muscular wheels, and I don't care much for the white/clear front turn signal lights, they took away the pretty contrast. Even with it's thin metal, I love this car, but I had to move it away from the oak tree in the driveway, switching places with my '93 GMC Sierra pickup. Those twigs that dented the Millenia bounce harmly off of the Sierra. It's a damn shame but still I love the car....although I'm pretty sure that by the time I am ready to buy another car something totally terribly bad will have happened to the Millenia that I will not buy another one, just remember this one fondly.
  • I bought a 2000 Millenia S on November 30th and the fuel gauge has consistently indicated empty with the light coming on when I can only add 13.5 gallons to the tank (18 gallon capacity). Seems like the problem everyone else has. I will see what the dealer (Koons Mazda in Marlow Heights, MD)thinks when I take it in for the first oil change.
  • When my fuel light comes on..It takes about 11 gallons to fill my tank meaning there is still another 7 gallons left. According to the manual, this light should come on at about 2.4 gallons. My car has been to the dealer twice for this. They replaced the senders in the tank but that didn't fix the problem..It's nice to know I'm not alone...Before I took it to the dealer, my guage would NEVER read full..almost full, but never full..After they replaced the sender, it did.. But the other problem persists..
  • This site lists all the recalls and TSB's, including the one about our fuel guages
  • I took the car in for an oil change and checkup last week. To my surprise, I noticed that the fuel gauge was dead! Dead, dead, dead!!! No reading at all, and no low fuel light! Later that evening, it started working again, and has been working ever since. Go figure! Oh, another thing, they also lost the key for the wheel lug nuts when they rotated the tires.
  • Hey, I've got the mil S "99", is it possible that Mazda got the size of the tank wrong in the manual, the manual says it has an 18 Gal tank. Yet when my gage says "E" I can only put 14 Gal??? Or is it just my gage?
  • There's only one way to find out. All we have to do is drive our cars until we run out of gas, then call Mazda Roadside Assistance. BTW...last time I filled up I put in 15 gallons.
  • Don't get me wrong I've already thought about that, it just seems like more hassel then its worth. Also not sure if anybody has had this problem, I got my S in Nov, I had to take it back to the dealer( actually two different dealers), a total of 5 times, we had a vibration problem that wouldn't go away, the dealer thought it was a balance prob. with my tires, then they thought it was an alingnment prob? then they tried to ignore my prob. and finally I talked(ha ha) them into replacing my Dunlops with Goodyears and my problem dissapeared, and I wasn't the only customer with this same problem. I've got the 17" polished wheels, I'm not sure if the goodyears are the best choice but they seem to be working.
  • I was told that the tanks hold 18 gallons, and only 17 of then are usable. Yes, tanks, there are two of them. I can verify usable fuel level, because when I was waiting for the low fuel light to go on (never did), I ran out of gas, and It took right around 17 gallons. (the fuel light problem has been fixed since then)

    I hate the Dunlaps. The car pulled when I bought the car. To fix it, they replaced one tire. Now that the tires have been rotated, it's pulling again. Although not as bad. I can't wait until these tire wear out.

    todd52 - It was like pulling teeth to get that one tire. How did you get them to replace all tires with another brand?

    All in all, I love my Millenia. It drives great! I don't think for the money there is a better looking or driving car. Well, maybe the TL, but it looks too much like and Accord.
  • RBRUBAKER- I took my car back to the dealership a week after I got it and complained of the vibration- they balanced the tires, it didn't help ,I took it back a few weeks later- they did a high speed balance with the wheels on the car,and an alignment, it didn't help, I took it back a third time and told the manager to drive it, he did, and he decided their was no problem, so the fourth time I took it to another Mazda dealership, explained my problem, they went ahead and balanced the tires, it didn't help, but they suggested the car may have been sitting for a while with out being driven so the tires could have "flat spots" so he suggested I take the car back the dealership I bought it at and get them to replaced the tires. So when I got around to calling the original service manager it turns out he had been fired, and the new service manager had heard of this problem and was more than willing to put new tires on, plus he looked at my stack of service records and I dropped the phras Lemon thing you know old Jed's a millionare....
  • caspeycaspey Posts: 3
    Ok, here's my latest with my 98 S. I took it to the dealer I got it from (Rosenthal Mazda in Arlington VA) after trying a different dealer first. Things I heard about Rosenthal had made me shy away. They changed the sender units, and now the fuel gauge reads right, it even goes a little over the full mark when I fill it to the rim. What got me going was that the gauge had gotten to where when the car was full it would read slightly less than 3/4. Since I had a turn signal indicator assembly that had moisture in it ever since I got the car, this was a good time to get this stuff done. Oh yeah, in the interest of total honesty it was when it developed a horrible squeak in a link (I think it was) that was the tipping point for me.

    They installed new sensors, a new assembly, and links, all warranty, no charges. I left all fired up and nobody to scream at, but after I decompressed I was very happy.
  • The last time my gas light came on it actually took 16.15 gallons to fill up. Wonder if this will happen from now on or if it was just a one time thing? Next time it will probably come on at 13 gallons as usual.
  • rbrubakerrbrubaker Posts: 54
    Mine seems to be working consistently at about 13.5-14 gallons. It's comforting to know that the gauge now reads accurately. How does your millenia track? Mine will pull or drift depending on how the tires are rotated. I had one replaced, but I think they replaced the wrong one.
  • The last time I had my car serviced, which was at the beginning of this month...the car drove much better after having the tires rotated and oil changed.
This discussion has been closed.