An engine can only hold a certain amount of fuel at a time, depending on its size and capacity. Such fuel amount will last only up to a very minimal distance. In order to run for several miles, it should have an extra fuel supply which is held by the fuel tank. Eventually, this fuel reserve needs to be delivered into the combustion chamber for consumption. And it's the fuel pump that's responsible for that particular job.
A conditioned Oldsmobile fuel pump transfers the fuel into the engine with the right pressure and quantity. Aside from that, it enables to effectively pump only the liquid elements of the fuel, significantly preventing vapor lock. And for efficiency of its operation, the pump is normally installed between the engine and tank, either to the engine itself or on the frame rail. Engine-mounted fuel pumps are powered by the mechanical energy generated by the powerhouse. While the ones integrated on the frame rail work with the use of electricity, the same as with the modern vehicles that have them inside the fuel tank.
Fuel pumps need to perfectly match the volatility of the fuel in order to maximize its use, and would essentially differ with their applications. If your Oldsmobile is run by a carbureted gasoline engine, then it is most probably equipped with a spring-load diaphragm-type mechanical pump. There are as well electric-driven or solenoid-operated diaphragm fuel pumps. And in other fuel-injection systems, the in-tank pump may serve merely as high-pressure fuel-injection pump's supply pump. The same way, diesel engine also use in-tank fuel tank to supply the injection pump with fuel, which can be of gear, plunger or sliding-vane type.
Diagnosing an Oldsmobile fuel pump can be very simple. You'd only need to disconnect the pump from the fuel line and let the fuel flow into a separate container. If no fuel goes out of the pump, then something's probably wrong with it or with one of the vital components affecting its operation. With modern fuel delivery systems however, it is best to have the job done by an expert machinist due to the complexity of their designs. And if incase, it's discovered to have been severely damaged, PartsTrain can readily provide replacement. Our online store also carries extensive selection of high-performance Oldsmobile fuel pumps for improved fuel delivery.