What can be the reasons behind why the VW atlas fuel door won’t open?

This article will explain the “VW atlas fuel door won’t open” problem. The fuel tank on the VW atlas can be stuck for several reasons. Therefore, in this article, we will explain the reasons causing the atlas fuel door not to open.

Fuel doors in many vehicles are operated with the help of electric motors. However, in some budget vehicles, the fuel door is opened with the help of a latch and cable mechanism. In the vehicles which have a latch and cable mechanism for actuating the fuel door, the problems such as cable seizing up, damaged electric motor, or a rusted fuel door are some of the reasons why the fuel door doesn’t open. 

However, in the VW Atlas, the fuel door is opened with the help of a fuel door actuator which consists of an electric motor. Therefore, faults can happen in a fuel flap controlled by an electric motor. Some of the faults in a fuel tank operated by a fuel flap actuator are as follows.

What can be the reasons behind why the VW atlas fuel door won’t open?

  • Faulty Fuel door fuses
  • Damaged fuel door actuator
  • Rusted Hinge

These three causes are mainly the reasons behind a faulty fuel door. Below they are explained in detail.

Faulty Fuel door Fuses

The fuel door in the VW Atlas is operated with the help of a fuel door actuator. The fuel door actuator is operated with the help of an electric motor. A fuse is attached to the circuit to prevent the circuit from catching fire in the event of the excess voltage supply. The fuse consists of a thin wire which breaks when the motor gets overloaded. The breaking of the wire in the switch prevents the car from catching fire. 

Thus once the fuse breaks, the fuel door won’t open even when the driver presses the fuel flap.

Therefore to get the fuel flap actuator back to working condition, the fuel flap door actuator fuse needs to be replaced. The fuse is present in the fuse box of the vehicle.

Damaged Fuel Door actuator

A fuel door actuator is solely responsible for the opening and closing the fuel door in VW Atlas. However, since the actuator is exposed to the weather conditions such as rain snow, there are chances that the actuator gets damaged because the actuator consists of electrical circuits.

If the fuel door actuator gets damaged, the fuel door won’t open on pressing the fuel door. Therefore, you need to get the fuel door actuator replaced with a new one in such a case. The procedure to replace the fuel door actuator is easy, but it requires some essential tools.

Rusting of the fuel door hinge.

The fuel door actuator only unlocks the fuel door. However, the opening and closing of the fuel door are dependent on the fuel door hinge. The fuel door hinge is metal and is highly exposed to rainwater and moisture. Thus the metal used in the hinge can get rusted, which might hinder the operation of the fuel door. 

To fix the fuel door hinge and bring it back to normal working condition, you can lubricate it with the help of WD40 lubricating. Moreover, after applying the oil, you can also apply silicone-based grease, which will prevent the moisture from settling on the hinge. Thus, it won’t cause rusting of the hinge. Moreover, if the hinge has completely rusted, the best way to fix the hinge is by replacing the hinge with a new one.


This article successfully explained the “VW atlas fuel door won’t open” problem. The problem is highly common in vehicles because the fuel door is open to various atmospheric conditions such as rain snow, and thus it can get easily damaged. The article explains the three possible reasons for a faulty fuel door. In addition, a brief explanation about the remedies which can be applied to fix the fuel flap is also explained.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): VW atlas fuel door won’t open.

How big is the VW Atlas gas tank?

The gas tank on the VW Atlas is 18.6 gallons. The vehicle has a mileage of 21mpg for the city and 25mpg for the highway. 

Is the VW Atlas good on gas?

The four-cylinder model of the VW Atlas is the most efficient. It is front-wheel driven and has a mileage rating of 21 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. The more powerful V6 model has 18mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway.

Can you put regular unleaded gasoline in the VW Atlas?

Yes, you can put regular unleaded gas in the VW Atlas. Filling regular unleaded gas in the vehicle makes the vehicle’s working affordable.

Is VW Atlas High on maintenance?

A VW atlas will cost you around $7856 for maintenance and repairs during the first ten years of the service. This cost beats the industry average for popular SUV models by $1024.


  1. https://victoriamgclub.com/why-is-my-fuel-door-stuck-on-volkswagen-atlas/