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CEL could be on for various reasons. It could be coincidental to you running out of fuel; it could be caused by you running out of fuel. First off, I would make sure my gas cap was tight; I think I read somewhere that 80% of cel light ups are caused by fuel tank compression test failures, and 99% of those are caused by an improperly tightened gas cap.

after checking that, waits three to five days of regular use; if it is still on, I suggest a code reader. If you are keeping the van for the long-haul, a Metris compatible Scan tool is a pricey but worth it piece of equipment, especially for occasional intermittent faults, like most examples of an apparently failed PCV valve.
 

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I’ve gone as low as 10 miles left, never hit bottom so it sounds like a faulty gauge.

Best mileage I’ve achieved was 30mpg with just the wife & dog (cargo model, cruise control) on Christmas Day in CA from North to East Bay, average is 24 mostly around 1/2 full of sound gear. Even got 22 on a 2 hour trip packed to the ceiling for a festival stage and with our camping gear & 6 days of supplies!
 
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