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Author Topic: warning on fuel filters  (Read 2020 times)
white-eagle
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« on: March 04, 2010, 12:27:46 PM »

i pulled into a campground today, after driving for 3 hours, to find some diesel fuel running out the back right bumper.  On investigating, the plastic bowl of the bottom of the filter was lying on the floor in the storage area where the A/C compressor used to be.  can't remember if there was a gasket, but none now.  My primary fuel filter is metal with a plastic, see-thru bowl at the bottom that screws on.  i think its to collect water in the fuel line and allow it to be drained out a smaller bottom cap into a catch pan.

no diesel showing on my toad, so it doesn't look like it's been draining for the last 3 hours.  i did fill up this morning before i left, but i didn't check the engine compartment today.  The filter was changed in mid december. 

i checked oil levels and transmission levels in wally world lot a few days ago and didn't notice any drips.

anyone ever seen a fuel filter bottom bowl just come off like that?  i don't know why it would have just dropped off when i killed the engine, but it sure seems like it did!

if nothing else, i guess this is fair warning to occasionally check for loose filters.  anyone else see this happen ever?
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Tom
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Fran was called to a higher duty 12/16/13. I lost my life navigator.
rv_safetyman
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« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2010, 01:45:21 PM »

Hi Tom.  We need more data.  Is this the engine fuel filter (would guess not), or an auxiliary filter for the generator or Aqua-Hot?

If for the engine, it is obviously not the OEM canister filters.  We will need to know what make you have.

If it is an auxiliary filter, we will also need to know the manufacturer.

As I said above, I doubt it is the engine filter.  If it was, I would think you would have lost prime.

Jim
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Jim Shepherd
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JackConrad
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« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2010, 03:23:23 PM »

Jim,
   Talking to Tom today, I think it is a Racor filter and I think it probably is the engine filter as his generator is in the front bay on the drivers side, but I may be wrong. I think it happened just as he pulled in & shut the engine off. If so, he was VERY lucky.  Jack
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white-eagle
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« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2010, 04:58:21 AM »

good morning,

jim, it most definitely was the engine filter.  i didn't see a brand name, but it's the one they put on in December when i had all filters changed, and lube job. i had just pulled in to the campground, my wife went in to register, i shut the engine off and went back to unhook the toad.  i had a wet mark about 20" diameter and drips off the bumper.  lifted the hood and foound the plastic on the floor of the compartment.  i'm guessing about an ounce of fuel when it fell off. 
we had been going north on i-75, doing about 70 for the last 40 mi.  only 2 mi from i-75 to the campground.

like jack said, seems darn lucky, if it was loose, that it didn't fall off before, while going down the road.

i should mention that i put it back the filter back together, looked things over, finished disconnecting the toad, then started it right back up and drove to campsite.  no problem other than the loss of an ounce of very expensive fuel.
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Tom
1991 Eagle 15 and proud of it.
8V92T, 740, Fulltime working on the road.

Fran was called to a higher duty 12/16/13. I lost my life navigator.
gumpy
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« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2010, 05:05:30 AM »

Yeah, this must have happened just as you stopped because without the bowl, fuel will not pass through the filter to the engine. If it had fallen off while
on the road, your bus would have stopped within about 1/2 a mile.

There should be a gasket on, or in the bowl, I believe.

craig
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Craig Shepard
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rv_safetyman
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« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2010, 05:16:27 AM »

Tom, you probably have something like the PS120 type filter (http://www.parker.com/literature/Racor/14401_Rev_-_PS120_Series.pdf).  If so, there is a gasket and I doubt you will be able to run without it.  If this is not your filter, just shorten the link and look at other Parker/Racor filters.

These types of filters are generally self-priming, but the pump will pull air without the gasket when you need high fuel flow rates. 

As you see from the picture, the bowl is a screw on.  My guess is that the person changing the filter did not get it on tight.

Jim
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Jim Shepherd
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« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2010, 05:43:52 AM »

Look around in the compartment for an O-ring or round flat gasket the diameter of the bowl. I'm pretty sure it uses one, and may have separated when the bowl fell off. Without it, I think you would have been leaking fuel the entire time you drove it (my experience- YMMV).
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DaveG
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« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2010, 03:52:29 PM »

Any chance this filter is not being used...as in disconnected but had residual fuel in it?
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white-eagle
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« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2010, 05:13:29 PM »

the rest of the story.
got ready to leave this morning and the engine sounded really rough, finally revved up a little.  since we had to be out by noon, i put it into gear - nothing.  seemed like the transmission was binding or something, but wouldn't move off square one.  Finally talked to Jack Conrad who said could just be sucking air, especially if no gasket.  so i took the filter bowl back off, yes there was an o-ring.
so i have no pump, no diesel to the rack, and now i've really lost prime.  
Called Coach net.  they put a "tech" who said he had some idea what i was talking about,  and they'd send a mobile repair if i wanted.  i asked them to have the mobile repair company call so i didn't waste money paying for service.  Seems the ad was a little misleading in that coach net only covers the mobile service initial fee and mileage, not full service as the brochure seems to say.  anyway, the mobile service was a hook, and when i told the guy the problem, he very nicely declined to participate.  he did suggest a local guy that 2 other people had also suggested.  JB at JB's Welding.  
JB didn't have time until tomorrow, but said it was easy to do and let me borrow his pump kit, gave me 2 new filters and suggested i pitch the filter with the plasic bowl because they really aren't dependable, as i now know too well.
we pumped the fuel back in and runs fine.  JB charged me $25 for the 2 filters.  i gave him a $25 tip and a promise to use him again.  he works on buses, welding, new doors, panels, as well as engines, tires, etc.  Just outside of Bushnell and Webster in Florida.  
So, most of this problem could have been a small one if i had put the filter back together and revved the engine to pull the fuel back in.  i didn't.  i idled over to the campsite and figured all was well.  it wasn't.  overnight, the fuel ran back down to the filter.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2010, 05:30:13 PM by white-eagle » Logged

Tom
1991 Eagle 15 and proud of it.
8V92T, 740, Fulltime working on the road.

Fran was called to a higher duty 12/16/13. I lost my life navigator.
white-eagle
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« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2010, 05:37:49 PM »

also, credits to Jack Conrad for phone advice, John Silver for his suggestions, Ray Edwards who stopped by to visit and ended up helping, and figured out which line to pull for the pump since we couldn't pull the plug off the filter for the pump where i wanted and thought we had to use. 
i still can't believe that the filter just came apart that way, but i sure am glad it happened when i pulled into the campground instead of on I75.

Sorry these stories illustrate my misunderstandings of engines and repairs, but i believe that sharing my goofs might help a few others.  if you haven't had the experience, sometimes it's hard to recognize the problem or know the alternative methods to get going again.
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Tom
1991 Eagle 15 and proud of it.
8V92T, 740, Fulltime working on the road.

Fran was called to a higher duty 12/16/13. I lost my life navigator.
gumpy
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« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2010, 05:43:53 PM »

And now you know why we put electric priming pumps in our system.  Roll Eyes
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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2010, 08:48:08 PM »

I've met a few of the JB type, especially on our first trip when we had a number of mechanical adventures.

We seemed to have been blessed at meeting these types every place we stopped. We always had a problem near a good service business, never broke down alongside the hwy.

I,  too, was generous with the tips because I know how valuable these guys are and we need to keep them happy.

May the JB types live on forever and we nuts be able to find them!!
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PD4107-152
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niles500
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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2010, 11:37:59 PM »

****** Sorry these stories illustrate my misunderstandings of engines and repairs, but i believe that sharing my goofs might help a few others ********

Never be sorry for sharing your goofs - you are to be commended - too often people are self conscious about such nonsense and those who are watching lose valuable info - There are no egos nor should there be - To the contrary we are all stymied and befuddled when no one gives the "rest of the story" ala Paul Harvey - And thanks for the tip on JB, can your give us some contact info - Lots of people travel 75 between Ocala an Tampa - Thanks again
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« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2010, 12:16:50 AM »

Pale Flyer,

Where is your post that reads:  Pump?   What pump?  What was that about a pump?  Hello! Anybody?

Ya gotta stay on top of these things.

Good words Gumpy Dog Thanks,  I also read that and thought "he didn't say anything about filling the filter reservoir with D before he screwed it back in place. Can he get away with that?" Would he have been OK if he had simply primed the filter? 

John
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white-eagle
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« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2010, 05:10:16 AM »

John Batten, JB's Welding, (352) 303-2418, and his shop is about 5 miles east of I75 bushnell exit on state route 471, just North of Webster.  JB responds pretty quick on the phone, and will do what he can; i don't think he has a clock, so an emergency call might work.  His shop isn't much to look at, but he had 3 Prevosts and a couple Eagles he was working on, and looked like he could do whatever was needed.  in my case, he knows me and my cousin, so he let me borrow his pump.  not sure he loans tools regularly.  his prices always seem reasonable.  i got a used toe kick electric heater for $75, and as i said, the 2 filters he wanted about $25 for.

This makes the 3rd time i've used JB.  No complaints from me.
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Tom
1991 Eagle 15 and proud of it.
8V92T, 740, Fulltime working on the road.

Fran was called to a higher duty 12/16/13. I lost my life navigator.
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