300TDi vacuum-side fuel line leak - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old June 16th, 2016, 10:13 AM
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Bill
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300TDi vacuum-side fuel line leak

**Skip to BOTTOM LINE if you're not into narrative and just want to see what the issue is, AFAIK**

Right after the movers boxed up my spare parts bin, I headed to the in-laws for the evening. On I-66 I notice that (once traffic allows me to do so) I cannot go over 65, and EGT isn't even hitting 900 (normally will get up near 1200 if I floor it for a sustained period).

Once home I notice the throttle cable has worked its way loose, so I tighten it, hoping that the problem was just failure to move the injector pump arm fully.

No such luck. This a.m. could barely go 45, with power loss occurring in higher gears. I limped it back to the house, opened the bleeder valve on the fuel filter--nothing. I opened about 5 boxes, found the spare lift pump, and put it on. (pump I took off seemed to be working fine, using the finger-over-the-hole test). Lots of fuel at the bleeder right off the bat, but a quick test drive revealed power loss was still an issue. Once back at house, opened bleeder valve, nothing.

I checked the sedimenter with the engine idling--fuel level in there seems low, and there are bubbles at the top of it. Looks like its pulling bubbles in from the tank side.

I bypassed the sedimenter and tightened the hose clamps that connect the 8mm fuel hose to the rigid lines from the tank and to the lift pump and take it for another spin--seems better, but still producing no squirt at the fuel filter bleeder valve at idle after a drive, so I think the leak is still there.

Lastly, I tightened the compression fittings where the lines meet the tank. . .

***BOTTOM LINE: I apparently have a vacuum leak between the tank and the sedimenter. Obviously putting a 12V pump in after the sedimenter (which is what I've seen recommended for other vacuum leaks) won't help me.

Any thoughts on diagnosis?


Should I just cut the flexible part of the OEM line right by the tank compression fitting and run fuel hose straight from that cut to the sedimenter?
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  #2  
Old June 16th, 2016, 02:50 PM
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mdcoa
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Bill
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Update: took her for a brief highway run; taking the sedimenter out of the equation has helped with the symptoms (I think it was acting as a bubble aggregator, since the level in it would drop below the outlet) but not the problem--still topping out at 65ish and about 950 why, which is a huge improvement over this morning. But there still seems to be a leak upstream of the sedimenter--I will probably just replace the oem rubber/steel lines from tank to sedimenter with regular ok' fuel line and see if that solves it--if not it'll mean the leak is between the fuel level and the new line....


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  #3  
Old July 26th, 2016, 09:05 PM
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mdcoa
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Bill
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Thought I'd keep my one-man thread going with an update. Problem solved.

After much gnashing of teeth and a partial replacement of the line between the compression fitting and the sedimenter, I discovered that the line at the compression fitting was about 90% blocked by plastic shavings which apparently made it into the tank during the expansion of the filler port to accept diesel fuel nozzles.

I dremeled off the olive, ditched the compression fitting altogether, and used two fuel-injection hose clamps to connect the new fuel line directly to the sender, and the truck runs like a scalded cat. It did 70-80 up and down hills with the AC on for the 300 mile trip from VA to NC with over 1500 pounds of cargo on board/towed.

Lesson learned for me: don't assume bubbles in the sedimenter means a leak; they could be vacuum bubbles caused by fuel starvation, not air bubbles caused by a leak upstream from the sedimenter.
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Old July 26th, 2016, 09:41 PM
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Robert Davis
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The guy who came up the nylon line with the plastic and sometimes brass olive should go to the gallows.
Right next to the guy who invented the hot air dryer who removed the paper towels from the restrooms.
Muthalikkas


Who ever heard that joke told that way!
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Old July 27th, 2016, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdavisinva View Post
Muthalikkas Who ever heard that joke told that way!
Either way, gave me a good chuckle this morning!
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