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Old 08-24-2010, 06:06 PM   #1
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Default FUEL PUMP

Hi, have a 95RT Dodge Ram 3500 Magnum V8 318 engine. I am planning a trip this winter down to Mexico and was talking to someone with a 92 RT same engine who had a lot of fuel problems on a visit down there. He had to get two fuel pumps replaced due to dirty gas. He told me that his mechanic here dropped the tank and replaced the whole fuel pump assembly with a pump that he can only describe as having a filter the size of a pop can. Any info on this subject such as types of pump replacments and sources greatly appreciated as I would rather be safe than sorry on this upcoming trip.
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Old 08-24-2010, 07:50 PM   #2
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Default Re: FUEL PUMP

Replacing the in-tank fuel pump is no small endeavor, in that draining and dropping the tank is the biggest part of the job. The electric fuel pump located in the tank has the fuel level sensor, the electric pump and a strainer on the intake side of the pump. It all comes as a unit and can be a pretty pricey job when not done yourself. Mexican fuel has always been a problem with contaminants and you sort of "pays your dollars and takes your chances" so to speak. There is really no easy way to filter the fuel that goes into the tank as I assume you already know so that leaves the little filter on the intake side of the fuel pump to protect your fuel system. The inline filter between the tank and the engine will trap most all of anything that gets by the intake filter. I always carry a couple of these wherever I go with my rig as they are easy to change and cheap, $5 to $10 apiece. However, if the intake filter in the tank gets plugged with debris, then the only alternative is to drop the tank and change it out. If I were worried about this, I would do it well ahead of time and physically inspect the new "pop can sized" filter to ensure that it really is bigger than the original. Frankly, I have never seen one that size in all my years of turning wrenches. That doesn't mean that they aren't out there but for these applications, I'm sure that one could be made. So, again, if that is a concern, then I would replace your pump assembly now before you hit the road south. Just my two cents.
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Old 08-24-2010, 11:34 PM   #3
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Default Re: FUEL PUMP

Quote:
Originally Posted by leslane
Replacing the in-tank fuel pump is no small endeavor, in that draining and dropping the tank is the biggest part of the job. The electric fuel pump located in the tank has the fuel level sensor, the electric pump and a strainer on the intake side of the pump. It all comes as a unit and can be a pretty pricey job when not done yourself. Mexican fuel has always been a problem with contaminants and you sort of "pays your dollars and takes your chances" so to speak. There is really no easy way to filter the fuel that goes into the tank as I assume you already know so that leaves the little filter on the intake side of the fuel pump to protect your fuel system. The inline filter between the tank and the engine will trap most all of anything that gets by the intake filter. I always carry a couple of these wherever I go with my rig as they are easy to change and cheap, $5 to $10 apiece. However, if the intake filter in the tank gets plugged with debris, then the only alternative is to drop the tank and change it out. If I were worried about this, I would do it well ahead of time and physically inspect the new "pop can sized" filter to ensure that it really is bigger than the original. Frankly, I have never seen one that size in all my years of turning wrenches. That doesn't mean that they aren't out there but for these applications, I'm sure that one could be made. So, again, if that is a concern, then I would replace your pump assembly now before you hit the road south. Just my two cents.
How big would the debris/contaminants in Mex-gas normally be, to cause a problem?
Could you buy a couple of large capacity gas containers, get one filled(tell them you cut lawns),
then syphon/transfer the gas from it to the other "clean" one (or into the RT's gas tank),
using some sort of portable strainer/filtration system to clean it up? Might be a bit of a pita,
but might be cheaper than replacing the tank/pump/filter.
I wonder if a Carquest or Napa or Pep Boys or some other car parts specialty store
might have something to do the gas cleanup before it goes into the tank?
Or perhaps a fuel pump manufacturer might give you some ideas.
Failing that, could you set up some sort of portable syphon/filtration system using
a 12V DC powered automotive fuel pump that could be used to filter the gas as you
fill your tank? It could have a simple cord and cigarette lighter power plug for use at
your campsite. The military must have something like this, as they must run into
situations where they need to move fuel quickly from one vehicle to another, and
filter it at the same time, I'd think.
I googled "portable gasoline 12v dc fuel pumps" and got a list off this site
http://www.become.com/portable-fuel-pumps
Just some (crazy) ideas?
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Old 08-25-2010, 06:11 AM   #4
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Default Re: FUEL PUMP

I never knew Mexico has the dirty gas problem but I never had the idea to go there either. Mike has a good idea as you can put a good filter on a pump when you pump it out of the cans. I have a hand pump that I use from a 15 gal tank that I use for my mower and it would be easy to adapt a filter for it. It is like the contractors use in back of their trucks for their equipment. You could ask at a gas station for the name of a company that services pumps and they could sell you an in line filter that gas stations use. Sure would save time over a Fram G2 filter.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:23 PM   #5
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Default Re: FUEL PUMP

thanks for the feedback and some great ideas but I cannot see myself once a day or so having the task of hand pumping gas. I will try and track down more info on the pump this fellow put in as I now know the mechanic who installed it for him. As you rightly pointed out the in tank filter is pretty small and does not take much to clog up. The pump assembly in Mexico is around $125 and the labour apparently is very cheap but not much fun being behind a tow truck several times over the winter! I also found out during my quest on the pump that RT's come with different sized gas tanks-something that I didn't know before. Mine is just over 80 litres but some are 130 litres. Would be nice if I had space to put in a larger tank
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Old 08-25-2010, 06:40 PM   #6
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Default Re: FUEL PUMP

Hmmmmm, maybe.
Larger tank = more contaminants?
It's your call, but the less someone tinkers with my van,
the less often I feel a strange hand in my wallet. Just my opinion.
BTW, I have a 100 litre tank in my '02 Chev.
They do come in all sizes it would appear!

Good luck.
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