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Old 12-06-2005, 09:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

Hi there!

I have a White/Herc Turbo-Diesel generator with a separate 250 gallon fuel tank. The problem: The genset started to stall out about every 5 minutes of running. No sputtering, it just shut down.
I ran it for an hour the day before to test it, the last 60 degree day we had.

I run it about every 2 months for an hour, and when I really needed it... it crapped out. It snowed on the east coast, 32 degrees outside. The off-road fuel is only 6-7 months old, and I added the Anti-gel/Water treatment stuff to it at that time. Forgot what kind, white bottle with blue or red label, the diesel guy said it was the best stuff. 1 quart per 100 gallons, I added 3.

The fuel discharge is at the bottom side of the tank, and the return is at the top. I don't have a water separator, so I wouldn't know how to drain it off.
Someone advised me to have the fuel pick-up come from the top, and about 4" from bottom because it sounds like a "water in the fuel" problem. I'm clueless.

Do they make a floating fuel pick-up I can shove in and let it float with the level? Or does it have to be gravity fed?

Any ideas???
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-1979 F250 4x4 with 33", gas 302. All farm truck, more rust than truck, more spunk than Chevy.
-1970 Ford 3400 tractor, 3cyl diesel with a cracked loader ( no longer cracked, I learned how to weld, yeeeaahhh! )
-1983 White/Herc 6cyl deisel 65kw genset that provides 180A to the house PRN.
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Old 12-06-2005, 09:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

Jack up the outlet end of the tank such that any water, dregs, lizards, etc. will settle in the downhill side.
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Old 12-07-2005, 04:25 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

Some additives (Stanadyne,etal) will put water into suspension - tiny droplets dispersed throughout the entire tank rather than it just settling on the bottom. Once you have that going on the water in the fuel will hang up as ice in the fuel filter when the fuel temperature is below 32F.
There's no real solution other than pumping out the bad fuel, using the fuel in the summer, or heating the fuel filter so the ice doesn't block the flow. If the water is still on the bottom of the tank you can rig up a new fuel line in through the top of the tank and terminating well above the water line.
There is a chemical that you paint onto a stick, it will turn a bright neon color if there's water in your tank and the amount of water can be detrmined by how far up the stick the color is. This too only works when the water is unfrozen and not into suspension.
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Old 12-07-2005, 05:13 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

Now there is some Kentucky enginuity, Bull. I think I will do just that and keep things simple.

I did get out and buy some gel-desolver, anti-bacterial, water displacer today... added it and stirred it around. New fuel filters and tightened up the drive belt ( it was loose, almost enough to slide off of the pulley. )

See what happens in the AM


Thanks!
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-1997 F350 XLT crew cab 4x4 with big steel Gage RanchHand bumpers, Tymar intake ( 1-2 mpg improvement ) , 3" to 4" DP 4" exhaust exiting in front of rear wheel w/5" SS downtip. DIY AIC control ( AIC on Ebay now ), Premium Warn Manual hubs just installed, and Alpine 6 1/2 - 6x8 component speaker system. TW 6 pos chipset.
-1979 F250 4x4 with 33", gas 302. All farm truck, more rust than truck, more spunk than Chevy.
-1970 Ford 3400 tractor, 3cyl diesel with a cracked loader ( no longer cracked, I learned how to weld, yeeeaahhh! )
-1983 White/Herc 6cyl deisel 65kw genset that provides 180A to the house PRN.
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Old 12-08-2005, 04:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

I'm not sure where you are or how cold it is where you live but the time to use water dispersant additives is when the water hasn't turned to ice - then it passes through the filter and burns in the engine. Once the temperature is below freezing, water treatment additives cause problems that can't easily be corrected because rather than laying on the bottom of the tank the water droplets are suspended in the fuel. When fuel flows through the filter the ice droplets don't pass through the filter and the flow will be limited or stopped as the equipment runs.
I learned this lesson the hard way [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]
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Old 12-08-2005, 09:55 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

Besides adding all that stuff to the fuel why not get a water seperator and install it before the engine or just after the suction line as it leaves the tank. Get one with a clear glass/plastic so any contaminates can be seen and the problem delt with immediatly. Just a thought. There are several gen sets here in town and they all have a seperator in line before the engine. Ok, I lied. Maybe about 100 or so gen sets. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img]
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Currently also have 2012 Dodge 4X4 with a Cummins engine.

It is said if you sit by the river and watch the water flow by long enough, your enemies will pass by. This I believe to be true. It is also possible to watch your loved ones pass by as well.
Wife Candi 08/14/07 missing her always
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Old 12-09-2005, 12:24 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Diesel Help! Water in fuel/gel problem/floating pickup....

Well... all runs great now. New fuel filters and a new battery. Fishin, I think I may just do that. I was eye-ballin' those things today while looking at the block heaters. Ended getting one of those magnetic ones. I didn't feel like working. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/phoney.gif[/img]
__________________
-1997 F350 XLT crew cab 4x4 with big steel Gage RanchHand bumpers, Tymar intake ( 1-2 mpg improvement ) , 3" to 4" DP 4" exhaust exiting in front of rear wheel w/5" SS downtip. DIY AIC control ( AIC on Ebay now ), Premium Warn Manual hubs just installed, and Alpine 6 1/2 - 6x8 component speaker system. TW 6 pos chipset.
-1979 F250 4x4 with 33", gas 302. All farm truck, more rust than truck, more spunk than Chevy.
-1970 Ford 3400 tractor, 3cyl diesel with a cracked loader ( no longer cracked, I learned how to weld, yeeeaahhh! )
-1983 White/Herc 6cyl deisel 65kw genset that provides 180A to the house PRN.
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