Hot Weather: Check Hoses
I try to remind Dear Readers, seasonally, about their automobiles and avoid being stuck, or worse on the highway. Today I want to discuss “hose connections”. While peering about under the Oldsmobile hood I spied in the sunlight the gasoline rubber hose was developing cracks. Most likely the 3/8 gasoline special rubber hose had cracked from engine heat and old age. Even though the cracks were negligible I purchased 18” of new hose and two stainless steel clamps from Advance Auto Supplies.
With a flat blade screwdriver I loosened the clamps on the old hose, slipped the hose ends off the fuel pump and the incoming metal gasoline line from the gas tank.
To replace the hose was even simpler, as I put the new clamps on the new hose and was ready to slip each end and tighten. Ah…Ha! I had an idea. Since a gasoline hose was subject to engine exhaust heat why not put a heat shield on the rubber new hose?
I rummaged around a bit and found the last of my JC Whitney fiberglass cover tubing and slipped it on and taped the ends on the gasoline hose.
Now I had a protected gas line, within the scope of modern technology, safer from heat, and less likely to leak and cause a fire under the hood.
I was also having trouble with starting the car over a period of years and had even gone to the trouble of replacing the GM carburetor. I surmised that the carburetor bowl was a design fault and did not have enough gasoline capacity to provide a reservoir for starting without constant cranking. I bought an oversize gasoline filter-sort of a can with in and out spouts- placed it inline above the carburetor for an additional reservoir. Voila! It solved the problem. Oh yes, I also made sure that the gasoline line from the fuel pump to the carburetion was covered with the fiberglass safety tubing.
This is an example of safety checks for you with any automobile, lawnmower, ATV or snowmobile. My rear end garden tiller factory gas line ran through and under the hot engine block. I rerouted it. I installed the same fiberglass safety insulation as above.
With more eyeball inspection I discovered a vacuum hose from the speed control was flat and just cracked. For pennies it is simple to replace. More eyeballing is necessary to protect the family from breakdowns.
I could ramble on and on about maintenance but this time I am focusing on gasoline related problems you may fix at home outside the garage. For example: let us assume you have a leak of gasoline at the gas tank in the rear of the automobile. The neck of the tank fill tube is usually gasoline safe rubber hose, perhaps a couple inches across and may bend in all sorts of complicated twists. The hoses crack, split and become unclamped in time. You cannot drive around with a leaking fill hose. Back to Advance Auto Supply and order a replacement.
Gas tanks, modern gas tanks now place the electric fuel pump inside the gasoline tank. This implies in most cases that you have to drop the entire tank, a major headache, to replace the fuel pump. When buying a vehicle that has this feature insure that the tank has an access port cover in the flooring where you can simply open a cover and then remove the fuel pump. Check the hoses while you are doing this.
Sometimes gasoline tanks at the bottom of the tank become punctured or because the lead inside the tank is thin whereby the crummy alcohol added gasoline wears thin effecting a leak. Drip-Drip. This is unsafe and expensive. Replacement gas tanks and having a mechanic replace them is very expensive.
What I did some 5 or so years back was to frame lift the rear end of the automobile up, place jack stands (a must necessary safety precaution as jacks sometimes will slip.) I siphoned all the gasoline out of the tank. This is done with a commercial siphon hose into a gasoline approved can. The old method of placing your lips on the siphon hose and sucking hastens your demise and leads to cancer. Use an approved gasoline siphon hose from Advance Auto Supply or J.C. Whitney.com .
Once the leak hole stops dripping I wire brushed the area about 6” across and around creating a super clean surface. Next I found an old inner tube patch (Sold in automotive stores of course). Before affixing the 2” patch on the leak hole I coated the metal with high quality metal Weld- It™ epoxy stirring the two tubes small quantity at a time out onto scrap cardboard and mixing to a dark consistency. I prefer the 24-hour cure although Weld-It ™ makes a five-minute cure. Now I took a small piece of 16 gauge heavy duty metal cut to size, coated this too and affixed to the rubber patch. Lastly I took a hydraulic small jack and placed it against the patch, jacked it up for pressure and left it over night.
The patch has held for years. The key is the hydraulic jack applying pressure and using the correct epoxy metal mix product: Weld-It ™.
Off Roading is popular and so is long distance emergency bug out driving. With this concept you may need and desire to install an additional gas tank, or when you buy your new truck you will want an extra gas tank as part of your order package. If installing a new additional gas tank you want to be very careful that it fits, has strong metal holding straps bolted into the framework. The filler neck is important as above so there are no leaks. The key element in my thinking, as I have installed on my 4X4 Van is a valve and switch for either-or tanks. I prefer an electric dual fuel pump(s) both wired with alternative switching under the seat or where ever-using metal 3/8” metal tubing and limited rubber gas tank approved tubing. Insulation of course.
What is important about electric fuel pumps is where the electricity comes from what junction. Off Road Magazine recommended connecting to the brake reservoir safety switch for if you turn your vehicle over it shuts off the electric fuel pump thereby eliminating the gas fire hazard. Consult your best mechanic on this. You want a connection that in an emergency crash, or overturn, even though the engine stops, the electricity is cut off to the fuel pump.
Lastly on gasoline, I try not to use alcohol mixed gasoline. I have two sources for non-alcohol gasoline, which is mandatory for small engines as well as big engines. I do use for my stored gasoline under ground a Briggs Stratton gasoline a two year stabilizer that works well. If you just store gasoline in a can from season to season it just rots and will gum up everything. You must in today’s gasoline storage use a stabilizer.
With gas tanks on about everything it is advisable to install-in line- a simple reliable metal gas on-off valve so you can run the carburetor dry before winter storage such as lawnmowers and the like.
Happy, safe, motoring.
COPYRIGHT: Back2theLand.com, May 18, 2014. All rights reserved.