Author Topic: Fuel reserve switch  (Read 1662 times)

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Offline VWPANZER1

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Fuel reserve switch
« on: May 01, 2018, 07:56:35 PM »
       For those who never owned an early model VW Bug, the ones with no gas gauge, just floor switch for reserve, you would think simplicity equals less maintenance, not so Grasshopper.
   
      So after replacing the dual 36 Dellorto DHLA with a set of 40's, that took all winter, as I tend to work in dribs and drabs and I have no heat in the garage. cold-

     So today, I finally got a nice day and could fire it up. maybe not- the pump wasn't pumping any gas. For once I was logical and checked the gas tank first-EMPTY. Strange I'm sure gas was in there last Fall.  I didn's see any leaks so I added 5 Gallons Hi-Test with Stabill from the lawnmower can.  Turn it over, ugh! not catching, sputtering, driver side carburetor was pouring gas down the two throats.  =dfeadhorse0

    Off came the top for inspection. Ray Charles must have set the float level on this carb. (I  rebuilt the pair about 10 years ago.)  Better check the passenger side carburetor too -Great, right-on 6 mm from top.

      Okay, time to Fired it up again. Wow! Sounds strong, very strong.   bouncy- Going to let it warm up and then balance the carburetors, but ... I'm smelling gas! I peek under the front end- Oh no, Dripping gas! =whiteflag
   
    Turn the engine off and crawl under with a drop light,-  I hope, I hope, it's just a clamp that needs tightening and not the gas tank leaking.

    My luck fell somewhere in the middle, it's the reserve tank switch leaking, another victem of the dreaded ethanol added to our gas.

     I rebuilt this switch some 16 years ago (two years before we founded the SJVWC). the last one (original) lasted some 30 years and was not leaking.

   Blackie didn't have a rebuild kit or a new one switch. So it's mail order. New rebuilding kit should be here in 5-7 days.   =whiteflag




Offline lovebus (jack)

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2018, 09:47:03 PM »
II feel your pain buddy  cr\y

Offline 6T5 square

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2018, 01:48:07 PM »
Hey Joe- sorry to hear. From my own experience, I did rebuild the switch but only because the screen was shot. The other problem I had was best explained by Bob Chambers. As the car sits water condenses down to the bottom of the tank. It sits just below the reserve and can sometimes cause rust pin holes around the base of the tank where the switch screws in. We had to take it out and ( I cant remember if it was Bob or Shaun) helped me braise the holes closed.

I hope the rebuild fixes the situation

Offline VWPANZER1

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2018, 09:53:59 PM »
  I hope it's nothing more than a seal, which feels like fudge. Tomorrow I'll get it off and read the tea leaves.  *angel#

Offline VWPANZER1

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2018, 03:25:02 PM »
    Got the tank out on the bench and the switch apart. Everything looks good. I can rebuild the unit without removing it from the tank. jumping smiley

    The outside rubber seal that was gooey when wet is now brittle and it crumbled. Hoping, that is the only source of the leak.

     The Rebuilding Kit is scheduled to be here on Tuesday, May 8th.


Offline VWPANZER1

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2018, 10:13:45 PM »
   The rebuilding kit arrived on time-Made in Germany. Wow, how often do you see that?  \VW=

    Cleaning and assembly went quickly-Not really. Two hours into the night I'm trying to get the spring clip on. No good.
An internet search revealed that it is almost impossible without help, it's a two-man job. I'm sure the last one rebuild I did it alone.

  The next day I got a helper and we got the clip in under 10-minutes. Added new fuel injector hose to be safe and the tank installation and firewall hookup went without a hitch. But the Onimious question remains- WILL IT LEAK?

     Added one gallon of gas and waited. No leak so far, but I smell gas. I feel around the switch-no gas, at least not yet. I add another gallon. Still no leak, but the garage has this overwhelming smell of raw gas. Two more gallons and I'm up to a 1/4 tank and still no leaks.
 
    I put the driver tire back on and let the car down gently and  Gas starts gushing out from under the front. OH NO!  n-o

     I can't see where it's coming from. I run for a pan, jack the car up again and remove the wheel,(you cant 't see a thing with the wheel on). The gas is now dripping slower. I feel around, everything is dry. The leak isn't' coming from the switch, gas tank or hose. That's good!

    I let the car down slowly - Gas starts dripping again.

    Ha-ha, the gas that didn't leak on the ground from the old leaky seal on the switch had dripped into and was stored inside the tunnel.  4thinking6

  I don't even want to think about the fire hazard. bomb-

     

Offline Bob(Herbie)

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2018, 02:49:34 AM »
Joe,
 You can take the cover plate off from the front of the tunnel to speed up the drying process.. That is the plate for access to remove the shift tube. I had this happen many years ago when a gas leak got in to the tunnel. Be carefully not to break the gasket as it is probably dry and brittle. Good luck!  11&*

Bob

Offline VWPANZER1

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2018, 03:27:11 PM »
Thanks, Bob:

    I'm aware of the plate and may have to employ that technique.  11&*
 
   But disaster struck big time. Saturday I was dressed up and on my way to a family event, I thought I take a quick peek inside the gas tank, the garage still smelled of gas. EMPTY- 4 gallons of Sunoco Hi-test GONE! Nothing I could do about it that day and Sunday was Mothers Day. My worse fears are the switch is leaking or the ultimate bad luck scenario would be the gas line inside the tunnel has broken or rusted, even though this car has, for the most part of its life, has been garaged.

   Today, I jacked up the front end and removed the tire. It appears the leak is coming from the new rubber hose where it is clamped on the metal tube from the tunnel. Even though I slide the rubber a good 4 inches on the tube and used a clamp.

  The next step is to sand the tube smoothly, add Goop about 2 inches near the bottom and double clamp with two new clamps.

  I''m tired of smelling like gas. =whiteflag
     

Offline matt

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2018, 07:08:18 PM »
  Gas is a garage mechanic's deodorant!  Nothing to be ashamed of...

You are lucky you could rebuild your fuel valvecock, I was told, and it seemed true as I tried, the earlier ones are not rebuild-able - was money I did not want to spend... well, I never want to spend  cr\y.  Seems you have an easy fix there now.  Surprised it leaked, .. the fuel hose was not a good snug fit to begin with?

Offline VWPANZER1

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2018, 10:28:21 PM »
   The fuel injection hose is a lot harder. The clamp I used was not up to handle the extra firmness.

    I  adding gas a gallon at a time I'm up to three gallons so far, no leaks .... today. The two new clamps seem to be working.
 
   I'll check in in the morning.  4thinking6

Offline lovebus (jack)

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2018, 08:32:00 PM »
 \LIKE=

Offline Richard (Monty)

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2018, 10:20:55 PM »
   The fuel injection hose is a lot harder. The clamp I used was not up to handle the extra firmness.
I ran into the same problem with Monty. It seems, in my case anyway, that the original metal tubing is 5mm while the new fuel line is 1/4". It leaves the fit loose enough that you need significantly more clamping force from the clamps. Also, the better grade fuel hose you use, the harder it is to compress. I solved my problem with a combination of better clamps and sticking with the grade "7" hose. It's not injection rated, but with a pump putting out 3psi, it just doesn't matter. It's still Etoh rated.
Hope it stays sealed for you.

Offline matt

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2018, 12:57:01 PM »


  How many gallons are you up to now,  Joe?



Offline VWPANZER1

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #13 on: May 25, 2018, 10:47:30 AM »
  It looks like I may only have evaporation losses. So far so good. If I get some of my other major jobs done I can fire the thing up and adjust the carbs.

Offline matt

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Re: Fuel reserve switch
« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2018, 12:19:27 PM »


.. It's always, one step at a time....