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Gas Tank Leak Concerns


Tucsontech

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We recently had an electric fuel pump go out in a 2003 E-450 Super Duty chassis under a Jayco Greyhawk. We got a tow to a repair place close by that allowed us to sleep over in the parking  lot. The next morning we went to have breakfast and upon returning found out something which I continue to be concerned about.

The empty gas tank was on the floor with the top plate removed where the fuel pump was removed, but with 3 of the 6 studs broken off. Apparently the top of the tank collects moisture and the nuts were very rusted after 15 years. They assured me that all measures were taken to prevent this from happening. Luckily the studs  were in semi staggered locations and with a new rubber O ring, they didn't think that I would have a leaking problem. Although they did say that I might want to repair it someday. Upon asking about how I would even know if it was leaking, they said that the "check engine light" would come on if it detected any vapor leakage in the smog system long before any gasoline leaks assuming the new O-ring did it's job.

Well it's been over 2,000 miles and no check engine light yet so I assume that I am OK but I continue thinking about it. A new gas tank is around $1,000 and the physical labor is more than I care to take on. But then I think about the day when I am out in nowhere and have to take care of it. Against my better judgement I'll probably continue counting on the 3 existing bolts and the new O-ring and the thoughts that the check engine light will let me know.

Any Opinions and Advise Would Be Greatly Appreciated !!!

 

 

 

 

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It's not a problem, until it's a problem. The shop was correct, in that the CEL will come on far sooner than gas will come out, thus buying you some time to plan out the repairs while still using the vehicle. If it worries you, don't fill the tank to the top.

I have been wrong before, I'll probably be wrong again. 

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If/when it begins to leak, buy a package of epoxy gas tank sealant-perhaps 2 or 3; anyway, drop the tank enough to clean away dirt and grime, wipe dry with a rag. Follow the epoxy (tape form) and kneed until uniform in color, working quickly press the epoxy all over the ring, overlapping onto the tank about 1/2".  Insure it is pressed firmly onto the metal, don't worry about gas leaking onto or from underneath the epoxy it will seal wet or dry.
I repaired a gas tank that way on a farm tractor once, it was still sealed over 20 years later when Dad sold the tractor.

This may sound shade-tree mechanic stuff, but it worked and sure beats a $1,000 tank cost.

Edited by Ray,IN

 

2000 Winnebago Ultimate Freedom USQ40JD, ISC 8.3 Cummins 350, Spartan MM Chassis. USA IN 1SG retired;Good Sam Life member,FMCA ." And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you--ask what you can do for your country.  John F. Kennedy 20 Jan 1961

 

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13 hours ago, Tucsontech said:

The empty gas tank was on the floor with the top plate removed where the fuel pump was removed, but with 3 of the 6 studs broken off. Apparently the top of the tank collects moisture and the nuts were very rusted after 15 years.

1

I had a similar experience with our 1999, F53 chassis. The fuel pump was replaced with 2 studs next to each other twisted off. But the mechanic who did mine didn't say anything about what had happened. About a month and two states down the road, I was topping off the gas tank in preparation to park for a couple of weeks when gasoline splashed on to the ground under the tank. I checked and discovered that the fuel was coming off of the top of the tank and suspected where the leak came from.  I left it that way until we returned to TX where there was a Ford truck shop that I was familiar with and I never got the check engine light on mine. When I took it to the shop they dropped the fuel tank and quickly discovered what the problem was. The only fix was to replace the tank wich was quoted as costing about $1300 plus labor. I contacted Flinthills Ford in Manhattan KS where the repair was done and the TX shop sent them pictures and their mechanic's opinions. The result was that Flinthills Ford paid the complete cost of the repair, which was about $2300! Their service manager also told me that mechanic was let go for several other cases as well. I would go back to that shop if I ever need repairs since they stand behind the work that they do.

The TX mechanic told me that Ford has changed the fuel tanks now and the pump is no longer recessed in the tank top but protrudes slightly above the tank to keep water from standing there. You do not want to travel in wet weather until you know yours isn't leaking as it would suck water into the fuel if it is leaking when you drive in rain.

Good travelin !...............Kirk

Full-time 11+ years...... Now seasonal travelers.
Kirk & Pam's Great RV Adventure

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