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View Full Version : Unable to install Fuel Tap in 2005 gas tank, seeking advice


rcostanza
12-28-2017, 05:37 PM
Researching this forum, posting and getting advice, I thought I was ready to drop my gas tank, install a fuel tap and get my airtronix/espar heater working right before I headed out on a christmas trip with my better half. I have a 2005 Sprinter.

Dropped the tank (literally, lol, don’t forget strapping it to a board before supporting with a jack) I found the sending unit top flange (photo 1). The fuel and return lines of course had ports. The 3rd “port” had no downtube and looked like a dead end for me with no tube stub on either side. More troubling the hard plastic top flange, which looked perfect to drill into for the fuel tap, had an underside with a honeycomb, not a smooth surface. I could see no way to seal the fuel tap without a smooth top and bottom surface.

Looking to the plastic tank to install the fuel tap I realized there was no clear flat surface to drill into. No surface, that is, which allows clearance for the fuel tap under the beams and floor of the van. The fuel tap needs a 2” clearance from the top of the tank to any structure (photo 2). It seemed any flat top tank surfaces either contact the undercarriage of the van or was too far away from the sending until to allow inserting the fuel tap into the tank (my hand would have to be in the tank to insert the tap up and out any hole that i drilled).

Having read various views on tapping into the fuel return line on this forum (but not reading if anyone got this to work) I decided this was my only option at this point. See photo 3. Results? The Espar heater only works if the Sprinter engine is turned on.

For the trip I mounted a 1 gallon plastic gas can to feed the espar heater. If I have to keep this day tank perhaps I can fill it from what I teed off the fuel return line when the engine is on. That is my thoughts but I hope there is something i’m overlooking here that someone can point out?! In anycase I wanted to post so others may be more prepared for this job than I was.

One other note of this operation: In photo 3 near the heat exchanger coils you will see where I had to cut the fuel return line to drop the gas tank. I then had to install a hose clamps and a tube union to reinstall. So where the shop manual says to remove the fuel and return lines (from the flange is the implication) that is incorrect. The return line goes directly to the heat exchanger coils then to the flange. Disconnecting the return line from the flange will not free your gas tank ~ that line goes to the outlet of the heat coils which stay attached to the gas tank. Also I noted the sspar heater takes a lot more than “1 gallon in 24 hours”. But it works so well!

lindenengineering
12-28-2017, 06:57 PM
Caution Caution!!!
DO NOT Puncture the tank carcass !
That stand pipe you have there is for STEEL TRUCK TANKS
Shiver me timbers ![/B]

You need a std 3 mm stand pipe to go into the top of the fuel pump cartridge.
OR you purchase a new fuel pump that has the extra tap elbow port for the aux heater.

Just for info--MUST I repeat myself again.
If you puncture the tank it will eventually split as cracks propagate from around that hole inducting a fuel leakage,
I have had to repair a 906 Sprinter that caught fire due to this activity having nearly lost the rig and another that spewed diesel out causing a motorcyclist to fall off his bike.
That is still wending its way through a law court for civil damages.
I testified for the plaintiff that the moron that installed it didn't know what he was doing!
Training Training Training !
Fire scares the crap outta me!
Dennis

Aqua Puttana
12-28-2017, 07:54 PM
...

Having read various views on tapping into the fuel return line on this forum (but not reading if anyone got this to work) I decided this was my only option at this point. See photo 3. Results? The Espar heater only works if the Sprinter engine is turned on.

...
First. Thanks for the feedback about the return line tap.

Just a thought. How much engine operating time was involved? After the open system is re-assembled it may take some time for all of the trapped air to work itself out. Any air left in the return lines would work against the Espar fuel pump drawing fuel. Is the Espar fuel pump installed at the proper angle? That can affect the Espar fuel supply too.

Good luck.

vic

lindenengineering
12-28-2017, 08:26 PM
You want advise!~
I suggest you purchase a 3 mm stand pipe for this application from Stewart and Stevenson who are Webasto agents.
The stand pipe you cut to length and it comes with a special slip nut & sealing washer to place it into the top plate of the fuel pump cartridge by drilling a 3/8 ths hole & to seal it against possible fuel leakage.
The top part comes with a 1/4 gas slip fit fitting banjo bolt and stub barb fitting to accept the standard Espar or Webasto rubber fittings and glemo clamps.
Dennis
Factory trained Webasto installer.

Nautamaran
12-28-2017, 08:39 PM
Any air left in the return lines would work against the Espar fuel pump drawing fuel.

Hmmm...

http://diysprinter.co.uk/reference/T1N_service_scans/020FuelPumpModule.jpg

The return line dip tube appears to squirt out into the top half of the tank, so unless you're pretty full the Espar will suck air back from the tank end in pretty short order.

If you don't have the optional fuel booster fitting illustrated, then rerouting the return line via a day tank appears to be a workable option, but would need its own vent and overflow to make it play nice with the rest of the fuel system. Perhaps hang a flexible fuel bladder next to the tank? That would allow the return line to remain sealed and avoid issues with overflow and venting of the day tank, and prevent it draining back into the main tank... but for that amount of trouble and risk I'd take Dennis' advice and just install a fuel pump module with the booster nipple the stand pipe kit.

Note: fuel usage is about 7 hours per gallon (620 ml/hr) at full power.

-dave

Aqua Puttana
12-28-2017, 10:54 PM
Hmmm...

http://diysprinter.co.uk/reference/T1N_service_scans/020FuelPumpModule.jpg

The return line dip tube appears to squirt out into the top half of the tank, so unless you're pretty full the Espar will suck air back from the tank end in pretty short order.

...

-dave
Thanks. The OM647 fuel pump diagram I found showed the return going much lower. Maybe it wasn't an OEM OM647 pump afterall.

vic

Added:
A DIY hack might be to add an extension to the return hose to a length similar to the OM642 fuel pump. That said, if you're going to drop the tank anyway and mess with the return line it is better to just add a fuel down leg as Dennis recommends.

rcostanza
12-29-2017, 02:46 AM
thats a good point, but i'm pretty sure all the air was purged from the fuel lines, i drove 100 miles over a couple of days and still it would not operate for long without the engine at idle.

rcostanza
12-29-2017, 02:48 AM
great, sounds perfect, i'll order these 3 mm fittings. good thing i didn't try to get that fuel tap into the sprinter tank, dangerous. thanks! :)

rcostanza
12-29-2017, 02:55 AM
Hmmm...

http://diysprinter.co.uk/reference/T1N_service_scans/020FuelPumpModule.jpg
....but would need its own vent and overflow to make it play nice with the rest of the fuel system. Perhaps hang a flexible fuel bladder next to the tank? That would allow the return line to remain sealed and avoid issues with overflow and venting of the day tank, and prevent it draining back into the main tank...
-dave

i was thinking of isolating the day tank w a shut off valve and opening that only when i want to allow fuel from the return line into the day tank (with the engine running). if fuel was flowing i'd have the tank venting to atmosphere, then once it's topped off, close the fill valve. good points, yeah, i don't want to hack into the diesel systems.

Aqua Puttana
12-29-2017, 03:18 AM
If the plan is for a separate "day tank" then I would fill it with kerosene. Espar heaters require much less service when run on diesel.

Some Espar experts recommend a day tank to avoid getting bio-fuel in the heater. It is reported that even small percentages of bio will cause coffee colored deposits on the internal combustion parts. It is very difficult to remove.

I have posted that there is a similar fuel fill/hose cavity on both sides of the Sprinters. The opposite side (LHD vs RHD) could be used to install an external fill port to a custom sized Espar tank. Taking it one step further, the Espar could then be fueled with kerosene. Using kerosene will pretty much eliminate any need for periodic cleaning.

:2cents: vic

vic

rcostanza
10-03-2018, 05:16 PM
someone messaged me and i can't respond to that ~ i'd rather it go to this thread anyways so here is the response to your private message:

no i never got that 3 mm fitting. yes, the website was confusing, but also i wan't looking forward to dropping the gas tank out again. i'm still running a small 1 gallon tank for heater operation. it's good in that i can run 50% kerosine, sometrme 100% kerosine b/c that burns clean. the diesel burns w soot and i'd rather not rebuild that espar at any point. i know the diesel is dirty b/c whenever i burn a gallon of 100% diesel i then add kerosine it is very smoking for the first ten minutes. so i'm happy to run day tanks even though it takes up valuable inside realestate. Robert

dowdelst
10-04-2018, 12:31 AM
Thanks Robert. I was the one that messaged you. I got your response. Thanks!

For the sake of background for everyone else, I'm installing an Espar D2, and I plan on running it into my fuel line. (I still may make a wye connection with some shutoff valves so that I can run kerosene through the unit from time to time.)

I did some research on the standpipe issue and wanted to share what I found.

The Webasto standpipe that Dennis described is probably this one: https://www.heatso.com/webasto-fuel-standpipe/

Eberspacher makes a standpipe for the D2, and sells it in two different lengths, 300mm and 600mm.
https://www.heatso.com/espar-eberspacher-fuel-standpipe-600mm/
https://www.heatso.com/eberspacher-fuel-standpipe-300mm/

Both Eberspacher standpipe pages indicate that the standpipe is compatible with Webasto. Interestingly, the 600mm standpipe page says that it is required if there is no other auxiliary fuel connection.

Interestingly, the Webasto inner diameter, just as Dennis said, is 3mm. The 300mm Eberspacher diameter is listed as 2mm. I'm not sure if that's a material difference.

Question to the forum, because I don't have my gas tank measurements handy. I plan on getting the Eberspacher 600mm standpipe, because the 300mm one seems awfully short (and I don't want my heater to kick off if I have half a tank of gas!). Does that sound right?

Thanks,
Steve (driving MobyDik)

Nautamaran
10-05-2018, 07:29 AM
300mm is 12 inches. I would expect that is adequate, but you could alwys order the 600mm one and cut it down?

Luc
10-05-2018, 01:42 PM
Thanks Robert. I was the one that messaged you. I got your response. Thanks!

For the sake of background for everyone else, I'm installing an Espar D2, and I plan on running it into my fuel line. (I still may make a wye connection with some shutoff valves so that I can run kerosene through the unit from time to time.)



I too did a "Y" connection on the original fuel line that goes to the original aux engine heater. A local shop told me they had done it many times on trucks without problems.

In my case it didn't work well at all. Even after checking all connections 2-3 times, there was still an air ingress point somewhere that made my Wallas Duo works very erratically. So 1 year later, I dropped the tank and had 2 fuel pick ups installed correctly on the fuel sender unit. (1 for the Wallas, and 1 for the Plannar heater I just got).

Since then, 100% success rate on the Wallas stove. I wish I had done it right the first time.

wdavi014
10-05-2019, 03:28 PM
The Webasto standpipe that Dennis described is probably this one: https://www.heatso.com/webasto-fuel-standpipe/

Eberspacher makes a standpipe for the D2, and sells it in two different lengths, 300mm and 600mm.
https://www.heatso.com/espar-eberspacher-fuel-standpipe-600mm/
https://www.heatso.com/eberspacher-fuel-standpipe-300mm/

Both Eberspacher standpipe pages indicate that the standpipe is compatible with Webasto. Interestingly, the 600mm standpipe page says that it is required if there is no other auxiliary fuel connection.

Interestingly, the Webasto inner diameter, just as Dennis said, is 3mm. The 300mm Eberspacher diameter is listed as 2mm. I'm not sure if that's a material difference.


So I'm also in the process of installing an Espar S2 D2L (newest version of the D2) that I got from HEATSO. Having the exact same issue with the standpipe as my 2005 Sprinter doesn't have the aux tap.

119456

I ordered the 600 mm standpipe, and it's the same one in the link above, which is also the same that OP had. As Dennis pointed out, it's for a steel tank. The flange under the rubber washer is welded on, so you have to insert it through the hole from the bottom, or the hole needs to be big enough in order to slip the flange in one side at a time (it's oval shaped, not circular).

119457

I'm REALLY glad I read this post because I was pretty close to cutting a hole in the tank. I spoke with the installer at EsparParts.com and he said he thought on T1Ns, they cut a hole in the tank instead of the top flange of the fuel module. To his credit, he couldn't remember exactly because they mostly do installs on NCV3s these days.

He said I probably need to find a different standpipe and the only requirement is that it needs a 2mm ID. Therefore, I assume the 3 mm ID webasto standpipe isn't going to work?

Does anyone have a link or part number for the correct standpipe? I found this on ebay which looks like it could work.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Fuel-Tank-Sender-Stand-Pipe-Pick-Up-Clip-Kit-For-Eberspacher-Heater-VW-T5-T6/143387486577?epid=2194632826&hash=item21628f6971:g:wsUAAOSwHttdg1EK&autorefresh=true

I think it could be installed on the fuel module and inserted from above, which is absolutely critical because I don't see how you could slip the espar standpipes in from below given how the module is structured. I guess you could if the standpipe was short enough. Then you could extend it with a bit of hose and a clamp? But again, those are apparently for steel tanks...

Thanks,
Warren

Aqua Puttana
10-05-2019, 04:28 PM
...
I guess you could if the standpipe was short enough. Then you could extend it with a bit of hose and a clamp? But again, those are apparently for steel tanks...

Thanks,
Warren
I was thinking that the stand pipe you have on hand could be cut with a tubing cutter to allow it to insert from the underside. The pipe could then be extended down using a tight hose. There is no pressure on the dip tube.

As long as there is enough flat surface area, the flanged rubber should clamp against the plastic body as well as to a steel tank.

:2cents: vic

lindenengineering
10-05-2019, 07:24 PM
So I'm also in the process of installing an Espar S2 D2L (newest version of the D2) that I got from HEATSO. Having the exact same issue with the standpipe as my 2005 Sprinter doesn't have the aux tap.

119456

I ordered the 600 mm standpipe, and it's the same one in the link above, which is also the same that OP had. As Dennis pointed out, it's for a steel tank. The flange under the rubber washer is welded on, so you have to insert it through the hole from the bottom, or the hole needs to be big enough in order to slip the flange in one side at a time (it's oval shaped, not circular).

119457

I'm REALLY glad I read this post because I was pretty close to cutting a hole in the tank. I spoke with the installer at EsparParts.com and he said he thought on T1Ns, they cut a hole in the tank instead of the top flange of the fuel module. To his credit, he couldn't remember exactly because they mostly do installs on NCV3s these days.

He said I probably need to find a different standpipe and the only requirement is that it needs a 2mm ID. Therefore, I assume the 3 mm ID webasto standpipe isn't going to work?

Does anyone have a link or part number for the correct standpipe? I found this on ebay which looks like it could work.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Fuel-Tank-Sender-Stand-Pipe-Pick-Up-Clip-Kit-For-Eberspacher-Heater-VW-T5-T6/143387486577?epid=2194632826&hash=item21628f6971:g:wsUAAOSwHttdg1EK&autorefresh=true

I think it could be installed on the fuel module and inserted from above, which is absolutely critical because I don't see how you could slip the espar standpipes in from below given how the module is structured. I guess you could if the standpipe was short enough. Then you could extend it with a bit of hose and a clamp? But again, those are apparently for steel tanks...

Thanks,
Warren

The stand pipe you have is for a Class 8 truck and metal tank.
You need the stand pipe in your attachment or Webasto equivalent .
Dennis

mntnmanga
10-20-2019, 05:30 PM
Maybe this will help. The larger tap was done years ago in my less experienced days. It has to be removed to be able to pull the pump assembly out of the tank.

99sport
11-05-2019, 05:53 PM
You want advise!~
I suggest you purchase a 3 mm stand pipe for this application from Stewart and Stevenson who are Webasto agents.
The stand pipe you cut to length and it comes with a special slip nut & sealing washer to place it into the top plate of the fuel pump cartridge by drilling a 3/8 ths hole & to seal it against possible fuel leakage.
The top part comes with a 1/4 gas slip fit fitting banjo bolt and stub barb fitting to accept the standard Espar or Webasto rubber fittings and glemo clamps.
Dennis
Factory trained Webasto installer.


Dennis,

Do you happen to have the part number for the fuel pickup you recommend? I searched the Webasto catalog, and found three part numbers that look like they could work with a plastic tank (9008021A, 1300494D, 1322827A - catalog excerpt: 120815). However none of these seem to have the banjo bolt you describe so I don't think any of these is the part you reccomend.

lindenengineering
11-05-2019, 06:41 PM
The stand pipe you need is Webasto:-
5000553A
Dennis