|T O P I C R E V I E W
||Posted - Feb 04 2012 : 16:46:13
Thanksgiving Day 2010 the sending unit gasket began weeping after a fill up. Blowers were running and I was standing on the swim deck exchanging small talk with the attendant waiting for the appropriate time to pass before firing the engines up.
"I smell gas, do you smell gas ?" Then I froze.
What do I do to find the source of the gas, and for sure not do anything to cause a spark. And is there anything that will spark by itself while I am standing here thinking.
I switched the blower off, raised the engine hatch and did a quick survey. Nothing obvious. The wind was blowing pretty good so I just let the compartmemt air out own it's own.
Finally i dropped in with my flashlight and discovered gas had wetted the side of the fuel tank. Follow the trail up to the sending unit. The gasket had failed and weeped fuel onto the top of the tank.
I mopped it up as best I could and decided there was no way to remove the sending gasket without an access hole. Out of the toolbox came the cordless drill (fumes were pretty well gone by now) one hole, then the hacksaw blade with a pistol grip handle on it. And in 20 minutes I have a 6" x 6" access hole behind a seat in the cockpit.
I made a new gasket with some automotive gasket stock I had on board. Installed it and off we go, problem fixed. . . .kinda. . . .the gasket material apparently wasn't fuel proof. I have a very light show of fuel around it when I fill (which isn't often) that tank, again. I guess I'll go to my local NAPA and see what is fuel proof. What I used that day worked for awhile. . . and as I like to say "necessity is the mother. . "
Others have told me they used cardboard, and other stuff in a pinch, to get by.
|10 L A T E S T R E P L I E S (Newest First)
||Posted - Mar 02 2012 : 22:29:38
yep, good advice.
||Posted - Mar 02 2012 : 14:23:44
When putting the gasket on BE SURE to line up the screw holes on gasket with the tank top then the FSU flange (they only bolt up correctly one way). When we are working in the dark, we use a very small screw driver to align the holes before securing ti tightly back in place. We also find where screws are missing, screw holes are damaged, silicone is globbed over everything, liquid electric tape is poured on top and well that was the best they can do.
Just take your time, it is not rocket science.
||Posted - Mar 02 2012 : 00:05:26
Found myself at the local Sea Ray dealer last week. Was sure since I didn't have the gasket with me, or model # or anything except a memory of roughly what the old gasket looked like (left it at home) they wouldn't be able to help. They keep the exact replacement on peg board hooks with other merchandise on the showroom floor. Couldn't believe it was that easy. . . .bought the last one, more on order, I'll have spares from now on.
||Posted - Feb 09 2012 : 11:53:44
I would not use RTV silicone on the gauge gasket. If any of the RTV should make it's way into the tank, it can cause problems. From experience I can tell you that a little piece of cured RTV will absorb fuel, and expand in size until it becomes a large mass floating around the bottom of the tank. It will then drift over to the fuel pick up and intermittently clog it, and cause fuel feed problems.
||Posted - Feb 05 2012 : 13:18:18
I had to check this on my boat as well this summer, what I found was that someone had put some silicone on the electrical connection for the sending unit for the gas gauge, so someone must of noticed an oder at some point in the past. I am going to change the sending unit and gasket this spring, then fill up the tank and tow the boat around with the tank hatch off to make sure there are no leaks. I never did see any signs of leaking but the silicone on the electrical connection made me suspicious.
||Posted - Feb 05 2012 : 10:39:18
Quote from Sandy;
But the new ones will deteriorate eventually so I inspect annually at least now.
Could be that after a year and a half my new gasket is giving up. The surfaces were spotless when I replaced with the new gasket. And it only recently started seeping. Glad I didn't cover the inspection port, otherwise I wouldn't know it was begining to weep. Time to make another inspection port for the other tank.
I'm going to purchase several pre made gaskets since I'm not in crisis mode as I was on the Thanksgiving trip.
And as a plus, it'll provide additional intake air for the engine room. (another recent post from someone about that issue)
||Posted - Feb 04 2012 : 22:11:34
The proper gaskets are available at most marine outlets for usually under $5.00. We carry them by the hundreds and always replace them when we service the tanks.
||Posted - Feb 04 2012 : 21:58:24
Beautiful example of a very helpful post by a real aware boater. Thanks for all who take the time to read and learn!
||Posted - Feb 04 2012 : 21:37:41
When I noticed both my sender gaskets were cracked and one had a slightish leak to produce the very very elusive-subtle odor I had tracked down, I called the sender mfgrs and found the newer Buna-N (or nitrile ) gaskets are a lot more alcohol resistant than the older ones I had. The old ones would crack or mush with gasohol use. But the new ones will deteriorate eventually so I inspect annually at least now.
I don't know what material this is but it's certainly affordable: http://www.boatfix.com/shop5/store/viewItem.asp?idProduct=33697
I believe this is pretty definitely Buna-N: http://www.moellermarine.com/aftermarket/fuel_systems/fuel_senders/ Includes 5 new SS screws, but not the teeny-tiny o-rings that go on the screws to best seal the holes.
I keep spares now just in case.
||Posted - Feb 04 2012 : 19:25:51
Auto gasket material should have worked IF the metal surfaces aren't distorted. That will occur if you over tighten the bolts. Since you're going to replace it, get the right gasket. Remove the old one and check the mounting surfaces. They must be absolutely flat. Make sure you scrape off all the old gasket material. You can use some emery cloth to clean both surfaces. Re-install the new gasket and the sending unit. Tighten the screws, but do nt overtighten. That should solve your leak problem. Hy