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#1 2019-04-05 02:15:12

GRIFFIN
Member
From: DURHAM
Registered: 2019-03-16
Posts: 15

FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

I had a very close escape a couple of days ago. Wanting to run the fuel tank low to fill half with diesel and top up with some of Tesco's finest 70p a litre vegetable oil, I was waiting for my fuel low light to come on. I was about 5 or 6 miles from home at about half ten at night and the fuel gauge was just getting into the red when I could feel the occasional unevenness from the engine. At first I started to think that disabling my EGR valve hadn't solved my problem and that something serious was happening. However, because the fuel tank had never been so low since buying my scudo, I wondered if it was just low fuel, but my low fuel light wasn't on even though it lights up for a couple of seconds when the ignition comes on. Very puzzled I decided to drive to my local Tesco a couple of miles past where I live to try putting some fuel in, just on the bypass a mile away from Tesco the misfire grew worse until the engine eventually cut out. Bugger, I pulled into an industrial road and after trying to prime the fuel system, to no avail, I managed to turn the van round using the starter motor and eventually the engine spluttered into life so I headed a few hundred yards to a local fuel station where it cut out again. I half filled the tank, primed the pump and it roared into life, yikes wow that was close.

So my question is, why did the fuel light not come on and why did it run out of fuel when the gauge indicated just under a quarter tank or so?

My Scudo has a disabled access ramp built in and air suspension to lower the back end. I would assume that during the adaptation, a different, non original fuel tank was used to make room for the lowered floor in the back and I wonder if they have perhaps used the original fuel sender/fuel take off unit which either doesn't indicate the correct level or takes the fuel from higher up than it should in the new tank?

Has anyone had a similar experience or indeed any experience of fuel tank changes causing problems in a disabled access van? I'd like to try and solve the problem if I can but short term I'll just keep the fuel level high. I consider myself lucky this didn't happen at 2 a.m. somewhere out in the wilds big_smile

Cheers, Griff.

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#2 2019-04-06 22:07:22

kenbw2
Member
From: Bradford/Preston/Anywhere
Registered: 2017-11-26
Posts: 288

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

My 2000 van runs out one notch under a quarter! The 1999 one changes its mind each time

I've often wondered if it's the sender or the dash. I have a spare dash actually, I'll give that a try


2000 Citroen Dispatch 1.9TD XUD9 Upcoming Camper
1999 Citroen Dispatch 1.9D DW8 Camper Conversion + full time home
1996 Peugeot 806 1.9TD XUD9 Spare vehicle
1998 Citroen Synergie 1.9TD XUD9 Snapped timing belt

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#3 2019-04-07 08:08:26

cliffo
Member
Registered: 2017-08-04
Posts: 65

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

My 1998 ran out just under the quarter mark - I've never seen the fuel light!

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#4 2019-04-07 09:45:29

kenbw2
Member
From: Bradford/Preston/Anywhere
Registered: 2017-11-26
Posts: 288

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

I always make sure I have a 2 litre bottle of veg oil in the van for this reason, enough to get me to a petrol station. Or a 5 litre bottle if I'm going into the sticks


2000 Citroen Dispatch 1.9TD XUD9 Upcoming Camper
1999 Citroen Dispatch 1.9D DW8 Camper Conversion + full time home
1996 Peugeot 806 1.9TD XUD9 Spare vehicle
1998 Citroen Synergie 1.9TD XUD9 Snapped timing belt

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#5 2019-04-07 16:38:22

GRIFFIN
Member
From: DURHAM
Registered: 2019-03-16
Posts: 15

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Ah well at least I know it's a more common fault than just my van. Must be a problem somewhere, I filled mine up with 40 litres of veg oil thisavo, on top of the 40 litres of diesel from the other day and when I turned the ignition on, the gauge went down to empty and the empty warning light came on. Very strange but after a drive into town and back it started reading full again. It's almost like it was reading in reverse, except I kept checking the level after each bottle of veg oil and it was fine up till almost the full mark! Good advice though, next time I'm in Tesco I'll get a 5ltr bottle to keep in the back of the van, thanks for that, advice well worth heeding.

Cheers, Griff.

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#6 2019-04-07 20:36:18

OAT
Member
From: Borders/Dales
Registered: 2017-01-03
Posts: 263

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

The warning light coming on with ignition is only confirming that the warning light circuitry is ok.  It doesn't check the sender. 

I would expect almost any change to the shape of the tank would render the original sender useless.

As someone who regularly (and for no sensible reason), runs tanks low, I have noticed quite often that when eventually refilled, the gauge stays on empty until I hit a bump or two.  I assume the float is temporarily sticking at the empty level.

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#7 2019-04-07 23:55:48

GRIFFIN
Member
From: DURHAM
Registered: 2019-03-16
Posts: 15

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Yes Oat, as I said in the original post, the warning light comes on with the ignition and yes it only confirms that the bulb will light up when the sender tells it the tank is empty. I was confirming that the circuit for the warning light was working so that everyone would realise that the bulb was not at fault.

However as I said in todays post, the gauge was ok as I kept checking the level and it was fine until it was completely full, then the empty light came on and the gauge indicated empty but before I poured the last 5ltr bottle into the tank the gauge read correctly. So the float would have had to sink back to the bottom of the tank in order for that theory to hold water (or in this case vegetable oil) smile

Could anyone post a photo of there fuel tank in an unadapted van? I will also post a photo of mine as well to see if the disabled access van has indeed got a different tank and in what way it differs.

Cheers, Griff.

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#8 2019-04-09 07:34:01

Ricko
Member
From: SW Lancs
Registered: 2017-01-18
Posts: 185

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

The gauge tends to drop quickly towards the end, i.e. doesn't appear to be linear


2004 Citroen Dispatch 2.0 Hdi

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#9 2019-04-09 21:03:27

vaz2121
Member
From: SW. Scotland
Registered: 2015-08-31
Posts: 511

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Ricko wrote:

The gauge tends to drop quickly towards the end, i.e. doesn't appear to be linear

I agree totaly..... I show half tank but takes about 55Ltr to fill and at a quarter last time IIRC it was around the 70Ltr mark .................. So seems my guess is correct that I don't have 100Ltr tank after all ..................


I thought I'd got a pessimistic Gauge in the Binnicle change ........................

Last edited by vaz2121 (2019-04-09 21:06:19)

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#10 2019-04-09 21:20:14

kenbw2
Member
From: Bradford/Preston/Anywhere
Registered: 2017-11-26
Posts: 288

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Before mine started playing up, I found it to be fairly reliably:

1/4 = 10 litres
1/2 = 30 litres
3/4 = 50 litres
4/4 = 70 litres+


2000 Citroen Dispatch 1.9TD XUD9 Upcoming Camper
1999 Citroen Dispatch 1.9D DW8 Camper Conversion + full time home
1996 Peugeot 806 1.9TD XUD9 Spare vehicle
1998 Citroen Synergie 1.9TD XUD9 Snapped timing belt

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#11 2019-04-09 23:01:08

OAT
Member
From: Borders/Dales
Registered: 2017-01-03
Posts: 263

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Mine's like Ricko and vaz's.

I don't actualy check the numbers but find the first indicated "half" tank is far bigger than the second.  Feels good with a full tank till you think you must have a leak as it later starts emptying so fast.

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#12 2019-04-09 23:33:47

kenbw2
Member
From: Bradford/Preston/Anywhere
Registered: 2017-11-26
Posts: 288

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Yea I notice the first half goes loads slower.

I need to be aware of the litres so I know how much veg is in there for when I need to mix some diesel in


2000 Citroen Dispatch 1.9TD XUD9 Upcoming Camper
1999 Citroen Dispatch 1.9D DW8 Camper Conversion + full time home
1996 Peugeot 806 1.9TD XUD9 Spare vehicle
1998 Citroen Synergie 1.9TD XUD9 Snapped timing belt

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#13 2019-04-10 20:51:07

ruston
Member
Registered: 2017-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Every disability converted vehicle I have come across, car or van and any make, have nearly always had the fuel tank reduced but the same sender is used.  Two neighbours had converted Vauxhalls and both ran out of fuel while the guage read half full, seems to be normal and something you just have to get used to?

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#14 2019-04-11 13:24:11

GRIFFIN
Member
From: DURHAM
Registered: 2019-03-16
Posts: 15

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

The plot thickens, I put 45ltrs of diesel in mine and then topped it off with Veg oil and I managed to get 10 5ltr containers in and it wasn't at the top of the filler. So I'm thinking my tank must be 100ltrs when all the info I can find says the standard one is 80ltrs.

I can't get a good camera angle under the van, so I found aSCUDO-FUEL-TANK.jpgphoto on the web and my tank is like this one. It runs centrally lengthwise from front to back with a really long filler tube which probably holds an extra 5ltrs or more.

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#15 2019-04-12 23:54:17

GRIFFIN
Member
From: DURHAM
Registered: 2019-03-16
Posts: 15

Re: FUEL GAUGE NOT ACCURATE & FUEL WARNING LIGHT NOT COMING ON

Just to confirm, it is definitely 100ltrs. I brimmed the tank tonight with diesel and managed another 9ltres, so that is 104ltrs in total, 100 in the tank and about 4litrs in the filler between the tank and the fuel cap. At a theoretical 40mpg my reckoning would give me around 915 miles on a tank. I'm gonna equip myself with a 5ltr container of 50/50 diesel and veg oil and run it till empty. I'll report back and let everyone know how far I get.

Now I'm wondering what is the farthest anyone has managed on a full tank of fuel? Answers down below please big_smile

Cheers, Griff.

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