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Fuel Filter Change on 2005 X-2/MCX

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  • Fuel Filter Change on 2005 X-2/MCX

    Hello,

    The motor on our boat started dying when in idle. It would only happen when the gas was below 1/2 tank. The motor would always restart after a few seconds and ran strong when under way. From my reading it appeared to be a clogged fuel filter. I am not going to get into the details of the whole fuel filter vs fuel level discussion. Do a search and you will find plenty of reading material.

    Although there are many posts about changing the fuel filter, there are no pictures. And a picture is definitely worth a thousand words. So, I took a few pictures a long the way in hopes that it will help those who are wanting to do the same. As I found, it was not entirely as one might think.

    So, I ordered a new filter, new seal, and 12 new bolts. MC does not sell just the washers. The part numbers are 155-101 (fuel filter), 155-102 (gasket-fuel), and 155-127 (bolt module). I bought, but did not need, a fuel line removal tool. I was able to remove the fuel pump enough to replace the filter without having to remove the fuel line.

    Here is a pic of the tools I needed/supplies I used.


    Here is a pic of the fuel pump "module." I had already disconnected the fuel pump wiring harness and disconnected the battery.
    Last edited by boofer; 07-04-2008, 01:11 AM.
    Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

  • #2
    Awesome, keep the pics coming!
    www.nwboatsports.com
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/NW-Bo...27792007306783

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    • #3
      The only special tool that I actually needed was a 5/16" hex socket and a in-lb torque wrench.

      I waited till we had only a small amount of gas in the tank (1/4 tank maybe). The less, the better.

      Start by disconnecting the battery negative terminal. Next, disconnect the wiring connector. Now, remove the vent tube clamp and the vent tube. Okay, now remove the 12 bolts. I found it handy to have a bucket for the discarded parts.

      Now, this was the part of the procedure that I was not prepared for. I had pictured a fuel pump with a filter on the bottom. The fuel pump is a kind of module and the "plastic" part actually slides up and down. Here is a picture.



      I pulled out this "module" and allowed it to drain for a few minutes. The filter has two clips on it and a small nipple that is attahced to a small black tube on the side not pictured. Removing the old filter was not as easy as it seems. It was on tight. I had to bend the clips and work it off. Make sure you keep the little black tube. When I started to install the new filter the little black tube would not line up with the notch it goes in. So, I compared the two filters and the nipple is in a slightly different position on the new filter. Here is a pic of how the nipples line up between the two filters.



      I did not have any choice but to install the small black tube and just leave it out of the notch. It fits tight on the nipple and I do not think it will be a problem. I bought the filter from the dealer. So, I used exactly what they would of used.

      Just as the old filter was hard to remove, the new filter was equally hard to get on. Place the module back in the tank with a new seal. Line up the holes in the seal with the holes in the tank and the module. Mine did not line up perfectly. So, I partially installed a single bolt and then worked in a circle (installing the bolts only partially). I numbered each hole from 1-12. I tightened each bolt a little at a time in a certain order (12, 3, 6, 9, 1, 4, 7, 10, 2, 5, 8, 11). I finished the tightening with a torque wrench to 45in-lbs. Replace the vent hose and clamp. Reattach the wiring harness and the negative battery cable. All done.

      I used my fake-a-lake for a quick test then followed up with a lake test. I did not add any gas since I needed it at a low fuel level. The motor only died once at the ramp when we were getting ready to put the boat on the trailer. I had gone to get the truck and the wife and kids were all in the front when it stalled. Otherwise, I did my dangest to recreate the problem without success (which was good). I credit the one stall with the boat being nose heavy with the wife and kids all in the front with less than a 1/4 tank of gas which resulted in the pump being "out of gas." The motor restarted and I had absolutely no problem getting it on the trailer (weighted towards stern with only me in the boat).

      Is it fixed? I think so. Although I did not find any obvious clogging of the old filter and I could not see anything obvious in the tank. I think that I may of been the victim of ethanol. I was not aware that ethanol attracts water. And, it apparently does some other nasty crap that can clog a filter rather easily. The gas in our area all contains 10% ethanol. I know that MC and Indmar tell us to use fuel with no ethanol, but up to 10% ethanol is acceptable. I also found a website that the Indmar manual mentions that lists "acceptable" fuel retailers. They apparently test gasoline and only retailers that "pass" their tests are listed. I have not been using fuel from any of these retailers, but I plan to in the future. I am also going to use a fuel additive (Stabil, Star Tron) on every fill up.
      Last edited by boofer; 07-04-2008, 01:03 PM.
      Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

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      • #4
        I almost forgot. Although I did not have to remove the fuel line to the motor, I was prepared to do so. For all of those unfamiliar with the Shrader valve, here is a picture of it (the black cap is already removed). It is just like a bicycle valve. You have to remove any pressure in the fuel line prior to removing the line from the fuel pump module. Depress the valve through a towel to catch the fuel. It only squirted a few drops.

        Last edited by boofer; 07-04-2008, 01:16 AM.
        Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

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        • #5
          Nice work. I will try to post my fuel pump replacement this weekend as the first part is exactly the same, and you have great pics. I had the same problem with the little black tube by the way. If you have any more issues with not starting or the motor dying i would check fuel pressure asap. My guess is that your fuel pump may be on the way out.
          sigpic
          04 197 TT LQ9 stargazer w/Z-Box
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          • #6
            rhsprostar,

            It would be great if you could snap a few pics during your fuel pump replacement. This subject has been talked about in great detail, but no one till now has bothered to take any pictures. Pictures are definitely worth a thousand words.

            I am going to see how things go with the new filter for now. I think we suffered all of the classic symptoms of a clogged fuel filter. The problem only occurred at idle with less than 1/2 tank of gas. But, since I cannot confirm beyond a reasonable doubt that it was the fuel filter, I will keep the thought of a bad fuel pump in the back of my mind.

            Any advice on an inexpensive fuel pressure tool that I can attach and leave attached while running the engine at different throttle settings? I have rebuilt cars, but I have never had to check fuel pressure before. By the way, the manual does specify that the pressure should be between 53 and 58 psi. I read several posts and guys were saying 60psi which is close but higher than needed.
            Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

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            • #7
              A regular fuel pressure guage that attaches to the schrader valve will do the job. BUT....you should always see 58 psi there as the fuel pressure regulator is on top of the module you took out. You can see from your picture the 58 marked on the top. So as long as the pump can supply enough flow the regulator keeps that constant at 58 psi.(I think)
              The pump replacement just goes further from where you left off. Only a few more steps of disassembly of the plastic pieces to access the pump. You can see the leads, fuel line and pump in your pic.
              I will try to post more this weekend but it is supposed to be nice out so it might be Monday! I want to try out my new Goode 9800sl!!
              sigpic
              04 197 TT LQ9 stargazer w/Z-Box
              Tournament PB 1/4 buoy @ 35 off
              Previous...
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              93 Prostar 205 HO
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              • #8
                I just changed the filter on my '02 after having a day out where toward the end of the day, the motor just shut down while at speed (still over a quarter tank). I managed to start and go several times to get back in. I immediately replaced the filter.

                I have been out twice since then with no issues. Wednesday, as my wife was idling away from the dock waiting for me to back the trailer down, it died and would not restart. I am now looking at the fuel pump..$475 locally..ouch!! Of course it comes with the plastic float attached. I thought I saw on here where there was a fuel pump that was a direct replacement from an auto parts store but I can't seem to find the thread.

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                • #9
                  Dang rhsprostar, you got good eyes. I cannot see that "58 psi" anywhere. I would gander that 58 psi is what the pump is suppose to supply. The 53-58 psi is Indmars requirement for the engine. I will probably check the pressure at some point. I was expecting to see more "garbage" in the filter that would of been the proverbial "smoking gun." EDIT: I see the black "58" on it.

                  '02xrider, I have read the same things about a direct off the shelf replacement and also about replacement parts for the pump, i.e. you do not have to replace the entire pump. I guess there are certain components that tend to go bad and you can replace those components if you have the smarts to do it.

                  Any suggestions on a good fuel pressure tool would be appreciated. If I buy one I would like to be able to use it with my cars (all Toyotas). And, am I correct that to monitor the pressure while underway will require that I run the tool through a crevice or something in the cushions? Or, is it okay to simply run the motor up while stationary (on the water) and not under load?
                  Last edited by boofer; 07-06-2008, 02:51 PM.
                  Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Okay, I bought a fuel pressure tester today. The pressure at key-ON-engine-OFF was 58. At idle the needle oscillated a bunch, but the mean reading was 58-59 and oscillation was from 56-60. I ran the engine up to 2000rpms and the reading was the same. But, the motor died twice; once at idle and once at about 1500rpms. Each time I was able to get it restarted after a few seconds. The gas tank is about 1/4 full or slightly less. I filled up the tank and ran the tests again. I got the same results and the motor never died. So, I think that it is just the in-tank pump design. I read a post from JimN somewhere where he added up the various heights of the filter/pump assembly which set the minimum pickup height in the tank at approximately 4 inches. That's 4 inches of unusable fuel which just so happens to be right at 1/4 of a tank.

                    The only mention of a minimum gas level in the boat from the manual pertains to the breakin period. It says to not go under 1/4 of a tank of gas until it is known that there is not any contamination in the tank. This undoubtedly implies that it is okay to run below a 1/4 tank after the breakin and there should be no negative effects.

                    I found so many posts about failed fuel pumps. There are even several posts about them (MC only) at Wakeworld. What kills me is, if this is a known DEFECT, then why hasn't MC done anything about it? Telling me that I have 8 gallons of unusable fuel in my 33 gallon tank is pathetic!!! Heck, my car only has a 11 gallon tank. If 8 gallons were unusable, I could hardly go anywhere without filling up. Granted, marine components are required to meet a slightly different set of standards is acceptable. But, I tried to find posts on other boat manufacturers forums about fuel pump problems and they are virtually nonexistent. That tells me that MC has a bad design and needs to fix it. A problem here and there is typical, but one as prevalent as this one constitutes a fix and a recall.

                    Okay, I will settle down now. One thing that I have not ruled out is water in the gas tank. Is there a simple way to test for water in the gas tank?
                    Last edited by boofer; 07-07-2008, 04:45 AM.
                    Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

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                    • #11
                      Yes, it's (...insert your own word here...) that MasterCraft has persisted with this non-functional design for at least 6 years with no apparent improvement in the failure rate (AFAICT from posts here and on WakeWorld). They have said it's a superior way to deliver fuel, and I would agree that that is true in theory, but their implementation apparently results in 1/4 tank (for me that's 15 gallons) of unusable fuel. If I violate that, it's about a $500 penalty. They have apparently acknowledged this substandard design by (according to rumor) extending the warranty on the fuel pump to two years. I can only assume that cost-accounting has led them to the conclusion that it's cheaper to accept the warranty implications and the bad press than to design and implement a crash program to come up with a new fuel-delivery system.
                      '04 MariStar 230VRS/MCX

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                      • #12
                        I don't remember ever seeing that the filter should be 4" above t he bottom, but I do remember mentioning that the filter has a 1/4" "foot" on the bottom that keeps the element above water that may accumulate in teh tank in normal situations, assuming the gas doesn't have water in it. I have said that fuel senders should be set so Empty isn't at the point where the tank is actually empty, but I wouldn't raise ht pump to that height.

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                        • #13
                          The filter does sit on little nubs on the bottom of the tank that keep it up about 1/4 inch. You can't adjust the pickup height of the filter because by design it has to sit on the bottom of the tank. There is a spring in the plastic assembly that keeps the filter on the bottom even if the tank flexes. The only adjustment would be to the plastic straw which I beleive allows unfiltered fuel to enter the pickup at a set height.
                          If you changed the height of the straw it would allow fuel in (unfiltered) at a lower level. (I think)
                          As far as the fuel pump component of the fuel module it can be replaced by itself. I left the actual Napa box at the lake again with the part number but if you cross reference it with ACDelco part EP356 you will get what you need.
                          If you look at this thread:
                          http://www.tmcowners.com/teamtalk/sh...ad.php?t=24695
                          You will get some more info including a part number from ADvance Auto parts for a pump(part number E2044 about $85)
                          I used a Napa part and have had no problems for about 2 months now.
                          I will get it tonight and post the install tomorrow.
                          Sorry for the delay but the good news is that i found the pics on my wife's computer.
                          sigpic
                          04 197 TT LQ9 stargazer w/Z-Box
                          Tournament PB 1/4 buoy @ 35 off
                          Previous...
                          96 Prostar 205 Lt1
                          93 Prostar 205 HO
                          81 Leaves and stripes(Can. edition)

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                          • #14
                            JimN, forgive me if I misquoted you. I had been reading for many hours and the brain was turning to mush. But, you added up the 1/4" and the lip of the filter. and something else (tank design?). The measurement was maybe something more like 1.5-2". The gist of what you were saying though is that the design of the pump/filter will never pick up any fuel on the bottom 1-2".

                            rhoprostar, what kind of motor do you have? If I recall you checked with enginenut and confirmed that this pump is an acceptable replacement. I cannot wait to see the pics.
                            Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

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                            • #15
                              Just a little update. I called Federal Mogul tech support.

                              The tech said that MC does not allow them to sell aftermarket components. He said that MC is unique in this aspect. FM are allowed to sell aftermarket components for cars and such (with permission from the manufacturers). He did say that it is a FM pump in the module and not another brand. One of the reasons that he did mention for replacing the entire module is the lines on the fuel pump. He said boats have burned up due to incorrect work being done. After thinking about this it really makes no sense. If something happens to a line connected to the fuel pump (breaks or tears), then all of the gas stays in the tank. I would gander that he was not entirely familiar with this module and may of been thinking about pumps that are not in the tank.

                              Now, here is the REALLY interesting thing. He said that I was the third person calling about the MC module TODAY. I really wonder about this situation. Does MC make any extra money from selling/installing this entire module as opposed to replacing just the pump? Granted, replacing the entire module is simpler than replacing the pump, but why replace the entire module if just the pump does not work? That's like replacing the whole motor on a car just because the dizzy went bad.

                              What would be really great is if someone who has done the replacement to keep the old pump and do some research. One guy posted that he was able to disassemble the pump and replace the "guts." That might be a little more than I would do, but grabbing all of the nomenclature off of the old pump would definitely be an asset. I am leary about using non-OEM parts for something like a boat. But, it appears that this ACDelco pump is working fine. I have not read anywhere that anyone who has replaced their pump with the ACDelco pump is having any trouble.

                              I know that manufacturers use other brands in their systems. I would not argue if FM was using an ACDelco pump in their modules and even renaming it to carry a FM part number. Dell does not build laptops. They buy them and stamp their name on them, as an example.
                              Common sense is the least common of all the senses.

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