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Old 07-14-2011, 04:55 PM   #1
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access to top of gas tank

I have a 2003 Dolphin 5380 and am hoping to gain access to the gas line for the generator, which seems to be located at top of tank. There is no access from below, tank is between frame rails with no clearance for any type of mantenance. I replaced the 1/4 rubber gas line to within about 12 inches from entry into tank and I am certain my generator no start problem lies in the last 12 inches. I might be dreaming but am wondering if there might ba an access panel somewhere so I can at least see the remaining 12 inches or pick up tube. I have searched all over, but I sometimes don't see everything, and concluded there is no access to this area unless the 3/4 full tank is lowered. I am hopeing someone can prove me wrong and tell me there is some sort of removal panel. Thanks, Don08694@aol.com
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Old 07-14-2011, 05:35 PM   #2
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Yikes

I feel your pain my friend....But as you have already surmised there is no way to get to top of tank without dropping it down.

If you are a experienced mechanic you can do it youself, get as much fuel out as you can and use a hydraulic jack(s) to do it but this might be better for well equipped shop.

Have you tried fishing a small rod like the end of a fiberglass fishing pole through the last 12" on the odd chance that it's clogged right where the fitting enters the tank?
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Old 07-14-2011, 06:40 PM   #3
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more info- when was last time your generator ran? was it doing well?
what has you thinking it is your pickup fuel line?
give me more symptoms before you drop the tank
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:55 AM   #4
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more info- when was last time your generator ran? was it doing well?
what has you thinking it is your pickup fuel line?
give me more symptoms before you drop the tank
Ernie, I replaced the entire line up to the last 12 inches, also replaced the filters. I attached the old and new together with a clear inline filter. I prime and attempt to start generator and I can not see any flow through the filter near the tank. I disconnect the filter and attach a temporary 1/4 inch line to it and place end into gas can, primes in a few seconds and runs great forever. I disconnect again and attach to old line connected to the tank and no flow and no start. I have an almost full tank and run it constantly until this problem occured. I really don't see what else it could be. Thanks all for the replies and the suggestion about using the vent hose might be workable, not as a temp fix but possibly as a permanent one. Maybe 30-40 years ago I would not hesitate to do the tank dropping myself but as I get older it seems things don't go as well as they used to. Maybe it is a senior thing or just me but I don't have much confidence in myself as far as some of the repairs that need to be done.
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:02 AM   #5
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Don, can you blow some air into that last 12 inches? Maybe something is stuck in the end of it
ps- on a lot of the coaches I put flooring in, there is an access hole in the floor under the floor covering. I'm not familiar with your coach layout, however.
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:07 AM   #6
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I tried that also, heard bubbling and a little bit came back at me but stopped right away and yes I did get a bath. I am guessing that when priming the hose might be compressing itself and not allowing any flow out, just letting air in. I am just guessing at all of this but think I am on right track. I was just concerned that I might be doing some harm by blowing into hose, don't know if there is some sort of check valve or maybe a sock type filter at end ot pick up tube, I am not familiar with its construction.
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:12 AM   #7
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We had the same problem but only on a 94 Fleetwood Bounder. Unfortunately we had to have the tank dropped and found the line only to be pinched. Amazing because the moho was 12 years old at the time. Sure would have figured something like that would have happened earlier on. Generator ran great up until the pinch and after as well when the line was replaced. Sorry to say but short of you cutting a hole from above I doubt there is any access.
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Old 07-15-2011, 06:54 AM   #8
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Have you tryed syphoning gas from that line. If you can do that then there is nothing wrong with that line becauae that is all the gen. fuel pump does. On my 05 this line just goes to a fitting on top of the tank.
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:36 AM   #9
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My generator behaved badly until I dropped the tank and replaced the entire hose. Problems were intermittent and always seemed to be worse when I needed it the most. Now it works fine and is dependable.
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:44 AM   #10
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Don

Buy some threaded rods and bolts and replace the bolts in the hangers one at a time. Then you can lower the tank slowley by turning the bolts on the rods a little at a time. This will leave the tank pretty much in place for re-installing and you should be able to get access without disconnecting very much of what you don't need to work on.

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Old 07-15-2011, 11:27 AM   #11
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Have you tryed syphoning gas from that line. If you can do that then there is nothing wrong with that line becauae that is all the gen. fuel pump does. On my 05 this line just goes to a fitting on top of the tank.
Yes I did and got only enough out to get me wet and than it ceased. I tried it a couple of times and it will not keep flowing.
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Old 07-15-2011, 11:34 AM   #12
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Don

Buy some threaded rods and bolts and replace the bolts in the hangers one at a time. Then you can lower the tank slowley by turning the bolts on the rods a little at a time. This will leave the tank pretty much in place for re-installing and you should be able to get access without disconnecting very much of what you don't need to work on.

Dick
Another good idea, I will take a closer look and see which of the suggestions I have received will be best suited for my situation, thanks all for your ideas and comments.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:17 PM   #13
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Or- rent a pallet jack and use a pallet up under there. You can control the decent better
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:45 PM   #14
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Yes I did and got only enough out to get me wet and than it ceased. I tried it a couple of times and it will not keep flowing.
You probably already know this but....just in case....
The outlet end of the line you are trying to siphon must be lower than the inlet to create a siphon. If the outlet is not lower than the inlet then the siphon action will not continue.
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