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Old 04-08-2012, 07:07 PM   #1
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Hydraulic Fluid Reservoir

Hydraulic Fluid Reservoir for jack and slides. Power Gear brand.
After topping off the reservoir w/ATF fluid, my jacks worked quite well and the
lights on the Power Gear panel went off as they were supposed to. But, I thought I noticed a wet spot on the ground under it. I placed a piece of cardboard on the ground and wiped the outisde of the reservoir cannister clean. I did not notice anyfluid on the cannister but did note some on the bottom at the bolt and gasket. The sides of the cannister were clean.
Next morning I noted that the piece of cardboard was wet and there was a drip on the Bolt and Gasket on the bottom. I wiped it off again and gave it a tighten with a wrench(not too much). I did notice that the gasket was very ratty looking and wet.
Wiped it all down again and put another clean piece of cardboard on the ground. I have a leak.
I am pretty sure that it is the gasket. I thought that I could remove the bolt and gasket and catch the fluid in a container (like the one we use when we change the oil).
I checked the book and it says there are 2.4 gal of AFT fluid in the complete reservoir.
I don't know if when I open it up I will completely deplete the system of fluid and will have to fill it up like you would do when you bleed a brake system.
So, my question to you guys is, do you know if I will only let out a few quarts of fluid that I can replace when I replace the gasket and bolt, or will be letting out more fluid that I can return "properly"?
Joe from Ct.
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Old 04-08-2012, 07:48 PM   #2
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I am trying to remember how many qts I used the last time I serviced my hyd system, I think that it was only 7 qts. Years ago while working on OTR trucks I got in the habit of always replacing the drain plug gaskets any time I drained a system. A new gasket is a LOT cheaper then new fluid.
As for reusing the fluid that you drain out, I myself would not. The cost of repairs on a hyd system is a lot more then some new fluid. I do kow of people that filtered new fluid and reused it but......
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Old 04-08-2012, 08:02 PM   #3
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The solenoid valves will not open if you do not turn on jacks, so you will not have a problem with air in the system. I would only reuse the fluid if I was going to clean the reservoir spotlessly and drain the fluid into a new container.
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32 years mechanic at Delta Air Lines 15 year motorhome service manager. 3 popups....2 travel trailers....5 motorhomes....loved them all.
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Old 04-08-2012, 08:41 PM   #4
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I would extend the jacks fully, which uses as much fluid as possible. Drain the res and replace gasket. Then retract jacks. Then top off with ATF.

If you'd rather replace most fluid, leave jacks retracted, then drain and replace fluid.
John & Clare Lyon
2007 43.5' Monaco Dynasty Palace III (All Electric)
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Old 04-08-2012, 09:05 PM   #5
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Several years ago when I drained our Power Gear hydraulic Jacks Reservior on a previous coach I got close to 2.5 gallons with the jacks retracted. I did not reuse the fluid.

Jim and Lynda, (Sophie, Jake, attack trained killer Shi-Tzus :-))

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Old 04-09-2012, 07:19 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the help. By the way I do not plan to reuse any fluids. But mention was made of the screen or basket. Do I have to remove the cannister to get to that? Remember that we are talking about a guy whose mechanical limits usually begin and end with the ignition key.
Joe from Ct.
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Old 04-09-2012, 09:38 AM   #7
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If the bottom of the tank is clean and the catch can is clean then there is no reason why you should not reuse the fluid unless you just want to change it. You can go to Home Depot or a paint store and get a fine mesh paint filter to strain it as a double check.
Mike Canter
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:12 AM   #8
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Hydraulic Fluid Tank Support

Originally Posted by johnsonjm209 View Post
Hydraulic Fluid Reservoir for jack and slides. Power Gear brand.

You may want to look at this thread and examine your pump/tank assembly. The RVA pump/tank assembly in my previous coach, a 2001 Diplomat, used the same design. I went ahead and made a support for the tank as the original poster in the following thread did.

Power Gear Hydraulic Fluid Tank Support

Now my 2003 Windsor has the same pump/tank design but due to the installation method it will be a more complicated support fabrication.

Dave & Cathy, 2002 Country Coach Affinity, 42', #6103, CAT C12, Sold - Retired From RV'ing, Linux Mint
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:28 AM   #9
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My hat is off to you Joe that last line of yours is priceless. At least you know your
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:31 AM   #10
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Dave, I went to that site and it is the work of a genius. I notice that the cannister is sideways (paralell to the ground). Mine is a Ford, it is vertical and is mounted that way so it's pretty solid. Thanks for sharing that info, I'm sure someone else is in their shop now making one for themselves.

I am leaving in a couple of days for a 2-3 week trip. I am going to take care of the leak problem when I come back. Meantime, I checked the reservoir and it is not as far down as I had thought. Those drops of fluid on the cardboard just magnified and looked worse than it was. I will be checking it though.

Have to say that I got a lot of help here and I don't feel apprehensive about doing it myself.
Joe from Ct.
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