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Has my fuel lost it’s oomph!


Adrian
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Hi all, due to one thing and another the car hasn’t moved for a couple of years. Fired it up last weekend and eventually woke upon the choke. Thing is it just doesn’t want to keep going. Got it to start warming up but dies when the choke is off. Was running fine before. Should I put a gallon of fresh in the tank or could it be something else.

cheers

Adrian

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Sounds just like the problem that I had last week. Started on choke, mis fired, jumped, stalled, died until warm then ran lovely. Never thought about the fuel being stale. Tank is showing half full so plenty of space for the whiz bang bit to have evaporated?? Hummm!!

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Ive not left a car for 2 yrs but general witer lay ups it starts on the button

old fuel can attach a lot of crude to the needles    i have just refurbed some off the road 30 yrs  strombergs and you  needs a gorilla to get the needles out of

the jets and they were when cleaned up corroded to the extreme  no signs of fuel in the floats  all quite clean 

but it simple the pull a piston and give the needles a clean without upsetting anything 

Pete

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Very likely to be a fuel problem. I recommissioned my old Triumph 650 bike a few months ago. It had been standing for 2 years.

The inside of the carb was full of solid deposits and the fuel in the tank smelled like varnish. I stripped and cleaned the carb, put fresh fuel in the tank and it was fine. Modern fuel doesn't last, especially when exposed to air and/or moisture.

Nigel

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I could have posted to this effect before. But I had an issue with a 2.3Kw 4 stroke Generator, not / being difficult starting after a period of non use. Speaking to the Supplier as it was still warranted. I was advised to try removing and replacing the Fuel and cleaning the Carburator?. This did in fact work and the Genset started first pull. I now drain down completely before storage and use fresh fuel. The old fuel goes in the "daily".

The explanation being that EN5%? (Ethanol) fuel degrades in storage and can/does affect starting. I am advised that because of this, the Ethanol is added to the tankers as they are filling at the refinery and not to the storage Tanks.?

It is also becoming an issue with Garden Machinery after winter storage too.

Pete

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When I changed my fuel filter the other week, I was appalled at the amount of crud in it. The inside looked like it had been varnished. Also had trouble with the lawn mower this time last year. Eventually I just filled the tank and left it to soak. It ran fine after that (the mower that is), but have that enjoyment to come yet. No grass due to mini wolf's antics on what used to be the lawn.

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Thanks for the comments as always uncle Pete came up trumps. Fortunately only a slight varnish on the needles, quick spray and wipe with carb cleaner and tentatively holds its own now. I’m guessing it’s the old fuel that is causing the lower than expected running. Video is it running at temperature, note the struggle when revs drop. 
so can adding fresh fuel clear the varnish from the system (I have a sealed Jerry can, would the fuel be fresh in that?). The tank is just below half full.

cheers Adrian 

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5 hours ago, Adrian said:

so can adding fresh fuel clear the varnish from the system (I have a sealed Jerry can, would the fuel be fresh in that?). The tank is just below half full.

I bought a Kawasaki bike, that been standing for quite a while without the carbs drained. Couldn't set it up well. After a good few hundred miles of running with fresh fuel it seemed to sort itself out?.

This was before Ethanol, though varnished carbs apparently could be an issue.

Used to be a practice of soaking carb parts/bodies in cellulose thinners for a few days?. 

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I've found Carby Clean a very effective cleaner  don't know if it affects varnish, I use a local product called "Fuel Doctor" to keep the fuel fresh and keep the tank & fuel system clean, its produced by a Co that professionally clean and protect garage storage tanks.

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10 hours ago, Colin Lindsay said:

What about 50% Redex in some fresh petrol, run that through it - it should clear the carbs nicely.

Yes, Well. Redex? theres a blast from the past, Dad, would put an eggcup full in each cylinder, leave for an hour or two, then turn it over on the handle and run the old Hilman to clear the Carbon. Huge clouds of smoke! "we" used to go on Humber Bank to do it, away from society.

Pete

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Redex! Never thought of that and I'm sure that I have a bottle somewhere. Does it go off with age? It must have been there for about 4 years. I think I got it when I recommissioned the car a couple of years ago.

By the way, what is in Redex and has it changed since my Dad put a squirt of Redex per gallon in his car, back in the 60s?

(By the way, before somebody else thinks of it, the answer to the question  "What is Redex?" is not "It is Red" (with apologies to Data in the Star Trek Next Generation episode - Relics))

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9 minutes ago, Colin Lindsay said:

Tesco sold it very cheaply a while ago, about £2 per bottle. I use it on all my older engines. Fill the tank, drop half a bottle in, and whatever it does the engine keeps on running.

It must use more fuel if you can't turn it off...... :) 

Tony.

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Hmmm. Got an old bottle on the shelf from when I had my first car. Vauxhall cavalier! Soooo as badwolf said shelf life, would 30 yrs old still be OK? If not, why on earth do I keep stuff like this, before I know it I'll be collecting bent nails in a jar to re-use like my Dad did....and never used!

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8 hours ago, Adrian said:

before I know it I'll be collecting bent nails in a jar to re-use like my Dad did....and never used!

SAD. I know. But I have a half full jar of terminally rusty 1-1/2" Panel pins. Courtesy of the Father in law, from when we cleared out when he died. Like above, I think there could be some Red-Ex living on a shelf somewhere!.

Pete

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Talk about clearing out houses when Dads old Sec had to go into an aged care home I had to clean her house out, she was like a big sister to me only about 15 years older than me and when I was growing up I think she attended more teacher parent interviews than my parents who were always away. She was with dad for about 40 years in England, Canada, Australia, England, Canada, USA, England and retired back here in Aus with the parents, she had kept her Aussie house from her first stint here. Her Australian husband was a pilot with the RAF flying Spitfires, after one sortie his plane was so badly shot up he had to ditch into the English Channel, it was a couple of hours before he was rescued, unfortunately it really affected him and he would never talk about his experiences, he was heavily decorated and as an Aussie pilot with the RAF he was fortunate enough to be selected to spend a weekend with Churchill at Chequers

Anyway whilst clearing out the garage I sourced a lot of fantastic tools her very hands on DIY husband had acquired thro his engineering life, but I found this Macintosh 10in dia tin  full of what looked like Starter Gun Caps, but in reality they were detonator caps used on the railway to warn working crews of coming trains they were put on the tracks and exploded when the train ran over them.

There would have been a couple thousand caps in the rusty old tin so I took them to the nearest police station to hand them in, they weren't keen on taking them, so I rang my close friend ( and fellow Triumph fan) who was the very senior officer in charge of the SE suburbs of Melb told him what I had then handed the phone to the unhelpful policeman over the counter you could hear the spray from 100 feet away, so I departed quickly without tin before they could think of something to book me with!

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 28/04/2021 at 09:55, Colin Lindsay said:

Tesco sold it very cheaply a while ago, about £2 per bottle. I use it on all my older engines. Fill the tank, drop half a bottle in, and whatever it does the engine keeps on running.

Co-incidentally, I visited Wilco's this afternoon and they have an offer on the old original Redex, two little bottles for £3 👍

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi Chaps

Took your advice this evening drove to shell for some 99Ron V power. Had 1/4 of a tank of old fuel left put £45 of fresh in. Had trouble from the very start getting going and just got in from 2 1/2 hrs, 1/2 mile from the garage broken down. Very lumpy, uneven running and absolutely no pulling power, could not move as on a slight upward incline which seems to make it worse so not sure about going to a car show this weekend, or indeed anywhere at the moment.

Maybe you can help with a bit more diagnostics....basically I was able to get home after waiting endlessly for the RAC who didn't arrive by which time it had cooled down and ran much better, but still as it got hotter (the temperature was normal) I could feel it starting to slip away again. Any ideas or do I admit defeat and take it to the garage?

Cheers

Adrian

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10 hours ago, Adrian said:

Hi Chaps

Took your advice this evening drove to shell for some 99Ron V power. Had 1/4 of a tank of old fuel left put £45 of fresh in. Had trouble from the very start getting going and just got in from 2 1/2 hrs, 1/2 mile from the garage broken down. Very lumpy, uneven running and absolutely no pulling power, could not move as on a slight upward incline which seems to make it worse so not sure about going to a car show this weekend, or indeed anywhere at the moment.

Maybe you can help with a bit more diagnostics....basically I was able to get home after waiting endlessly for the RAC who didn't arrive by which time it had cooled down and ran much better, but still as it got hotter (the temperature was normal) I could feel it starting to slip away again. Any ideas or do I admit defeat and take it to the garage?

Cheers

Adrian

Sounds very much like a blocked fuel filter Adrian? I had the same on a Wolseley once it took ages to sort out as someone had put two filters on it and the one i could see looked clean.

Tony.

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You clearly have a bad misfire.     That it ran better when cooled down, and your previous post (Apr 27) when you commented on "running at temperature, note the struggle when revs drop",  makes me think of an electrical fault, when hot.    Resistance usually rises with temperature.     

Check the low tension ignition wiring and connections, and the state of the dizzy, esp. the carbon contact in the cover, but the coil may be failing when it gets hot.    Triumph mounted them on the engine block, never a good position for a temp sensitive device!      Mounting it on the bulkhead needs only a longer 'king' HT lead, and will keep it cooler.

JOhn

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the ffact its the first time you have filled the tank makes me think of upsetting the debris

do check the coil is wired neg to dizzy  pos to ign feed 

there was some thought the coil was block mounted to act as a cooling heat sink  

or was it just the way the engine line tested the unit ...    needs a canley ghost 

Pete

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