Single fuel filter 3000 miles and it is changed again and again...

Discussion in 'Trucks [ Eighteen Wheelers ]' started by GrumpyJoe, Apr 9, 2022.

  1. GrumpyJoe

    GrumpyJoe Light Load Member

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    OK Long title but here is the scoop.
    Owner has a 2019 Peterbilt 389 with DD60 and 13spd. Partial VIN OD498489.

    I have tried a Davco and Paccar filter both were the same, plugged within 3000 miles. The truck has about 255,000 miles on it and last year had much more pull than this year. The last filter I took out was black in 2500 miles. As I drive the fuel Filter Pressure will climb to about 10PSI and then within 300 miles pressure goes well over 15PSI. Truck is real sluggish at 8PSI. I now carry 2 filters and the stuff to roadside change it.

    I fuel mostly at Loves for the clean showers. I also use Pilot, Cenex and TA. Many of the threads I read suggested the problem was Bio fuel in winter. YEP That is what I am buying between North Dakota runs and South Alabama runs it has been about the same. Lime green fuel with winter additives.

    The biggest concern is the fuel mileage has dropped in half. Changing the filters is pretty much weekly now too. While hauling 25-30,000 pound loads I can barely pull a hill anymore. Last year I would get about 5mpg loaded and 7.5-8mpg empty. Mostly now it is 3mpg maybe 5mpg empty. We just had the Upper head Service, whatever they called it at the dealer but they left a plugged fuel filter in the truck and did not check the injector timing or anything else. Just pulled valve cover gasket. They said blowby and all was within spec, but gave no numbers. Oil flows real good out the vent. Makes the polished fuel tanks real pretty with a fuzzy black coating.

    I did run the tanks down to 10 gallons and looked inside with a good flashlight. They looked real clean and I could not find any sediment on the bottom.

    If anyone has experience with these Fitzgerald rebuilds it would be great. The motor was a 1999 build. I cannot find any tag or label telling more. Maybe I am not looking in the right place. On Drivers Side mid block is an Emission Plate Identifying the motor as 1999 as in most gliders.
     
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  3. Rideandrepair

    Rideandrepair Road Train Member

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    Black fuel is often caused by burned diesel combustion gases (exhaust) leaking past 1 or more injector seats into the return fuel rail, back to the tanks. Algae is common with Bio Diesel. Usually can be seen in tanks. Sometimes it shows up as small black floaties in filter. Sometimes it can be seen floating in the tanks. Bad fuel lines falling apart should also show up as small pieces of hose. Trucks too new for bad hoses. Fitzgerald puts their own numbers on the engines valve cover. No telling what parts are inside. Try some good biocide additive. Be prepared to change fuel filters till it’s cleaned up. I prefer 2 filters. Original Detroit filters are primary 5206, and secondary 5207. I started using a FS1000 filter as a primary, when mine were plugging up often. Its a large filter and catches everything, still flows well when almost full. I’ve changed it out, and left the secondary in place while treating and cleaning the algae out. It’s actually a filter specified by Cummins. Given their injector problems it makes sense. It has a drain on the bottom. I never use it. There’s also another filter that’s the same w/o the drain. Don’t know the # on it though. Not sure how common it is. Only had 1 once, and didn’t get the #.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2022
  4. Loaderlou

    Loaderlou Medium Load Member

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    I also experienced something like that when I used a product to clean the algae in my tanks. I was changing the filters every 1500 miles. Stopped using the stuff and maybe 2-3 filter changes later everything went back to a normal 10k mile change. I would agree with RandR that the biofuel would act like that. Try a few tanks of clean diesel and see if that works.
     
  5. pavrom

    pavrom Road Train Member

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    I was able to find only 1 gas station with clean diesel living almost on the border IL/wi ...they are almost non existent around here ...cant imagine how to find one being otr
     
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  6. GrumpyJoe

    GrumpyJoe Light Load Member

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    Well I have read twice that the injectors may leak back. Mostly Cummins had coolant leak back and also like R&R said Combustion gases. I will keep extra filters in the truck. At least now I have a good kit setup for a 5 minute filter change out. Getting the power and mileage back would be nice for the owner too. Maybe I can find a good injector shop close to Joplin Mo. familiar with this issue. If anyone else has ideas it is always good to know. Thanks for all the ideas.
     
  7. bad-luck

    bad-luck Road Train Member

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    I heard that when buying a Fitzgerald glider, you had to pay extra for genuine Detroit parts, otherwise they used aftermarket parts. I don't have any first hand knowledge, so it may or may not be true. As for filters, my last fuel filter only lasted about 3k as well. I have nastc, so I primarily only fuel at a TA or Petro. I obviously got bad fuel somewhere.
    On a side note, if the fuel pump is slow stop fueling. The pumps filter is full of contaminants and some of the contaminants will get by the filter and go in your tank.
     
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  8. Rideandrepair

    Rideandrepair Road Train Member

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    Yep. Slow pumps also means low tanks. Pumping from the bottom. Sometimes it’s just vapor lock in summertime. We used to spray a water hose on the old pumps to make them flow.
     
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  9. goga

    goga Heavy Load Member

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    Go to a Walmart, buy few gallons of MMO (Marvel Mystery oil, red bottle), 1 gallons treats 300 gallons of fuel. Run it for at least a week, the longer the better. See if that helps to clean tanks, injectors and lines.

    PS: Bio diesel has bigger molecules, that's why filters plug up quicker.

    PPS: my fuel filter get changed with the oil change ~15k mi, if that matters.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2022
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  10. GYPSY65

    GYPSY65 Road Train Member

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    Are the filters actually plugging. Or just turning black?
     
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  11. GrumpyJoe

    GrumpyJoe Light Load Member

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    Well I am on filter number 6 now.ileage went up some. 4.3 loaded and 5.7 empty. It still does not pull quite the same but I am going with algae. It seems to be the most plausible since no red dye from coolant or black in tanks from exhaust gasses. The filters are expensive, but is the bosses problem. I am thinking someone bought gas from a cheap lot lizard station and it is slowly working itself clean.

    The last 3 filters came out black as night and kind of looked fuzzy. I am not sure the brands but they were white when they went in. The fuzz could also just be the element breaking down.

    I hate to see what happens over the next week while I take care of the wife. She was cured of cancer and has her last repair surgery next week. 40 Years together and she had me real worried. This surgery is just to make things comfortable, so we are hoping for a week off, eating ice cream and watching old movies. Then back to the truck and it's problems.
     
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