Thursday, December 29, 2011
Fuel Filter Indicator
One of the issues with any fuel filtration system is that you never know exactly when the filters need replacing or are restricted in some way. One method is to install a drag gauge into the system which will show just how much 'suck' there is in the vacuum side of the pump, the greater the drag, the higher the reading and thus more the fuel fuel flow and filters are clogged. It is a great system but comes at a price and complications which many recreational boat owners can do without. A simpler solution is the fuel flow service indicator from Racor. Essentially this simple but effective bit of kit is teed into the fuel line on the vacuum side of the line between the filter and the pump. As the vacuum increases a yellow disc is sucked down in the clear bowl. While the disc is in the green sector all is well but as the pump has to suck harder as the fuel filter becomes blocked it enters the red sector indicating the need for a filter change. I should add that the disc stays at the highest setting achieved even after the engine is shut down so it is possible to monitor the performance of the filters even when the engine is off and cold. Once filters have been changed the operator merely has to press the button on the top of the unit and the disc resets. The cost is a very sensible $60 and can be had from West Marine and other such suppliers.