Confusion and problems with main and auxiliary fuel tanks

gary-736Dear Gary,
On my older Pace Arrow motorhome (gas), which tank is the main fuel tank – the front or the back? When the dash switch is in the “main” position, the motorhome will run for about ten minutes then die. I’ve changed the fuel pump but it still does the same thing. What now? —J.R. 

Dear J.R.,
My first question is how old, exactly, is your Pace Arrow? In the ’80s and ’90s, Fleetwood typically designated the “main” fuel tank as the one that came with the chassis. It was usually the one centered between the frame rails. The auxiliary tank is most likely situated to one side or the other, depending on the floor plan. The main tank is usually the larger of the two containers as well.

External tank fill

But your problem may not be in the fuel containers. The older Pace Arrows had an electric switchover valve that enabled you to choose which tank to operate from, hence, your dash switch. If the solenoid portion of the valve becomes faulty or the passageway blocked, you’ll be unable to switch between tanks.

Have a technician test this device. It will be located on one of the side frame rails and have either three or six fuel hoses attached to it. Many RVers have added an auxiliary 12-volt fuel pump to help get fuel from the main tank up and to the carburetor. Also, some fuel tanks had an internal pump that can also fail. I’ve always favored the outboard type that can be easily serviced. But, you do need to have fuel getting through that changeover valve before it reaches the engine.

Hope this helps!

Read more from Gary Bunzer at the RVdoctor.com. See Gary’s videos about RV repair and maintenance.

##RVT863

 

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