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Fuel gauge on a 49 shoebox acting up

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by karambos, Apr 13, 2013.

  1. karambos
    Joined: Aug 14, 2009
    Posts: 71

    karambos
    Member

    The fuel gauge on my shoebox has been fine until recently. Then one day when I started it up, it stayed on empty for about 5 mins then when I next looked at it, it was showing the correct fuel amount. Then it was fine for about a week

    It been getting worse recently. Now, it mostly stays on empty. Occasionally it'll show the right amount of fuel for about 5 mins then show empty again.

    I've checked behind the dash and the wires are solidly connected. Also, it's a new wiring harness.

    I don't know if this is relevant but the battery gauge, which isn't wired up, went haywire about 2 days ago flipping wildly from one side to the other. It did this for about 3 mins.

    Can anyone offer suggestions as to what I should look at next? Not sure where to start...
     
  2. 226 flattie
    Joined: Jan 6, 2009
    Posts: 307

    226 flattie
    Member
    from orange,ca

    How is the fuel tank sending unit float? Mine did the same and found a pinhole in the float.

    You stated you have a wiring harness? Are you on the stock 6 volt or converted to 12 volt?

    For stock 6 volt battery gauges the power wire runs thru the loop of the gauge pick up the current. I'm not sure how you are picking up power for the gauge since you said the gauge is wired up.
     
  3. karambos
    Joined: Aug 14, 2009
    Posts: 71

    karambos
    Member

    Thanks for the reply.

    Good point. Haven't thought about that. I'll have to check it.

    12 volt.

    There's a fuse box in it now and the power comes from there.
     
  4. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,856

    Mike51Merc
    Member

    I'd suspect a damaged float, but your "battery gauge" (voltmeter or ammeter?) problems are a cause for concern.

    How does a battery gauge that's not wired up swing wildly?

    You have to give more details.
     

  5. karambos
    Joined: Aug 14, 2009
    Posts: 71

    karambos
    Member

    Thanks for the reply

    That's what I've been asking myself! I don't get it. If I look behind the dash, there are no wires going to the battery gauge. It's literally never budged from centre until the other day. I don't know what other details to give. I'm a bit out of my depth. Might be time to see an auto electrician....
     
  6. 226 flattie
    Joined: Jan 6, 2009
    Posts: 307

    226 flattie
    Member
    from orange,ca

    Can you take a picture of under dash and post it i would like to see what is going on
     
  7. paulie_boy13
    Joined: Mar 1, 2005
    Posts: 269

    paulie_boy13
    Member
    from NC

    Also each stock 6 volt gauge needs a step down reducer if your running 12 volts. Another thought is (if you changed to a 12 volt fuel sender) make sure the ohm rating for the sender is similar to the ohm rating for the gauge.

    Guy already mentioned pin holes in the float.

    Also check for bad ground on the sender.
     
  8. daddio211
    Joined: Aug 26, 2008
    Posts: 5,998

    daddio211
    Member

    Check your grounds.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     
  9. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    I suspect a loose wire. Could be either the feed or the ground wire. Sending units and floats don't heal and then get sick again.
     
  10. karambos
    Joined: Aug 14, 2009
    Posts: 71

    karambos
    Member

    I fixed it but I don't know how. I took the sending unit out and cleaned it all up. No hole in the float. Made a new cork gasket, put it back using some dialectic tune up grease on the wire at the top to ensure a good connection, took it for a spin, works fine straight away.

    I'd like to say thanks to all for suggestions/help - much appreciated!
    ~K
     
  11. 226 flattie
    Joined: Jan 6, 2009
    Posts: 307

    226 flattie
    Member
    from orange,ca

    Good to hear . But how able that battery gauge?
     
  12. karambos
    Joined: Aug 14, 2009
    Posts: 71

    karambos
    Member

    The battery gauge is back to doing what it's done for the majority of the time I've had it - precisely nothing. It's not budged. Electrics isn't my thing and I can't pretend to know why it would do that violent swinging like it did. I think I'll take it to an qualified auto-electrician and ask them about it and also to hook it up.
     
  13. daddio211
    Joined: Aug 26, 2008
    Posts: 5,998

    daddio211
    Member

    Sounds like a bad/poor connection at the sender was the culprit. Hopefully you also cleaned any corrosion off of the metal where the wires connect, otherwise the trouble will soon reappear.

    Sent from my DROID device using the TJJ mobile app
     

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