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Old 02-15-2015, 02:23 PM   #1
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Fuel pump lift on Volvo Penta

Hi Folks,
Wondering if anyone has had to replace there engines fuel lift pump? I have a TMD30A. I just changed the secondary filter and went to bleed it the lever seemed really loose and I've had a hard time getting the fuel to really run out of the bleed screw. I don't remember it ever being that loose, if anything it was stiff and I had to turn the crankshaft to get off the cam. I need to take the filter off again and see how much fuel is actually in it but it is kind of a PITA as there isn't much clearance. My thought was that maybe the diaphragm gave out? Volvo used to offer a kit but now references a new fuel lift pump and fuel lines as well. I found an aftermarket kit that sierra makes and ordered it. Other folks I've talked to suggested adding a 12 volt pump but not sure that is really necessary.

So while I wait for the part I wondered if any of you guys have experienced this issue or have replaced or serviced your lift pump? I'd also appreciate any insights to bleeding the injectors and if you feel it is necessary after a secondary filter change. Last time I had a mechanic do it while at haulout but I was the one in the pilot house turning over the engine so I didn't really see what he was doing. I have also read there might be other bleed screws but I don't see any in my Volvo manuals. I change the Racor filter frequently but have never had to bleed it or had issues starting it up afterwards.

Thanks for any feedback.
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Old 02-16-2015, 01:29 AM   #2
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I feel your pain.

I have the TAMD40B, but also the same behavior with the lift pump and lever; never have been able to get it to pump manually.

Fortunately, have never had any problem getting the injector pump primed; just need to turn the engine over a bit more. Go figure?
My mechanic suggested there is a screen in the pump that may be compromised. Someday, maybe, I will take it off and investigate.

I tried to by a rebuild kit as well and was quoted about $400 for a new pump - just love those golden Volvo parts!

I decided to just add the electric pump after the Racors and implement it also as a fuel polisher while underway. I would highly recommend you look into that approach. I used a Walbro FRB-22, as I recall. I have been very happy with the performance.
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Old 02-16-2015, 12:03 PM   #3
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My boat has Volvo TMD40s but my lift pumps have always worked manually when changing the water separators. I took the screens off once, but they were immaculate so I have not done that again. I share your pain on Volvo havin' the worst customer service in the industry.
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Old 02-16-2015, 01:43 PM   #4
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Thanks for your replies... I guess I'm going to have to look further into a pump because the polishing aspect is very appealing to me.
Delta Jim why does your setup only polish while underway?
The after market kit I found comes with a little strainer beside the diaphragm/gasket but of course there is no detail that I can find about this pump.
It looks like you have to remove the fuel hoses and then the pump just to fit the kit because of lack of clearance. I went ahead and started my engine today and it started right up just fine. Ran her in the slip at about 800 - 1000 rpm in reverse for about 15 minutes. It just seems to be running a little rough or is it my imagination? Not sure at this point what my next step should be besides taking her out for a short cruise or calling a mechanic to fit the part and bleed the injectors. Am I being overly cautious?
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Old 02-17-2015, 02:15 PM   #5
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Captgrail, the engine might need the valves adjusted and or the injectors tested. When we purchased our Manatee in 2007 we had a mechanic go over our TMD31A Volvo, he did those two items plus he found that the injectors had been shimmed with copper spacers which was causing incorrect combustion. He also did a compression check.
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Old 02-17-2015, 02:32 PM   #6
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Captgrail,

I just happen to only use the pump when starting up or underway. I figure it pumps enough that way including what the engine pumps to filter the diesel without aerating it excessively.

I use a one-way check valve around the engine so that any excess goes straight back to the opposite tank as I am pulling from.
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Old 02-17-2015, 03:49 PM   #7
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I have TAMD40B's. the levers on my lift pumps work very well when the engine is rotated and the cam is not pushing on the pump. First I use the lift pumps to fill the on engine fuel filters until the vent on the top of the filter spews diesel. I cose the vent and then I crack open the return on the top of the injector pump and use the lift pump until fuel spews from the return that is loosened. I close that return. If the engine does not start easily I loosen half of the injector connections and crank the engine until they spew. Once tightened my engines have always started, never had to loosen the other half and spew them. Good Luck
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Old 02-17-2015, 04:00 PM   #8
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I have installed the walbro fuel pumps as Polishing pumps. They can also be used as the lift pump if a lift pump fails. They can be used for priming the system and for fuel transfer. The pumps are on 24 hour timers for polishing
Attached Files
File Type: pdf fuel.pdf (123.9 KB, 62 views)
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Old 02-17-2015, 04:10 PM   #9
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I just realized that I did not answer the OP's question. I have never had a lift pump fail but I watch ebay and buy parts when it is right. I picked up a spare pump and a kit for my stash I think I paid like $5 for the kit and $20 for the pump. the kit was new and the pump works. Pumps are still available but due to cost I would buy one ahead of needing it. My recollection is the kit had a gasket and a mesh strainer, no diaphragm, go figure.
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Old 02-20-2015, 11:39 AM   #10
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Thanks guys and thanks for the schematic obthomas. I'm waiting for the Volvo mechanic's next trip down to the marina. I'll have him change the kit and check things out. There is no "spewing" happening so I suspect the lift pump.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:16 PM   #11
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Probably needed to just rotate the motor to point where lever pump would engage. You can make life easier by installing an OB motor bulb pump in the fuel line. Go to Seaboard Marine and look under Tony's tips for OB bulb pump.
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