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Old 08-15-2012, 07:48 PM   #1
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Racor 500 problems

Just ran across a problem that I thought had been resolved years ago. Went to change the Racor elements on our new to us boat and found that the new elements were being used in the old housings without the rubber spacer thereby effectively bypassing the filter element. The PO had left a bag full of new elements, four of which had the spacers and instructions.

Really makes you wonder sometimes,

Bob
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Old 08-15-2012, 09:58 PM   #2
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Isn't that backwards? The old elements need the spacers and the new one's don't... Or am I reading your post wrong?

Either way... WOW... bummer, but glad you caught it. Now throw away all of those old elements and stock up on new. Before I realized my dirty tanks were the problem, I bought about 10 of all three micron rating off eBay. I still have about 10-15 leftover. Doubt I'll run out anytime soon.
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Old 08-15-2012, 10:07 PM   #3
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If you buy new elements to put in an old Racor 500 you need the spacer. If you buy new elements to put in a Racor 500 that was manufactured after a certain date, you don't need the spacer. At one time dealers would supply the spacer if you needed it. Now I believe Racor simply includes the spacer in every 500 element box.

Our boat has three Racor 500s. All of them were manufactured after the filter housing was changed. So we do not need to use the spacers when we buy new elements even though the spacers come in the box.
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:00 AM   #4
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Correct, the elements you buy now need the spacer if you have an old housing. Back when this first came up we were in the VI and the spacer was not included so I made one from a piece of hose. When we got back I had to order the spacer from Racor. We've been boatless for about 5 years now so I didn't realize that Racor now includes the spacer with the elements, although once it's in there, that's all you need.

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Old 08-16-2012, 09:07 AM   #5
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I'm assuming for those that don't know how old their Racors are...that after inserting the filter element if it covers the hole in the cental tube you are OK. Anyone know anything to the contrary?
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:14 AM   #6
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With the spacer in place the top of the element is almost even with the top of the housing.

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Old 08-16-2012, 11:14 AM   #7
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I read this on another forum
"If you have a Racor 500 filter unit the new elements will NOT fit your old pre-1997 Racor unit. You must get an adapter from Racor and they provide this free. You can contact them at racortech@parker.com to get the adapter. The new elements have an indentation in the bottom of them that means that the intake in this area is unfiltered and you are relying on your primary filter"

If there is any doubt check with the Racor techs. at the above Email address
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Old 08-16-2012, 11:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
I read this on another forum
"If you have a Racor 500 filter unit the new elements will NOT fit your old pre-1997 Racor unit. You must get an adapter from Racor and they provide this free. You can contact them at racortech@parker.com to get the adapter. The new elements have an indentation in the bottom of them that means that the intake in this area is unfiltered and you are relying on your primary filter"

If there is any doubt check with the Racor techs. at the above Email address
Steve W
I would swear this is backwards. (but hey... wouldn't be the first time) I have both new and old filters housings (how old I am not 100%) and BOTH work with the new filters. The old filters - the ones with the indents - need the rubber adapter. That said, my "old" filter housing my NOT be that old. Moreover, what I consider to be the OLD filters, again with the indent, are almost impossible to find at the retails stores. They have almost been totally replaced with the new un-indented ones. I was also told by a sales person that they are being discontinued from their in-store inventory.

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Old 08-16-2012, 01:07 PM   #9
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I would swear this is backwards.
Tom--- The currently made Racor 500 elements will fit in both the new and old versions of the Racor 500 filter. But if you have the old version of the filter unit, the currently made element sits too low and fuel will go through the unit unfiltered. Thus the need for the spacer which makes the currently manufactured element sit higher in the older filter unit.

As Bob said, the clue is how the filter sits in the unit. If the currently made element sits with its top nearly flush with the rim of the filter unit, it's in the right position. If you have a pre-1997 or whatever filter unit, you'll need the spacer to make the element sit flush. If you have a post-1997 filter unit, you won't need a spacer to make the current element sit flush.
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Old 08-16-2012, 08:31 PM   #10
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Got it... Then my old Racor is not as old as I thought it was. New elements are flush (within a 1/16th or 2) with the top. Cool... I be learnin' sumptin'!
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:51 PM   #11
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Or a PO installed the rubber spacer.

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Old 08-16-2012, 11:05 PM   #12
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I pulled a spacer out of there the first month I owned it to put my new element in. If you are talking about a spacer about 2" high and about 1" diameter, yea, it's gone so the new elements will fit.
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Old 08-16-2012, 11:34 PM   #13
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That doesn't sound right, Tom. The spacer is needed so the new elements will fit the old filter body. The old elements, of course, fit the old filter body just fine without a spacer.

You say your filter body is the newer style. So it shouldn't have needed a spacer at all. Only the old filter bodies need the spacer.

I don't think an old-style element will fit in the new filter body, period. I think it ends up sitting too high. But I could be wrong about this as I've never seen an old-style element. We have the current filter bodies and use the current elements, no spacer needed.

Since you say your filter had a spacer down in it, are you sure it's the newer style filter?
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Old 08-17-2012, 08:25 AM   #14
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I give up.
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Old 08-19-2012, 02:28 AM   #15
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In 2010 Racr redesigned the element for the 500 so no spacer is required, the new element can be used with any 500 assembly. An instruction sheet comes with the new element directing you to remove the spacer if one has been installed. I have the instruction sheet in my hand right now so can ne shure of this fact. If however you have some new/old filters they may require the spacer.
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