Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-12-2020, 07:42 PM   #1
Veteran Member
 
City: Southeast Alaska
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sea Gypsy
Vessel Model: 1979 Albin Trawler 36'
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 30
Fuel lift pump replacement help

Good evening/morning/day!

I've just finished a 12-day voyage transiting Alaska's Inside Passage and en-route had the unfortunate issue of my stbd fuel lift pump failing causing us to leak fuel for 4 days making our way from Seattle to Alaska.

The issue is this: I live on a small island and don't have the fortune of a qualified Ford Lehman mechanic to deal with this repair and fix this for me. So I fear I'm quite left to deal with this myself.

I've seen a youtube video of someone replacing the pump which is great but other than (whats the pitfall of most youtube boating channels) showing that the issue merely occurred it provided incredibly little useful or specific information on how to actually do this repair.

So what I'm wondering is this: If anyone has steps or assistance they can provide on what I need to do to replace a Ford Lehman fuel lift pump unit or what I might to do to even reprime the fuel etc. afterwards and if they wouldn't mind sharing that with me that would be amazing.

Repairing this alone in the Alaskan woods,

Kyle
__________________
Advertisement

albinalaska is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2020, 08:02 PM   #2
Guru
 
syjos's Avatar


 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sandpiper
Vessel Model: Bluewater 40 Pilothouse Trawler
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 2,149
Replacing the fuel pump on a Ford Lehman engine is very simple. Bleeding the injection pump is slightly more difficult but that's something anyone that owns a diesel boat should know how to do.

Turn off fuel valve to engine.

Place a container under the pump to catch spilled fuel.

Disconnect the fuel hoses to pump.

Unscrew the two fuel pump mounting bolts. I alternate back and forth between the two bolts to insure pump is coming out straight. (The pump has a spring loaded arm extending in to the block that could cause the pump to become crooked and possibly get stuck as it comes out. Depends on the orientation of the cam that actuate the pump. Some will turn the engine for the pump arm to be on the cams low spot before removing but it's a hassle to locate that exact spot. )

Clean the mating surface on the block.

Install the new pump with a new gasket. Screw in the two bolts alternating back and forth to insure it goes in straight. (You could stick a dowel into the hole where the pumps arm goes in, turn the engine until the dowel goes all the way in, which is the low spot on the cam. Do that before putting the pump in and you will not be working against the pump arm spring so alternating bolts would be unnecessary.)

Tighten bolts to 12 to 15 ft/lbs

Reconnect fuel lines. (Do not use Teflon tape. Use a liquid pipe sealer)

Open fuel valve.

Bleed engine filter and injection pump.

Start engine.

Bleed injectors.

Check for leaks.
__________________

syjos is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2020, 08:28 PM   #3
Guru
 
Comodave's Avatar
 
City: Au Gres, MI
Country: US
Vessel Name: Never Say Never
Vessel Model: President 41 DC
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 8,903
+1.
__________________
Boat Nut:
If you are one there is no explanation necessary.
If you arenít one, there is no explanation possible.
Comodave is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2020, 09:06 PM   #4
Guru
 
City: Boston
Country: US
Vessel Name: Adelante
Vessel Model: IG 30
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 941
New pump sells online for 70-100. You could probably find rebuild kits in UK but it probably cost the same. Biggest problem is the lack of room to work on the outboard side of the engine. The actual replacement is simple, 2 hoses and 2 bolts. Prior to putting a wrench to a bolt or hose, clean, clean, and clean again. Use acetone, isopropyl alcohol, or your favorite carb cleaner.

Once you are done with installation, fill the secondary filters. Then bleed them per the manual by pumping the little lever a million times. If the cam lever is in the wrong position nothing will happen but your thumb will get sore. . Bump the engine with the starter or bar it over an inch or so. Once the secondary's are bled, the engine should start. (Be very gentle tightening the bleed screws. The filter housing is Al and the threads strip easily)

Unless you have air locked the injection pump.

In that case, you might get lucky by cracking an injector and trying to start it. If not, then you'll have to bleed the pump. Keep top of pump operating room clean.
Start at the filters. Crack a line open, push the starter. Be patient.

Note: Every time you hit the starter, raw water pump will push water into your muffler. Without exhaust gas to push water out, your muffler will eventually fill up. It will then flow through your exhaust valves into the cylinders and hydrolock your engine. This will not be good.

If you shut the water intake off, and the engine actually starts, your dry impeller will fly into a million pieces. Replacing the outboard impeller is not my idea of fun. Simpler to take off the raw water hose leading to the exhaust elbow and dump the raw water into the bilge. Cram a wood bung into the exhaust elbow or the ER will fill with diesel fumes.

Again, you may get lucky and the engine will start after bleeding the secondaries.
(I do not use any sealant on any fuel lines. They are designed to self seal. Any contamination ending up in the injection pump will be a costly repair. If you are determined to use a sealant, at least keep it off the first several threads.)
SoWhat is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 08:03 AM   #5
Guru
 
catalinajack's Avatar
 
City: Edgewater, MD
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Catalina Jack
Vessel Model: Defever 44
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 1,670
As syjos said, replacing the pump is fairly easy but bleeding the system is not, primarily because using that bleed lever on the pump is a long and tedious affair. And, of course, one must make certain that the pump arm is positioned correctly on the cam lobe. Otherwise, one can pump all day and get no flow.

But, why bother replacing the mechanical pump? Simply install an electric pump such as a Walbro. A Walbro pump is rated for 18,000 hours. Wire it to an ignition switch source, plumb it, turn on the ignition switch, bleed the system effortedly in just a few minutes, and never again have to struggle with that ridiculous bleeding lever again.

Some folks here may disagree but, hey, just look at the what syjos and sowhat advised as to how to do the job. They were both absolutely correct on the process but what a pain! I eliminated the mechanical pump years ago.

But, I have a question for you. You mentioned that your pump leaked for four cruising days. From where was the pump leaking? I am no expert on mechanical pumps but my understanding is that, when they fail, the diaphragm fractures. When that happens, fuel is pumped into the oil sump. If you think that any fuel has been added to your lube oil, you MUST change your oil. Check your dipstick. If the oil level is above its normal point it is very likely that diesel fuel is in your lube oil. If so, continuing to run that engine will cause damage. I will let others explain better what that damage might be.

By the way, whether you choose a new mechanical pump or go with the electric pump as I would do, I would replace the pump on the other engine as well. Can its failure be not far in the future?
catalinajack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 09:05 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
mike66's Avatar
 
City: Warwick, RI
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Susan Helena
Vessel Model: Albin40
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 286
Which Lehman do you have? The 135 has nuts holding it on which are difficult to access. Don't drop them! Also I found it easier to disconnect the fuel line up at the filters rather than at the pump body. Same with installation. Getting the top hose threaded straight can be a challenge with the heat exchanger and oil cooler in the way.
mike66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 09:23 AM   #7
Veteran Member
 
City: Southeast Alaska
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sea Gypsy
Vessel Model: 1979 Albin Trawler 36'
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike66 View Post
Which Lehman do you have? The 135 has nuts holding it on which are difficult to access. Don't drop them! Also I found it easier to disconnect the fuel line up at the filters rather than at the pump body. Same with installation. Getting the top hose threaded straight can be a challenge with the heat exchanger and oil cooler in the way.
I have a pair of Lehamn 120's. 2715E's to be exact.
albinalaska is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 09:44 AM   #8
Veteran Member
 
City: Southeast Alaska
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sea Gypsy
Vessel Model: 1979 Albin Trawler 36'
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by catalinajack View Post
As syjos said, replacing the pump is fairly easy but bleeding the system is not, primarily because using that bleed lever on the pump is a long and tedious affair. And, of course, one must make certain that the pump arm is positioned correctly on the cam lobe. Otherwise, one can pump all day and get no flow.

But, why bother replacing the mechanical pump? Simply install an electric pump such as a Walbro. A Walbro pump is rated for 18,000 hours. Wire it to an ignition switch source, plumb it, turn on the ignition switch, bleed the system effortedly in just a few minutes, and never again have to struggle with that ridiculous bleeding lever again.

Some folks here may disagree but, hey, just look at the what syjos and sowhat advised as to how to do the job. They were both absolutely correct on the process but what a pain! I eliminated the mechanical pump years ago.

But, I have a question for you. You mentioned that your pump leaked for four cruising days. From where was the pump leaking? I am no expert on mechanical pumps but my understanding is that, when they fail, the diaphragm fractures. When that happens, fuel is pumped into the oil sump. If you think that any fuel has been added to your lube oil, you MUST change your oil. Check your dipstick. If the oil level is above its normal point it is very likely that diesel fuel is in your lube oil. If so, continuing to run that engine will cause damage. I will let others explain better what that damage might be.

By the way, whether you choose a new mechanical pump or go with the electric pump as I would do, I would replace the pump on the other engine as well. Can its failure be not far in the future?
I sure appreciate the advice- getting a couple of spares for sure. Regarding the leak: The pump was observed to be leaking from the bottom of the lift pump housing (presumably from a failing gasket) and dripping (at times at a rate of 6 drips per second) down the intake hose onto a saturated absorption pad and worked its way along the stringers and finally into the bilge.

The bilge is black as well which was concerning/confusing but it's yet another mystery of this boat and hard to trace its source exactly because there is an oil separator in the bilge pump line that we deduced must have been backflowing into the bilge when we were in bigger seas as the bilge thru-hull is right at the waterline. (Looking to eliminate the oil separator and put in a check valve asap) I'll have to investiage that more and I appreciate the heads up as I hadn't considered that.

During engine checks, the oil level actually appeared to decrease slightly over several days and we observed a small sheen coming from the stbd exhaust pipe while idling at the dock on several occasions. Over the 12 day voyage I think I added a third of a gallon to the stbd side. I don't have enough information to qualify that issue yet but it's certainly being monitored.
albinalaska is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 10:24 AM   #9
Veteran Member
 
City: Punta Gorda, FL
Country: United States
Vessel Name: M/V Nomad
Vessel Model: Camano Troll 31
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 36
I had a new Universal 25 installed on a boat I owned and within 25 hours the lift pump didn't work. Universal sent me a new pump which also didn't work. I thought about it for a while. Humm, I burn about 1/2 gph and the engine only works while my fuel level is above the engine (My tank was about 1/2 above and 1/2 below the level of the engine fuel intake) So the fuel was flowing freely until the level was less than 1/2 tank, the unused fuel being sent back to the tank. And the engine speed was determined by the throttle, not the excessive fuel flow. So what's the difference between this and a constant flow pump @ 1gph? So I installed a cheap automotive 1 gph fuel pump from Autozone. It worked like a champ, never had another fuel problem.

While figuring this out I installed a fuel bulb (like on an outboard) because I would take the boat out on a trial and the engine would die from fuel starvation. Normally this would require a bleeding of the fuel lines to get it running again. But with the bulb installed all I had to do is pump it a little and the system was ready to go. You should have seen me trying to get back to the dock. Jump down behind the engine and pump till the motor runs, sail till it dies, jump down and pump again. Etc., Etc., Etc.
Don1500 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 11:38 AM   #10
Guru
 
City: gulf coast
Country: pinellas
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 3,135
If that is a mechanical engine mounted pump check the lube oil in the engine to make sure the pump didn't leak into it.
bayview is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 12:27 PM   #11
Veteran Member
 
City: Southeast Alaska
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sea Gypsy
Vessel Model: 1979 Albin Trawler 36'
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by bayview View Post
If that is a mechanical engine mounted pump check the lube oil in the engine to make sure the pump didn't leak into it.
How would this present itself?
albinalaska is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 04:47 PM   #12
Guru
 
catalinajack's Avatar
 
City: Edgewater, MD
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Catalina Jack
Vessel Model: Defever 44
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 1,670
The fuel is likely leaking past the gaskets but the source of the fuel is a fractured diaphragm. That means diesel fuel is in your lube oil the extent to which can only be determined with an oil analysis which will cost $25 - $30. Just change the oil, change the pump and move on.
Quote:
Originally Posted by albinalaska View Post
I sure appreciate the advice- getting a couple of spares for sure. Regarding the leak: The pump was observed to be leaking from the bottom of the lift pump housing (presumably from a failing gasket) and dripping (at times at a rate of 6 drips per second) down the intake hose onto a saturated absorption pad and worked its way along the stringers and finally into the bilge.

The bilge is black as well which was concerning/confusing but it's yet another mystery of this boat and hard to trace its source exactly because there is an oil separator in the bilge pump line that we deduced must have been backflowing into the bilge when we were in bigger seas as the bilge thru-hull is right at the waterline. (Looking to eliminate the oil separator and put in a check valve asap) I'll have to investiage that more and I appreciate the heads up as I hadn't considered that.

During engine checks, the oil level actually appeared to decrease slightly over several days and we observed a small sheen coming from the stbd exhaust pipe while idling at the dock on several occasions. Over the 12 day voyage I think I added a third of a gallon to the stbd side. I don't have enough information to qualify that issue yet but it's certainly being monitored.
catalinajack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 06:31 PM   #13
Guru
 
Xsbank's Avatar
 
City: Pender Harbour, BC
Country: Canada
Vessel Name: Gwaii Haanas
Vessel Model: Custom Aluminum 52
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3,545
A couple of things - have you ever measured the proper amount of oil to be added with an oil change and then checked the dipsticks? The Ford engines were designed to be installed horizontally as for a combine or a generator. When they were marinized and turned into Lehmans they were tilted back as is normal in a boat but the dipsticks were not re-marked. If you fill the crankcase to the "full" mark on one of these dipsticks, you have over-filled the crankcase and the rear crank journals will splash the oil about resulting in more oil being ejected from the breather. This results in the engine seeking its own oil level; topping the oil to the full mark results in the oil you just put in being ejected and wasted.

If you monitor the oil level drop, you will see that it stops declining after a while and will not drop further.

A sheen in the water is fuel, most Lehmans mark their territory. You can reduce this somewhat by servicing your injectors but don't be surprised if the engine still does it.

Buy a lift pump from a farm supply store, its a cheap Ford part. DON'T buy from a marine store. Actually, buy 2 and keep the one that still works as a spare.

Don't forget to change your injector pump oil at every 50 hours unless you have a really good one, which you can then stretch to up to 100 hours. Measure that oil too, don't take out the level plug.

As for fuel in the oil, put a few drops of oil on a shop towel and observe. If there is fuel in the oil it will leave a larger ring around the oil stain.
__________________
Don't believe everything that you think.
Xsbank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2020, 06:44 PM   #14
Guru
 
Xsbank's Avatar
 
City: Pender Harbour, BC
Country: Canada
Vessel Name: Gwaii Haanas
Vessel Model: Custom Aluminum 52
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 3,545
Rereading your post, make sure the fuel is not leaking out of a fitting and not the pump itself.

Also, when you install the new pump you may have to bump the engine a bit so that the cam is not pushing on the pump while you seat and torque it.

90 percent of the oil leaks on a Lehman are from the lift pump gaskets; with the vibration it gets everywhere and is very hard to find. Its probably the pump. Also, check that the gaskets that seal the injector pipes on the outside of the block are tight. If you find fuel in the oil, pop off the valve cover and ensure that the return line from the injectors are tight and not leaking and if you're really on a roll, check and set the valves WYIT.
__________________
Don't believe everything that you think.
Xsbank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2020, 06:35 AM   #15
FF
Guru
 
FF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 20,856
"Actually, buy 2 and keep the one that still works as a spare."

Great advice for ANY part you need to replace .

A known operating part solves many trouble shooting questions.
FF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2020, 05:25 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
City: Waitamata
Country: Aotearoa
Vessel Name: Karinya
Vessel Model: Pelin
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 112
Lots of good advice above. A couple of things that may help, it sounds like you have identified the leak as being the diaphragm, but if youíre lucky it just may be that the the centre bolt holding the screen cover or that the tube nut attaching the fuel line require nipping up especially if things are a tad grubby and access isnít too flash. (Iím never that lucky). Before you remove the pump try actuating the lever on the side of the pump, then bump the motor over on the starter motor and actuate the pump lever again. If you do this a few times it will become obvious when the pump is free of the cam. (The pump lever will stroke further) This is the best place to remove the pump and bleed the system after replacement. As others have noted, the risk of diluted engine oil is probably your biggest risk, oh and you already know this but ensure you are satisfied with this engine before delving into the other one.
BeeJay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2020, 08:01 AM   #17
Guru
 
City: gulf coast
Country: pinellas
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 3,135
Quote:
Originally Posted by albinalaska View Post
How would this present itself?
Oil level rising.
bayview is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2020, 08:22 AM   #18
Guru
 
High Wire's Avatar
 
City: Cape May, NJ and Englewood, FL
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Irish Lady
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 3,408
A fuel leak that big could be captured in a small container then dumped back in to the fuel tank.
__________________
Archie
Irish Lady
1984 Monk 36 Hull #46
Currently in New Jersey.
High Wire is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2020, 08:51 PM   #19
Veteran Member
 
Caballero II's Avatar
 
City: Santa Barbara Harbor
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Caballero II
Vessel Model: Grand Banks Classic 36
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 43
Wyit??
Caballero II is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2020, 10:02 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
Solly's Avatar
 
City: Solomons MD.
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sun Runner
Vessel Model: 1985 Mainship 34 Trawler MK III
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 273
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caballero II View Post
Wyit??
While your in there.
__________________

Solly is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:07 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012
×