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Old 03-27-2018, 04:49 AM   #1
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Fueling Generator from Bus Fuel Tank Questions

I've been searching and I'm not sure which route to take.

I now have my generator. It's a pulsar 5000watt diesel. I will be strapping it up under the bus. I would like to fill the tank from the fuel tank on the bus. The bus has a huge tank so I'm not worried about it causing issues with the amount of fuel it may use. I'm wondering if anyone has tapped into their fuel tank and if so, how?

I was thinking about using an external diesel fuel pump (on Amazon for about $12) with an inline filter that runs from the bus fuel tank to the cap on the generator fuel tank. I would install a switch on the fuel pump and just fill the tank and them turn off the pump when it was full. This is because I don't know if fuel pumps would work like a water pump and stop pumping when the tank is full. Would probably have to put an air valve or something on the generator fuel tank to let the air out initially and then close it...(sorry if I am rambling)

I just got the genny and haven't taken the cover off yet. I also plan on rerouting the exhaust to exit from the back of the bus by the main exhaust. Don't want to run it through the living space and out the ceiling.
Some questions and thoughts:

1. Is there a way to tap into the bus tank without having to drill a new hole (probably not)? I really don't want to empty out 3/4 of a tank of fuel, but I guess if I have the pump, I could pump it out into some containers. Not sure how I would clean the tank out if it were empty, I assume there is a drain plug on the bottom.

2. Assuming this works, how am I going to tell when the gen tank is full? Could I use one of those exterior tank strips that people use on their water tanks?

3. Would it be possible to just tap into the fuel pump in the bus tank? If that is possible, would I need an exterior pump?

4. Would it be easier to use a squeeze pump to start the flow instead of an electric pump?

Any advice, opinions, pictures, etc. would be appreciated. Thank you in advance.





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Old 03-27-2018, 05:11 AM   #2
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I see that my generator has a solenoid fuel pump. Could I use that to hook up to the gas tank directly. Run an inline filter and ball valve (in case I need to stop fuel flow for servicing) directly to the gas tank of the bus?

I would have to run a separate line for fuel pickup in the tank, but that seems the easiest if that would work. I just don't know if the gen fuel pump would be strong enough to pull from the tank?

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Old 03-27-2018, 05:42 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ninjakitty View Post
I've been searching and I'm not sure which route to take.

I now have my generator. It's a pulsar 5000watt diesel. I will be strapping it up under the bus. I would like to fill the tank from the fuel tank on the bus. The bus has a huge tank so I'm not worried about it causing issues with the amount of fuel it may use. I'm wondering if anyone has tapped into their fuel tank and if so, how?

I was thinking about using an external diesel fuel pump (on Amazon for about $12) with an inline filter that runs from the bus fuel tank to the cap on the generator fuel tank. I would install a switch on the fuel pump and just fill the tank and them turn off the pump when it was full. This is because I don't know if fuel pumps would work like a water pump and stop pumping when the tank is full. Would probably have to put an air valve or something on the generator fuel tank to let the air out initially and then close it...(sorry if I am rambling)

I just got the genny and haven't taken the cover off yet. I also plan on rerouting the exhaust to exit from the back of the bus by the main exhaust. Don't want to run it through the living space and out the ceiling.
Some questions and thoughts:

1. Is there a way to tap into the bus tank without having to drill a new hole (probably not)? I really don't want to empty out 3/4 of a tank of fuel, but I guess if I have the pump, I could pump it out into some containers. Not sure how I would clean the tank out if it were empty, I assume there is a drain plug on the bottom.

2. Assuming this works, how am I going to tell when the gen tank is full? Could I use one of those exterior tank strips that people use on their water tanks?

3. Would it be possible to just tap into the fuel pump in the bus tank? If that is possible, would I need an exterior pump?

4. Would it be easier to use a squeeze pump to start the flow instead of an electric pump?

Any advice, opinions, pictures, etc. would be appreciated. Thank you in advance.





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Bypass the genset tank...tee into fuel line leaving the tank...may need a fuel pump to get fuel to the genset...I'm not sure...if you intend on a permanent mount...you could remove the tank...be sure to install inline filter

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Old 03-27-2018, 05:46 AM   #4
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I plan on having a semi permanent mount. The holding system will be bolted together with grade 8 bolts with washers and lock nuts. I'll be going through the cross members and adding steel plate reinforcement above as this thing weighs roughly 350 lbs. Probably using 1/2 inch threaded rod (maybe larger) and steel tubing/angle to hold it in place.

I'll have to have access to the sides amd front compartment to replace air filters and donoil changes. That will be happening before I lay my interior subfloor I think, although I may just add the steel plate and some framing to the area after o install subfloor...

Was thinking of removing tank and setting those parts to the side in case I need to put it back together to make it look like it wasn't modified...

Thanks
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Old 03-27-2018, 06:46 AM   #5
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All motorhomes that I have ever seen have a second pickup in the tank that reaches down to only about the 1/4 remaining level. That way you can run the generator as much as you like and rest comfortably knowing it won't consume ALL the fuel from the tank (and leave you stuck).

The best way to accomplish that is drilling another hole in the tank. Of course, that may not be the easiest way.
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Old 03-27-2018, 08:57 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ninjakitty View Post
I see that my generator has a solenoid fuel pump. Could I use that to hook up to the gas tank directly. Run an inline filter and ball valve (in case I need to stop fuel flow for servicing) directly to the gas tank of the bus?

I would have to run a separate line for fuel pickup in the tank, but that seems the easiest if that would work. I just don't know if the gen fuel pump would be strong enough to pull from the tank?
I'd for sure run a seperate line into the tank. Make sure you leave the pickup at 1/4 or 1/3 tank so as to not strand yourself somewhere.

What's the fuel pump/system on the generator look like? Does it have pressure/volume specs on it? Is it a return or returnless system?

I would definitely eliminate the tank at the generator. Using a second pump to fill that tank just seems like a bad idea to me. There are a lot simpler methods.

If it was me, I'd plumb in a facet 40223 pump. This style pump is used on reefer units on semi trailers and is pretty reliable and it includes a built in filter. I'd extend the wiring that is already there for the pump on the genny to the new pump and run it like that. This pump doesn't draw too much power, but if it does, you can always wire in a relay to operate it.

But, you need to know the pressure/volume requirements before you pull the trigger on anything.

BTW I've heard those "silent" diesel generators aren't very reliable. I've seen them for sale on craigslist/facebook from time to time and it seems they're all made by the same manufacturer in china with just different labels/paint. Take it for what it's worth.
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Old 03-29-2018, 05:35 AM   #7
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I'll be back when I find the information on the pump/system.



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Old 03-29-2018, 11:18 AM   #8
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My 1991 blue bird handy bus 5.9 Cummins gas a 60 gallon tank. It had a plug by the vent hose and a plug by the fuel hose. It also had drain plugs at both ends. When I was moving the tank to the other side after the holes were drilled for the brackets installed a 6 inch piece of 1/2 all thread that acted like a hinge to raise and lowere the tank with a floor jack. Worked good. The picture with the hoses showed how it lowered
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Old 04-05-2018, 12:51 AM   #9
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Thank you for the advice everyone. I am returning this generator. It is just too large for me to be comfortable installing under the bus.

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Old 11-15-2018, 02:01 AM   #10
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Small generators (less than 5500 watts) can only do so much. If you overload the unit and damage it, you won't have any power at all. So be smart! Portable units are made up to almost 20k watts but they're not for people on budgets.
The bottom line is to add up the load (watts) you plan to connect and size your generator at least 25% higher. When motors like the compressor in the refrigerator start up there is a sudden draw of power higher than the normal running load and you want to compensate for that.
Small appliances will have the wattage marked on them. Lighting circuits will be less than 1200 watts each. Water heater is 4500 watts alone.
Also,you'll truly get what you pay for...unless you buy from one of those guys selling from the back of their pick-up truck (don't do that). Don't wait till the last minute or you'll be stuck with whatever is left in the stores.
Oh, and the "trick" with connecting the generator to the dryer outlet to backfeed the house? DON'T YOU DARE!! It will result in damage and/or injury...
Hope that helped a little...sorry it's so wordy
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