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Old 11 July 2020, 04:47   #1
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8 weeks, 5NM 900 road miles and and £800 later.....

What a saga...

Been unable to use boat since end of lockdown as on first run engine kept cutting back to 1000rpm as soon as opened throttle past 2900 revs. Fine at low revs - even towed another larger rib back into Brixham. No overheating, no sensor alarm / fault reading

fuel 50% brand new that day, 50% from end of last season - and engine run regularly over the winter/ spring. Never had problem with bad fuel before.

Checked what I could with MHB100 on another trip down - lines, primer bulb,low pressure filter, no visible leaks to filters etc..fuel flowing into engine .Fine at low revs. Suspected problem with high pressure pump or filter.

Local Suzuki agent (engine under warranty) comes out looks over can't find anything, requires boat taken to yard so they can look at it properly - another 300 mile round trip to take trailer down, recover boat tow to and leave at agent yard. 4 weeks before they get round to looking at it. Problem is waxed up HP pump filter - cleaned & replaced.

Total bill including first look at marina, checking all lines etc at the yard, then finally looking at HP pump filter, replacing primer bulb and water separator filter - done as separate jobs(!) 9.5 hours of labour & £800+ even though I told them I suspected the HP pump / filter when I left boat with them. Ouch.

Given I add new fuel every run what can I do to prevent this again? checking the HP filter is not a regular service task. Agent's advice was to only use high performance unleaded, not "normal" unleaded, although that is not what engine manual recommends.

Should I add a fuel stabiliser on regular basis, if so what would others recommend?
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Old 11 July 2020, 05:06   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lakelandterrier View Post
What a saga...



Been unable to use boat since end of lockdown as on first run engine kept cutting back to 1000rpm as soon as opened throttle past 2900 revs. Fine at low revs - even towed another larger rib back into Brixham. No overheating, no sensor alarm / fault reading



fuel 50% brand new that day, 50% from end of last season - and engine run regularly over the winter/ spring. Never had problem with bad fuel before.



Checked what I could with MHB100 on another trip down - lines, primer bulb,low pressure filter, no visible leaks to filters etc..fuel flowing into engine .Fine at low revs. Suspected problem with high pressure pump or filter.



Local Suzuki agent (engine under warranty) comes out looks over can't find anything, requires boat taken to yard so they can look at it properly - another 300 mile round trip to take trailer down, recover boat tow to and leave at agent yard. 4 weeks before they get round to looking at it. Problem is waxed up HP pump filter - cleaned & replaced.



Total bill including first look at marina, checking all lines etc at the yard, then finally looking at HP pump filter, replacing primer bulb and water separator filter - done as separate jobs(!) 9.5 hours of labour & £800+ even though I told them I suspected the HP pump / filter when I left boat with them. Ouch.



Given I add new fuel every run what can I do to prevent this again? checking the HP filter is not a regular service task. Agent's advice was to only use high performance unleaded, not "normal" unleaded, although that is not what engine manual recommends.



Should I add a fuel stabiliser on regular basis, if so what would others recommend?


Do you have a separate external water separator/filter?
I never rely on the in built engine filter, thatís the last line of defence imo.
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Old 11 July 2020, 05:07   #3
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Sorry to hear your tales of woe ,seems funny whenever we get these problems on here they seem to be highly weighted towards suzuki ,
personally i would consider trading up for a honda or yam
sorrry to be blunt ,but you seem to be losing alot of valuable boating time to minor failures ,earlier in the year i think it was lightboard issues ?,
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Old 11 July 2020, 05:12   #4
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Do you have a separate external water separator/filter?
I never rely on the in built engine filter, thatís the last line of defence imo.
Hi PD,
Yes, Raccor water separator / filter fitted.
Photo of HP filter attched
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Old 11 July 2020, 06:46   #5
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Is that filter easily accessible as a DIY job?
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Old 11 July 2020, 07:19   #6
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when a i had the problems with mine i had the high pressure filter changed at 150 hours it was filthy supposed to be a 1000 hour change. dont know if you read my problems but i'm using fuel set now and BP ultimate unleaded fuel the cause of mine was globules of water on the IAC valve and i do have an fuel separator total cost to find the problem about £1000 over two seasons
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Old 11 July 2020, 12:28   #7
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Is it possible that you could have bacteria in your fuel?

If it is in your tank, it could infect each new tank of fuel you added.
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Old 11 July 2020, 16:44   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lakelandterrier View Post
What a saga...

Been unable to use boat since end of lockdown as on first run engine kept cutting back to 1000rpm as soon as opened throttle past 2900 revs. Fine at low revs - even towed another larger rib back into Brixham. No overheating, no sensor alarm / fault reading

fuel 50% brand new that day, 50% from end of last season - and engine run regularly over the winter/ spring. Never had problem with bad fuel before.

Checked what I could with MHB100 on another trip down - lines, primer bulb,low pressure filter, no visible leaks to filters etc..fuel flowing into engine .Fine at low revs. Suspected problem with high pressure pump or filter.

Local Suzuki agent (engine under warranty) comes out looks over can't find anything, requires boat taken to yard so they can look at it properly - another 300 mile round trip to take trailer down, recover boat tow to and leave at agent yard. 4 weeks before they get round to looking at it. Problem is waxed up HP pump filter - cleaned & replaced.

Total bill including first look at marina, checking all lines etc at the yard, then finally looking at HP pump filter, replacing primer bulb and water separator filter - done as separate jobs(!) 9.5 hours of labour & £800+ even though I told them I suspected the HP pump / filter when I left boat with them. Ouch.

Given I add new fuel every run what can I do to prevent this again? checking the HP filter is not a regular service task. Agent's advice was to only use high performance unleaded, not "normal" unleaded, although that is not what engine manual recommends.

Should I add a fuel stabiliser on regular basis, if so what would others recommend?
Is this the 140 in your profile? I guess its possible the crud built up over time, how many running hours?. The agent seemed to go a long way round to get to the obvious thing to check first. Filter would have been my first port of call. I guess a fuel stabilizer might help but it seems to be an inherent problem with fuel injection engines that you cant run dry & the small amount of fuel left causes the waxing. Personally I dont buy the "its modern fuels" folk have been finding congealed lumps in carb float bowls for decades. So I doubt buying more expensive fuel will fix the problem. If your running a pre filter & there was little debris in there it suggests the issue didnt occur in the tank but in the small quantity left sat in the injection system. A possible solution may be to shut the engine down at the end of use on a small remote tank with a strong concentration of stabiliser added
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Old 12 July 2020, 01:26   #9
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If your running a pre filter & there was little debris in there it suggests the issue didnt occur in the tank but in the small quantity left sat in the injection system.
This is an interesting observation.

I don't know how many microns the pre filter is but if you were to change it to a 2 micron filter, I wonder if that would pick up the contamination before the on engine filter.

Do you always buy your fuel from the same place?
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Old 12 July 2020, 04:29   #10
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Thanks for the thoughts and observations all.

Yes engine is DF140 with 140 hours.

I think the muck on the filter will have built up over time.

Looking back on my records the Raccor separator filter was not changed last year - I will ensure it is specifically on the service instructions annually from now on.

GuyC, interesting thought - before last year I'd usually fill up with the boat on the trailer at a number of different filling stations - but most often local Texaco PFS as on-route to slip. Last year with putting her on the dock at the marina, all fuel - apart from start of season tank , fuel bought from local Texaco PFS and fueled from 20l plastic cans same day. Not many choices of PFS in the area that will allow you to fill more than 5l can!

May be worth adding HP filter to be checked on annual service every 150 hours c.2/3 years just to be sure even though it's officially a 1,000 hour check.

Any recommendations for stabiliser?

At least with our holiday in Croatia being cancelled this summer I've some pennies to pay the large bill

Now all I need is a decent day, the right tides, and the time to get her relaunched, tested & fully set for the rest of the summer
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Old 12 July 2020, 04:36   #11
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Im using fuel set asked the manufacturer it breaks down water as well as conditioning the fuel no complaints so far
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Old 12 July 2020, 04:40   #12
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Sorry to hear your tales of woe ,seems funny whenever we get these problems on here they seem to be highly weighted towards suzuki ,
personally i would consider trading up for a honda or yam

Do they? Or could it be either confirmation bias or that there are a larger number of Suzuki users (or that for some other reason those users have less experience fixing issues so are more vocal seeking help)...
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Old 12 July 2020, 05:13   #13
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Do they? Or could it be either confirmation bias or that there are a larger number of Suzuki users (or that for some other reason those users have less experience fixing issues so are more vocal seeking help)...
If it's dodgy fuel then every make would suffer ( but I dont buy the shit fuel story) I'd imagine its more to do with the Suzuki having an extra fine filter before the injection system which may block quicker but thats a good thing as its stopping shit getting to the injectors. I've heard of other makes having failed injectors because of water ingress, is this because filtration is inadequate? Seems to me that checking the filter should probably be an annual thing which is no biggie realy.
I'm going to check the hp filter on my recently acquired df70 at the first opportunity.
I think the ops biggest problem was with the engineer not checking the basics before diving into other stuff
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Old 12 July 2020, 05:56   #14
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OK so a much smaller 20 HP but I had this almost ruin a Cornwall holiday with a newish Suzuki Efi. Failed to a non-start condition in the first couple of days and I had to buy a used motor locally with an agreed sellback value at the end of the two week holiday to keep us on the water.

The local Suzuki dealers floundered about all over being unable to decide if it were fuel or ign eventually admitting they didn't have a diagnostic lead to fit my motor and had to order that from Suzuki. They tried part substitutions from other working motors and never actually 100% saw the issue but said it was finally resolved after they back flushed the fuel system from the injectors back through to the OB fuel line connection. They concluded it was fuel contamination in the finest filters immediately pre-injector.

This is very anecdotal but a few days later in the RNLI shed I was grumbling about the situation with the RNLI mechanic and he said they were seeing more and more of this limp-home/failing to start from fuel issues with the newer Efi engines... Suzuki in particular.

As I say only anecdotal.

But it does make you wonder if beamishken is right... the Suzuki filters are doing their job in one way but at the expense of stopping/near stopping the engines... so is the fault actually the maintenance schedule for these filters should be more frequent?
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Old 12 July 2020, 07:37   #15
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Sorry to hear your tales of woe ,seems funny whenever we get these problems on here they seem to be highly weighted towards suzuki ,
personally i would consider trading up for a honda or yam......,


Ahem, cough cough

2010 yamaha 115hp injection wont run on water
https://www.rib.net/forum/f36/2010-yamaha-115hp-injection-wont-run-on-water-76712.html
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Old 12 July 2020, 14:15   #16
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With my engine water got all the way through to the injector rail past a fuel separator, next is a course mesh filter, then the plastic filter and finally the high pressure filter it only stopped my engine running at low revs and tick over it would run all day flat out. When I spoke to ardoran marine and central marine services both said water is becoming a big problem in fuel. As a criticism I don't think mechanics go far enough to explore the engine parts because people are on budgets and saying it was only water causing the fault here's your bill for £800, in my case they looked at each end but not the middle as it were
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Old 12 July 2020, 15:18   #17
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I did a search on the adventure bike site that I frequent and water in fuel doesn't seem to get a mention so why is water in fuel becoming a problem on boats?
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Old 12 July 2020, 17:45   #18
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I did a search on the adventure bike site that I frequent and water in fuel doesn't seem to get a mention so why is water in fuel becoming a problem on boats?
Water in fuel isn't becoming an issue, it has always been an issue the nature of the beast is occasionally you will get some water in your tank. The difference is modern technology can't cope with even small amounts of contamination where previously old school two strokes would tolerate a little water which would either get burned off or settle in the carb bowl & necessitate a carb strip down.
Good filtration & frequent checking of filters should become the norm I'd imagine.
The other problem is it appears that dealer technicians haven't got to grips with checking filters first & rely on diagnostics too much. Unfortunately computer diagnostics don't have a fault code for contaminated fuel or blocked filters so seem to send techs on an often expensive wild goose chase.
Only imho of course
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Old 13 July 2020, 02:35   #19
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Water in fuel isn't becoming an issue, it has always been an issue the nature of the beast is occasionally you will get some water in your tank. The difference is modern technology can't cope with even small amounts of contamination where previously old school two strokes would tolerate a little water which would either get burned off or settle in the carb bowl & necessitate a carb strip down.
Good filtration & frequent checking of filters should become the norm I'd imagine.
The other problem is it appears that dealer technicians haven't got to grips with checking filters first & rely on diagnostics too much. Unfortunately computer diagnostics don't have a fault code for contaminated fuel or blocked filters so seem to send techs on an often expensive wild goose chase.
Only imho of course
i agree totally one thing thats been in my mind is that i always ran my 4 strokes dry force of habit from two stroke days, then i was told not to with this current engine then started having trouble is the water dropping out of the fuel whilst stood over long periods or just a coincidence, i never had a problem for 6 years with my 90 suzuki running it dry. i do know it only needs globules to give problems and the high pressure pump forces water past the high pressure filter. its frustrating when it happends for sure
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Old 13 July 2020, 05:03   #20
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i agree totally one thing thats been in my mind is that i always ran my 4 strokes dry force of habit from two stroke days, then i was told not to with this current engine then started having trouble is the water dropping out of the fuel whilst stood over long periods or just a coincidence, i never had a problem for 6 years with my 90 suzuki running it dry. i do know it only needs globules to give problems and the high pressure pump forces water past the high pressure filter. its frustrating when it happends for sure


Iím surmising here, but modern engines are sealed systems, so if the system is left full of petrol, nothing else can get in. If, however, you run the sealed system dry, then you create a vacuum in the system. Presumably the vacuum will try & equalise & suck in air/moisture, whatever from where it can. Itís not like a carbed system where the petrol would evaporate & leave gum in the carb. The petrol in a modern system is well, err ďsealedĒ🤷*♂️
Once itís been sucked up from the tank & into the system, itís no longer exposed to airborne moisture. So leaving that in the (sealed) system for long periods should actually be a good thing?
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