Fuel leak top of tank, '06 canyon - anyone had this? - Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon
 
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2016, 04:26 PM Thread Starter
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Fuel leak top of tank, '06 canyon - anyone had this?

Hi,

I've got an '06 with 240K on it. I've had it since new and it's used as my 2nd vehicle - last couple months I've had it sitting while I worked on some other projects but need it bad now.

It has a fuel leak on the top of the tank that only happens when it's running and it leaks a lot. I'm figuring hose or the fitting on the fuel pump sending unit has snapped off, or some plastic part has broken etc etc..

Anyone run into this? This truck does not need to be fixed nicely, just fixed so it's not broke.. What was your issue and how hard was it to get at? Any tricks?

I'm thinking if I can find a safe way to do it I might cut a hole in the bed to gain access (versus dropping the tank).. but maybe it's not hard to drop the tank. As far as I got with it before was checking to see where the fuel was coming from and calling it quits, so have not yet picked up the manual but I assume it's just a fitting on top of the tank w/ a fuel pump down inside and it's leaking from around where the hose & outlet meet.

Thanks in advance!

Jon

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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2016, 04:28 PM
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Some of the 1st gen guys will likely be here with more info, however you're correct. The fuel lines and pump basket are notorious for rusting through. From what I've heard it's easier to remove the bed than drop the tank.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2016, 06:25 PM
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There have been a few reports of leaks at the top of the fuel tank. The top of the pump is plastic and the fuel lines/fittings are nylon, so they won't be rusted. Sometimes the fittings will split or the seals deteriorate causing leaks. The Fuel Tank Pressure Sensor is mounted to the top of the pump assembly and can leak. A more serious problem, especially for those like you, in snow country, is that the retainers that hold the fuel pump lock ring are metal and can rust to the point of breaking. The retainers are molded into the tank and cannot be replaced.

The fuel tank on Crew Cab models is partially under the cab, so access may be a problem, if the bed is moved. An inspection of the area will determine if it more feasible to drop the tank or move the bed. Before dropping the tank it would be a good idea to check the condition of the mounting straps. If rusted, they might break during removal.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2016, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for that guys - looking at it from underneath my initial impression is the straps are fine.. Sizing it up quickly tonight and I think you are right on the orientation of the tank to the bed - may not really be under the bed as I thought initially (this is a crew cab).

That's a good question on the crew cab tank removal - even if I took the bed off is that going to give me enough access to the tank? I guess a 2nd question is do you really need to actually remove the bed or could I just take the bolts out and lift it up enough to gain access? You would think I could just remove the bolts & lift the front of it up 2 feet.

I know, for instance, when installing a transmission in my blazer I was able to gain enough clearance by removing some bolts that held the body to the frame in the front & jacking it up like an inch but didn't need to actually go anywhere near what the book called for...

But then I imagine if those steal parts on the tank are shot, the tank has to come off, so it's getting dropped regardless? I don't really care if the straps break - actually if I think I can do it without starting a fire and it makes my life easier somehow, I'll take a sawsall to them and weld them back together later.

FYI "strangely" at like 120K I got an intermittent evap code I've ignored for the last 120K... it became non intermittent at like 150K.. then not long after the fuel level sending unit quit, so I got one of those codes too.. Then maybe 500 miles ago it began starting a little funny with a mild gasoline smell.. Now it pisses fuel and starts like ****.. None of these things could possibly be related :).. And oh yes I am in snow country and the exterior of this vehicle has been washed 0 times since new.

Thanks!

Jon
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2016, 10:36 PM
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Originally Posted by leaky View Post
Thanks for that guys - looking at it from underneath my initial impression is the straps are fine.. Sizing it up quickly tonight and I think you are right on the orientation of the tank to the bed - may not really be under the bed as I thought initially (this is a crew cab).

That's a good question on the crew cab tank removal - even if I took the bed off is that going to give me enough access to the tank? I guess a 2nd question is do you really need to actually remove the bed or could I just take the bolts out and lift it up enough to gain access? You would think I could just remove the bolts & lift the front of it up 2 feet.

I know, for instance, when installing a transmission in my blazer I was able to gain enough clearance by removing some bolts that held the body to the frame in the front & jacking it up like an inch but didn't need to actually go anywhere near what the book called for...

But then I imagine if those steal parts on the tank are shot, the tank has to come off, so it's getting dropped regardless? I don't really care if the straps break - actually if I think I can do it without starting a fire and it makes my life easier somehow, I'll take a sawsall to them and weld them back together later.

FYI "strangely" at like 120K I got an intermittent evap code I've ignored for the last 120K... it became non intermittent at like 150K.. then not long after the fuel level sending unit quit, so I got one of those codes too.. Then maybe 500 miles ago it began starting a little funny with a mild gasoline smell.. Now it pisses fuel and starts like ****.. None of these things could possibly be related :).. And oh yes I am in snow country and the exterior of this vehicle has been washed 0 times since new.

Thanks!

Jon
Do it right and pull the tank. Only then will you be able to evaluate it to determine what parts are needed. The components need to be crash worthy, not patched up. Getting caught in a wreck with jammed doors is no fun, but add a fire and now OnStar might not be enough....

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2016, 10:42 PM
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I'm not sure I understand in the first post how you don't need it to be fixed nicely, but rather only so it isn't broke.

Um, you realize you're dealing with raw fuel, right? LOL

Looks like it's been taken care of by the answers above. But while I'm here I need to ask you to not use curse language (or any facsimile thereof).
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-20-2016, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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I'm not sure I understand in the first post how you don't need it to be fixed nicely, but rather only so it isn't broke.
Oh basically I meant if there was a way to cut a hole in the bed or someplace to make it an easy job I would happily do that, even if it was poorly patched up when done, because this truck is on it's last leg.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-20-2016, 09:38 AM
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The bed can just be lifted on one side enough to get clearance. I have never removed a bed, completely, to get access to a fuel pump. One advantage to moving the bed is that you can confirm where the leak is coming from because the pump/plumbing will still be operational. Again, not sure if there is clearance with a Crew Cab.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-21-2016, 07:37 PM Thread Starter
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The bed can just be lifted on one side enough to get clearance. I have never removed a bed, completely, to get access to a fuel pump. One advantage to moving the bed is that you can confirm where the leak is coming from because the pump/plumbing will still be operational. Again, not sure if there is clearance with a Crew Cab.
Thanks again - poking around online I found others with the CC stating indeed there is *not* clearance with the crew cab and an inspection of the space between the bed & cab reveals the leak I have (and what I think is that carriage w/ the fuel punp eratta) is just forward of the bed under the cab...

So just completed step 1 - charge battery & remove leaky truck from woods, park in area to be worked on
Step 2, reference manual and figure out what to take off first

It appears in this case there is just no easier way - if I did not have the crew cab though I'm pretty sure I'd be cutting a hole in the bed, there is definitely clearance for it (ie to put a protective piece of plywood in there or something).. just where this lines up it absolutely would not help or work, even if I wanted to cut a hole in the cab it's partially on the corner. I bet w/ the bed completely off it might make the fuel tank job a tad easier as you'd have access from above, but probably not worth taking the bed off if you have to drop the tank anyway.

Jon
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-23-2016, 06:49 PM Thread Starter
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Today I got to it and the tank removal was not bad at all. Once I got my jacks, stands, and some wood blocks round up it was about 1.5 hours start to finish on a windy 20 degree day where I was taking a lot of breaks and not moving too fast; hardest part was figuring out to to take apart little fuel fittings and clips on the electrical parts..

With that said, my issue was the housing was rotted out on the fuel carriage - like you could see into the fuel lines. Every other part of the whole setup, straps, bolts, lines, the parts inside of the tank, all like new - even the retainer ring is in perfect shape and took like 30 seconds to remove.. But the outside of the housing you could have poked a screwdriver through. To remove the lines I just gave them a tug and the metal broke off.

GM - newsflash, you built everything else out of plastic, why not the outside of the housing? Every other part, including the electric pump itself went the distance, the pump housing is just built out of some really poor grade of steal and rotted away. Durr. End of rant.

Jon

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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-23-2016, 08:43 PM
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Thanks for the update. Leaky no leaky, no more?
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-23-2016, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the update. Leaky no leaky, no more?
Haha ya my name here is leaky from when I joined the site back when I bought the canyon, more a historical handle due to fishing & boat related activity.. It's not leaking now but without fuel or a fuel tank for that matter hard to leak fuel :)..

I found the fuel pump setups to be fairly outrageous locally and a big discount online. Was $90/shipped on Ebay for a new aftermarket one from a couple different vendors/brands, about $220/shipped from GM Parts Direct for a genuine GM one (although I think Ebay had AC Delco's for < $200), and any other option locally > $300.

Given the life stage of this truck (has gotta be near death somehow @ 240K w/ bare minimal maintenance since new, ie literally original plugs even!) it's getting the $90 pump and it ought to outlast the truck by a long shot. Should have it later in the week, let you all know how it goes. Tomorrow I'm going to checkout the lines and make sure I can clear the old rusted fittings out of them, may end up ordering a couple of those too just to make sure the re-install is trouble-free. Also going to check the electrical plugs, make sure they survived the removal.

My plan is once the pump shows, get the tank up into position enough to run the truck, check for leaks etc.. etc.. Then when all goes well push it into it's final position, put the straps & fuel fill on, and tidy things up. Other than the fuel fill & the fuel line that exits over the top/front of the tank, everything else actually has enough slack in it to remain connected w/ the tank on the ground. This is something to keep in mind if anyone else ends up having to drop the tank. You can disconnect the line in the front of the tank & disconnect or cut the fuel fill (bottom of the fuel fill is just cheap general purpose hose), and at that point the tank can sit on the ground while you unplug connectors & other lines.

Jon
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-24-2016, 06:25 AM
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Sounds like a good plan. Let us know how it turns out.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-30-2016, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
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It showed up yesterday and got it in today. Some things worth mentioning.

#1 - it is probably not easier to remove the bed for this job (even if you have a model where the pump is not under the cab like mine was). There are only 2 bolts, the fuel fill, the liner behind the tire on the drivers side (a handful of 10M bolts accessed via the wheel well), and some quick disconnects that need to come out to drop the tank. It's not very hard at all, I believe most would spend more time removing the bed than just dropping the tank. As a matter of fact you do not need to remove the rear tire even as the book mentions.

You do want the truck up real high or a couple jacks, wood blocks, jackstands, and that sort of stuff handy. I just jacked up one side of the truck w/ stands & wood blocks for safety, then occasionally bumped it up w/ a second floor jack as needs arose. At times you will need the truck up higher to get under it and slide the tank in/out, as well as having the driver side rear tire sorta "hanging" on the suspension so that you can more easily access the wheel well.

#2 - if your fuel pump was as rotted as mine you will likely not get any of the fittings back that connect to it, it's not worth wasting your time trying to mess with if it looks impossible. All the small 3/8 plastic fuel line fittings can be purchased at auto-zone/equivalent; the vent you can retro-fit to 5/8 hose w/ a hose clamp. What I did on mine was I took a 1/2 to 5/8 union (ie home depot brass parts) and fit the 1/2 side to the original vent line and the 5/8 side to the rubber hose to the vent on the fuel pump. The 3/8 fuel line I cut a section of hose with the old fitting off and spliced a new piece of hose with the fitting on there.

To splice the plastic lines the instructions will tell you to submerge the plastic hoses in water for 10 minutes. Simple hot water doesn't work that well, rather you are better off using boiling water, which does not require 10 minutes. Heat the hose area where you want to do the splice, heat the metal fitting, then wearing gloves (so you do not burn yourself), jam it together quickly and you will have no problem seating it.. The key thing being the boiling (not just hot) water and heating the metal fitting so it doesn't take heat away from the hose during installation.

There ends up being enough clearance on the fuel & vent lines such that you do not need to have all the perfect bends like the original hoses do. I ran my vent line outside of the tank instead of in the little channel w/ the clips for it, the fuel line I built was straight and not well conformed to the thank and doesn't matter. One could probably change parts of any of the fuel lines to rubber sections if they wanted, with the exception of it may be very hard to get a good fitting on the fuel outlet since at the pump there is no barb.

Re-installing the plastic fittings it's night and day with just a touch of grease on the male end, otherwise they do not slide together very nicely when the parts are older.

#3 - although it looks like common bulk parts the fuel fill line is not, it's a size nobody carries (less than 1 3/8, probably 1 1/4) and further inspection revealed it's a hose with 2 different sizes on the ends (with one side being like 1 1/8 and the other 1 1/4).. I spliced mine together with a union, works fine, but if I had not cut it in dead center it would've taken a less ideal mickey-mouse or the GM part # to repair.

Whole job removal to install like 4-5 hours including time spent second-guessing retro-fit fuel line parts because I wasn't sure what was going to fit between the tank & body, and similarly figuring out what to do with the fill.

Jon

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Last edited by leaky; 01-30-2016 at 10:14 PM.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-31-2016, 05:23 AM
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Glad to hear that you got it fixed. I think each person has to use whatever procedure is appropriate to their situation when deciding how to gain access. Some guys don't have the required jacks and jack stands, or a proper place to safely park the vehicle. Thanks for the update.
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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2016, 11:22 AM
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The pull the bed thing came about on older trucks where you needed to drop the tank 6" to get to the lines but the lines would only droop 2". Pulling the bed saved having to replace the lines.
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