T200 out of fuel with 1/8th tank showing on gauge

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siduramaxde

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Nov 15, 2005
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Just as the title reads. I was pushing snow this weekend (all weekend $$$$$) and was almost finished with my last parking lot when the loader started to sputter a bit. So I decided to try to make it back to the truck to get fuel. Well, as luck would have it, when I was crossing a 4 lane road it died in the middle or the road (good times). Well, I got fuel in it and reprimed it to get it off the road. My ? is why did the fuel guage show an 1/8th of fuel remaining when it ran out? Usually the fuel light goes on and it beeps at me, which niether occured this time. Do I have a bad guage or is the fuel pickup not all the way at the bottom of the tank?
 

bobcat_ron

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Aug 6, 2007
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Maybe just a bad reader, always be on the safe side, fill it up when it hit less than 1/4 tank, never know what it's going to do.
 

Fishfiles

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Feb 8, 2007
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I doubt it's the gauge , and I'd hope it's not cause it's built into the controller , could be the sending unit , -- the sending unit in the tank should start having the machine beeping and throw a low fuel level long before running out , I think it's 5 gallons left on a T200 but not by a book , you could try and calculate your next fill up against the gauge , and by know what the tank held and where the low fuel beeper goes off , you could probally figure out where it's at ! ------------I am only 49 but came from old schooling and you filled the machine up everyday weather it needed it or not and seen people fired for running a machine out of fuel
 

owensge

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I doubt it's the gauge , and I'd hope it's not cause it's built into the controller , could be the sending unit , -- the sending unit in the tank should start having the machine beeping and throw a low fuel level long before running out , I think it's 5 gallons left on a T200 but not by a book , you could try and calculate your next fill up against the gauge , and by know what the tank held and where the low fuel beeper goes off , you could probally figure out where it's at ! ------------I am only 49 but came from old schooling and you filled the machine up everyday weather it needed it or not and seen people fired for running a machine out of fuel
Yep, I learned my lesson when I got stuck on the side of a steep hill where the machine could not get enough fuel.
 

skidsteer.ca

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Yep, I learned my lesson when I got stuck on the side of a steep hill where the machine could not get enough fuel.
Who knows, the senders used to go bad on the older bobcats but would read too low.
1/8 is cutting it a little fine. I learned not to do that on the JD 6068T engines in the skidders with Standadyne rotary injection pumps, running them out of fuel destroys the injection pump instantly and 50% of the core value. About a $1600 #^$&up. "Its a design limitation" I was told.
Regards
Ken
 

Fishfiles

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Who knows, the senders used to go bad on the older bobcats but would read too low.
1/8 is cutting it a little fine. I learned not to do that on the JD 6068T engines in the skidders with Standadyne rotary injection pumps, running them out of fuel destroys the injection pump instantly and 50% of the core value. About a $1600 #^$&up. "Its a design limitation" I was told.
Regards
Ken
Not only from equipment but from being a fisherman I learned to respect the always full fuel tank , I even fill my trucks up around 1/2 a tank , now days with the price of fuel it makes me feel better only paying $60.00 for a 1/2 of tank instead of double for a full tank ------condensation forms on the inside of a fuel tank on the walls above the fuel level where air is present and migrates down to the bottom of the tank ,the lower the level the more area to condensate , on older tanks that where made of steel , the sweat caused rust , a full tank doesn't sweat and you are always ready to go , fishing can become serious when you out 25 miles out of port and the motor goes down from a fuel problem in rough water , and there is nothing worst than your equipment going down in the middle of the street
 
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siduramaxde

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Not only from equipment but from being a fisherman I learned to respect the always full fuel tank , I even fill my trucks up around 1/2 a tank , now days with the price of fuel it makes me feel better only paying $60.00 for a 1/2 of tank instead of double for a full tank ------condensation forms on the inside of a fuel tank on the walls above the fuel level where air is present and migrates down to the bottom of the tank ,the lower the level the more area to condensate , on older tanks that where made of steel , the sweat caused rust , a full tank doesn't sweat and you are always ready to go , fishing can become serious when you out 25 miles out of port and the motor goes down from a fuel problem in rough water , and there is nothing worst than your equipment going down in the middle of the street
Hey guys, cut me a break. I do always start a job with a full tank, however, when I have been plowing snow (commercial) for 16 hours and the loader only runs about 8-10 hours on a tank, I thought I would have been able to atleast finish the parking lot I was on. In the past I could always run till the light went on and then I would get fuel. That is what the light is for, right??? I was just asking the ? to see if anyone else has come across this problem. I will pull the sender and pickup tube today and report what I find.
 

skidsteer.ca

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Hey guys, cut me a break. I do always start a job with a full tank, however, when I have been plowing snow (commercial) for 16 hours and the loader only runs about 8-10 hours on a tank, I thought I would have been able to atleast finish the parking lot I was on. In the past I could always run till the light went on and then I would get fuel. That is what the light is for, right??? I was just asking the ? to see if anyone else has come across this problem. I will pull the sender and pickup tube today and report what I find.
Siduramaxde
Hey don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I have/would never be in that position. Because I have paid those dues too.
It was a calculated risk you took and because you were given poor information it did not pay off. (which really sucks on a long day)
Our skidders used to have enough fuel for 6 hours on flat ground, climbing a long hill for more then 30 seconds? , better cut that back to 5.5 hours. We work 12 to 14 hour shifts because we are away from home 4 or 5 days a week
When they run out, it was always climbing a hill, at least 250 yards across the cutover slash to the nearest road you could get the fuel truck to, often 500 yards and up to 3 miles. Nothing less then 10 gallons was going to be enough to bleed the system.
We only work in one area a few days, so there is no extensive setting up fuel dumps in remote spots. Also the further you were away the more the insentive to try and finish if you thought you could. Multiply this by 4 machines and operators and you have a logistics nightmare. Dead batterys from operators trying to blead fuel systems, etc.
In the end the solution was to cut the tanks open and increase the volume to 125 gallons so the operator would run out of fuel before the machine would. it saved us days of traveling for fuel over the course of the season, the wear and tear to do so, as well as the frustration.
So yes I have made that mistake, and I do feel for you.
Regards
Ken
 
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siduramaxde

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Siduramaxde
Hey don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I have/would never be in that position. Because I have paid those dues too.
It was a calculated risk you took and because you were given poor information it did not pay off. (which really sucks on a long day)
Our skidders used to have enough fuel for 6 hours on flat ground, climbing a long hill for more then 30 seconds? , better cut that back to 5.5 hours. We work 12 to 14 hour shifts because we are away from home 4 or 5 days a week
When they run out, it was always climbing a hill, at least 250 yards across the cutover slash to the nearest road you could get the fuel truck to, often 500 yards and up to 3 miles. Nothing less then 10 gallons was going to be enough to bleed the system.
We only work in one area a few days, so there is no extensive setting up fuel dumps in remote spots. Also the further you were away the more the insentive to try and finish if you thought you could. Multiply this by 4 machines and operators and you have a logistics nightmare. Dead batterys from operators trying to blead fuel systems, etc.
In the end the solution was to cut the tanks open and increase the volume to 125 gallons so the operator would run out of fuel before the machine would. it saved us days of traveling for fuel over the course of the season, the wear and tear to do so, as well as the frustration.
So yes I have made that mistake, and I do feel for you.
Regards
Ken
So here is the deal. I took the sending unit out and ohmed it out according to the book and it checked out fine. Then I took the fuel pickup out of the tank and it was fine too. The problem is that the fuel pickup tube is about 1.5" off the bottom of the tank. I called bobcat and they said that the hard plastic pickup tube I have is the correct length and it should not thouch the bottom of the tank (I guess they don't want garbage to be sucked up from the bottom of the tank). I guess from now on I'll just have to fill up at a 1/4 tank. Bobcat needs to go back to the drawing board on this design. I really think the gauge should read empty before the machine runs out. This bad design really put me in a dangerous situation (middle of a 4 lane road).
The only way I can think to fix it is to find a longer pickup tube (but I don't want to get the crud off the bottom of the tank) or figure out a way to lift the sender up.
 

skidsteer.ca

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So here is the deal. I took the sending unit out and ohmed it out according to the book and it checked out fine. Then I took the fuel pickup out of the tank and it was fine too. The problem is that the fuel pickup tube is about 1.5" off the bottom of the tank. I called bobcat and they said that the hard plastic pickup tube I have is the correct length and it should not thouch the bottom of the tank (I guess they don't want garbage to be sucked up from the bottom of the tank). I guess from now on I'll just have to fill up at a 1/4 tank. Bobcat needs to go back to the drawing board on this design. I really think the gauge should read empty before the machine runs out. This bad design really put me in a dangerous situation (middle of a 4 lane road).
The only way I can think to fix it is to find a longer pickup tube (but I don't want to get the crud off the bottom of the tank) or figure out a way to lift the sender up.
I can't see it needing to be that far off the floor of the tank. How much crud could there be in there? Also when your operating it is going to get all stirred up and sucked into the filter anyway. I know what I'd do...
Ken
 

Tazza

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I can't see it needing to be that far off the floor of the tank. How much crud could there be in there? Also when your operating it is going to get all stirred up and sucked into the filter anyway. I know what I'd do...
Ken
Do remember the fuel gauge is really a fuel "indicator" they were never meant to be 100% accurate. I have to agree with Ken, i see no reason why the pickup tube should not touch the bottom of the tank, thats why there is a fuel filter! I have my pickup tubes touching the bottom of the tank and i have never had a problem.
 

Fishfiles

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Do remember the fuel gauge is really a fuel "indicator" they were never meant to be 100% accurate. I have to agree with Ken, i see no reason why the pickup tube should not touch the bottom of the tank, thats why there is a fuel filter! I have my pickup tubes touching the bottom of the tank and i have never had a problem.
You can pull the fuel level sensor out the tank , hook the wire back to it and watch it work the LED gague on the dash as you push the slide up and down the tube , you can also see where on the shaft the low fuel level kicks in
 

Farmall

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Dec 24, 2007
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Do remember the fuel gauge is really a fuel "indicator" they were never meant to be 100% accurate. I have to agree with Ken, i see no reason why the pickup tube should not touch the bottom of the tank, thats why there is a fuel filter! I have my pickup tubes touching the bottom of the tank and i have never had a problem.
I'm venting here, but some venting has substance. The gauge maybe only an "indicator", but if it is inaccurate to any large degree, it is not longer an indicator, it's a distraction. My 200 low fuel light comes on when there is between 6 and 9 gallons left in the tank. The gauge is not much more accurate. This increases my stress level and is another distraction for the reasons noted above when I've got plenty of other things to think about. By now I know I can work 2-4 hours after the light comes on, depending on conditions. Subtract an hour or two for hilly ground. It can start sucking air with 4 gallons left in the tank. The dealer says this is normal and there's nothing they can do about it. I have had to break off jobs prematurely because terrain didn't allow me to run it to the end. Bear in mind that the original brochure data listed that was part of my decision making process, and it was listed at 30 gallons which I thought was a reasonable and desirable improvement from the 864. But when I got the 200, which eats fuel faster than the 864----oh, sorry, its only 24 gallons. And then--oh, sorry--the gauge doesn't work and you don't really have 24 usable gallons (you just haul around that unusable fuel forever) and its not our fault. Bull. If model specific gauge problems range from running out of fuel at 1/8 tank to thinking you will run out of fuel when its 1/4 full, you have a 40% gauge inaccuracy across the model. When the manufacturer says this is normal, you know they are pulling a fast one and have a policy of ignoring the problem. If this was a unique situation with Bobcat it would be one thing, but it is not. "We don't have problems with all wheel steer. We don't have problems with track life." It's not a problem unless IR says its a problem. Right.
 

Tazza

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I'm venting here, but some venting has substance. The gauge maybe only an "indicator", but if it is inaccurate to any large degree, it is not longer an indicator, it's a distraction. My 200 low fuel light comes on when there is between 6 and 9 gallons left in the tank. The gauge is not much more accurate. This increases my stress level and is another distraction for the reasons noted above when I've got plenty of other things to think about. By now I know I can work 2-4 hours after the light comes on, depending on conditions. Subtract an hour or two for hilly ground. It can start sucking air with 4 gallons left in the tank. The dealer says this is normal and there's nothing they can do about it. I have had to break off jobs prematurely because terrain didn't allow me to run it to the end. Bear in mind that the original brochure data listed that was part of my decision making process, and it was listed at 30 gallons which I thought was a reasonable and desirable improvement from the 864. But when I got the 200, which eats fuel faster than the 864----oh, sorry, its only 24 gallons. And then--oh, sorry--the gauge doesn't work and you don't really have 24 usable gallons (you just haul around that unusable fuel forever) and its not our fault. Bull. If model specific gauge problems range from running out of fuel at 1/8 tank to thinking you will run out of fuel when its 1/4 full, you have a 40% gauge inaccuracy across the model. When the manufacturer says this is normal, you know they are pulling a fast one and have a policy of ignoring the problem. If this was a unique situation with Bobcat it would be one thing, but it is not. "We don't have problems with all wheel steer. We don't have problems with track life." It's not a problem unless IR says its a problem. Right.
If you have a problem with not enough fuel, why not carry a bit around with you? Just leave it on the truck and you know you will be able to get the job done without leaving to re-fuel?
I fill my machine with a 20 liter tin with a tap on the bottom. I lift the tin and put it on the ROPS, attach a small length of garden hose from the tap to fuel tank and open it up. If i have run the machine out of fuel i let it drain and re-prime the system while i wait for the 20l of fuel to get in the fuel tank. I found its a LOT easier than holding a jerry can and a funnel. It does take a little longer but you don't spill a drop and there is no effort involved in steadying the jerry can and funnel.
Fuel gauges were never meant to be accurate, and when they are accurate its only on flat ground. I spoke to the service manager at bobcat about this once after i bought a new sender. I found it never read correctly, it would never show as being a full tank and he said they are just an indicator that there is fuel in the tank, not to be taken as an accurate indication of just how much is left.
 

primebeef

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Mar 3, 2007
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If you have a problem with not enough fuel, why not carry a bit around with you? Just leave it on the truck and you know you will be able to get the job done without leaving to re-fuel?
I fill my machine with a 20 liter tin with a tap on the bottom. I lift the tin and put it on the ROPS, attach a small length of garden hose from the tap to fuel tank and open it up. If i have run the machine out of fuel i let it drain and re-prime the system while i wait for the 20l of fuel to get in the fuel tank. I found its a LOT easier than holding a jerry can and a funnel. It does take a little longer but you don't spill a drop and there is no effort involved in steadying the jerry can and funnel.
Fuel gauges were never meant to be accurate, and when they are accurate its only on flat ground. I spoke to the service manager at bobcat about this once after i bought a new sender. I found it never read correctly, it would never show as being a full tank and he said they are just an indicator that there is fuel in the tank, not to be taken as an accurate indication of just how much is left.
yeah mine does this too. don't worry about it just keep fuel in it
 
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