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Warning - Walbro Fuel Pump Conversions


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#1 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 09:34 AM

And another Walbro conversion......

 

PLEASE stop doing this, you can see how close this one was from melting through the top of the pump unit exposing the fuel vapour to the atmosphere.

Petrol vapour + oxygen + sparking electrics = not a good day.

 

The reason these pumps are obsolete, (and all pumps with the older Delphi 4-pin connectors) is due to this issue.

 

If you have done this DIY may I politely suggest you remove it and convert the unit correctly or buy a new pump unit.

I'm not even going to suggest you monitor it regularly through the inspection hole as this is most probably caused by runaway combination of vibration/poor contacts/terminal heating/softening plastic/more deformation/ less contact/higher temps/ etc

 

When you are running the OE pump you have a greater margin to failure but the obsolescence came from OE applications not conversions, the high current draw of the Walbro just adds to the problem.

 

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#2 swast4

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 09:40 AM

Scary, stuff, that's a bit too close to disaster


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#3 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 09:51 AM

In the States there were disasters, lots, hence the obsolescence.

 

These are what pins should look like..

 

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#4 swast4

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 10:15 AM

I take it, people run this bigger pump, it draws more power and the conections can't take it, this generates heat at the connections which then makes the plastic plug melt, which then melts a hole in this plastic cover to the tank, vapour is released and............... Boom

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#5 smiley

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 10:53 AM

And another Walbro conversion...…

 

 

Which exact unit was this?
 



#6 Johnturner

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 04:43 PM

I don’t think you can get to these without dropping the tank. Can you?

#7 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 05:03 PM

 

And another Walbro conversion...…

 

 

Which exact unit was this?
 

 

 

I'm not sure though I can possibly find out. In this case we sent a new pump out so we will not get to see the OE canister.

This is the 3rd though that we have seen personally, the other 2 were Walbro 255's.

There used to be quite a few images on forums in the States a few years back as this was a very common connector at the time.

 

It's not the pump itself it's a combination of the power draw, plus old, corroded terminal blocks and a lack of knowledge of what to look for and warning signs.

I'm ignoring the installation errors which cause the FPR fluctuations and drain back issues etc. This is just a safety issue.

 

:)



#8 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 05:10 PM

I don’t think you can get to these without dropping the tank. Can youYou can examine the connector through the panel behind the pax seat (UK cars)

 

You can see the connector through the access panel behind the pax seat (UK cars).

If you have not modified the pump unit I don't think there is much of a risk but it would be pretty dim of me to say just ignore it, a quick look to see if there are any signs of heating or unusual discolouration on the terminal block would be a sensible precaution and should only take a few mins.

 

:)

 

Gaz



#9 vocky

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 06:32 PM

also worth mentioning that some of the walbro pumps were fitted way back in 2010 and are starting to wear out, which compounds the issue

 

 



#10 fiveoclock

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Posted 09 February 2019 - 06:39 PM

 

 

And another Walbro conversion...…

 

 

Which exact unit was this?
 

 

 

I'm not sure though I can possibly find out. In this case we sent a new pump out so we will not get to see the OE canister.

This is the 3rd though that we have seen personally, the other 2 were Walbro 255's.

There used to be quite a few images on forums in the States a few years back as this was a very common connector at the time.

 

It's not the pump itself it's a combination of the power draw, plus old, corroded terminal blocks and a lack of knowledge of what to look for and warning signs.

I'm ignoring the installation errors which cause the FPR fluctuations and drain back issues etc. This is just a safety issue.

 

:)

 

Back On Track have seen a couple like this also



#11 Johnturner

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Posted 10 February 2019 - 09:38 PM


I don’t think you can get to these without dropping the tank. Can youYou can examine the connector through the panel behind the pax seat (UK cars)


You can see the connector through the access panel behind the pax seat (UK cars).
If you have not modified the pump unit I don't think there is much of a risk but it would be pretty dim of me to say just ignore it, a quick look to see if there are any signs of heating or unusual discolouration on the terminal block would be a sensible precaution and should only take a few mins.

:)

Gaz


#12 Johnturner

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Posted 10 February 2019 - 09:42 PM

Wouldn’t you have to take the seat out also the bulk head liner and sound insulation. I also can’t ever remember ever seeing an access panel.

#13 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 10 February 2019 - 09:49 PM

Wouldn’t you have to take the seat out also the bulk head liner and sound insulation. I also can’t ever remember ever seeing an access panel.

 

It's on the horizontal section just behind the seat. You can remove it in an Elise and I don't think the seats are that different on the VX?? not sure tbh.



#14 The Batman

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Posted 10 February 2019 - 10:04 PM

to remove the fuel pump you have to cut a access panel or drop the tank :( 



#15 ayresyy

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Posted 11 February 2019 - 07:36 AM

 You can look at the pump connections in the vx through the current access panel, but that's about it. But yes, passenger seat and rear panel will need to come out first.

 

    Is there an off the shelf conversion kit for the connectors Gaz?

 

  I have my Walbro pump connected through the OEM connectors, so would be keen to swap it over if it could prevent a possible fireball behind the seats :excl:


Edited by ayresyy, 11 February 2019 - 07:42 AM.


#16 tommobot

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Posted 11 February 2019 - 02:02 PM

What is the 'prefered' fuel pump replacement choice? - I know these Walbro pumps were all the rage a few years ago - Are there OEM replacements?

 

My VX is pretty much as disamebled as it will ever get so would rather do fuel pump now as its easier to get to and knocking on 20 years old.

 

 



#17 FLD

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Posted 11 February 2019 - 02:27 PM

OEM ones are obsolete so just buy a spitfire pump. Quality product. Job done.

#18 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 11 February 2019 - 02:54 PM

 You can look at the pump connections in the vx through the current access panel, but that's about it. But yes, passenger seat and rear panel will need to come out first.

 

    Is there an off the shelf conversion kit for the connectors Gaz?

 

  I have my Walbro pump connected through the OEM connectors, so would be keen to swap it over if it could prevent a possible fireball behind the seats :excl:



#19 Spitfire Engineering

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Posted 11 February 2019 - 03:29 PM

 You can look at the pump connections in the vx through the current access panel, but that's about it. But yes, passenger seat and rear panel will need to come out first.

 

    Is there an off the shelf conversion kit for the connectors Gaz?

 

  I have my Walbro pump connected through the OEM connectors, so would be keen to swap it over if it could prevent a possible fireball behind the seats :excl:

 

Many new pumps come with these connectors as standard so we can get them direct from the manufacturer mainly as a favour as we also get the new HP pump units from them. We use these on the VHP charged conversions from 350-800+ bhp but even so they still have to be converted for a retro fit and they also have different pins etc so you need a new internal harness.

Then there is all the other conversion work of course to make the new pump output work correctly with the unit.

http://www.spitfiree...mp-conversions/

 

I'm not trying to make you lose any sleep! just something to be aware of.

The other issue with Walbro is that they are a mechanical pump with a substantial metal on metal friction which increases as they wear so apart from being noisy they have the unusual characteristic of using significantly more power as they wear, turbine pumps also increase consumption but this is just on the bearings so is minimal.

 

If you are really not going to sleep then message me and we will see if we can help  :)






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