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SE Fuel Sender Repair/Replacement

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Hi,

(No luck with the advanced search, so...)

My fuel gauge indications from time to time drop by about 1/4 full scale (stays down there for a while, sometimes putting on the Low Fuel warning light if the levels are low enough).

I pulled out the sender from the LH fuel tank and cleaned up the contacts and gave the resistive surface a clean. Put it all back together again... but the problem persists.

I should have checked the resistance range and looked for anomalies before I put it back together (slapping myself).

The circuit is pretty basic, so it's either the sender or the gauge playing up (the only other parts seems to be the warning light (and possibly the warning light delay unit).

I'm thinking about buying a new sender or having the old one repaired. I've think I've sourced a new one at SJ Sportscars in the UK (at GBP78), but I was wondering if dealing with VDO (in Australia) directly would be cheaper/easier? (but that means finding a VDO P/N). Unfortunately, there is not much information to go on (The only numbers stamped on the unit are "VDO 826/2/ 27" & "6 88"... No luck when I Googled that). The Lotus P/N is B082L6155F.

VDO have a huge range of float type senders, so it will be difficult to find the right one.

Has anyone experienced a similar problem?

Thanks.

Ian.

P.S. This indication anomaly is not like fuel movement variations. The gauge only moves a little when I'm accelerating/braking.

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Hi Ian,

I had a similar problem a couple of moths ago.When I removed the fuel level sender unit out of the tank on inspection one of the ends of the copper wire that is bound around it had broken away from the soldered conection so the slightest move ment either made or broke the circuit. After resoldering and cleaning the copper wire and slider it has worked fine ever since. :thumbup:

Good Luck

Graeme K.

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Hi Ian,

I had a similar problem a couple of moths ago.When I removed the fuel level sender unit out of the tank on inspection one of the ends of the copper wire that is bound around it had broken away from the soldered conection so the slightest move ment either made or broke the circuit. After resoldering and cleaning the copper wire and slider it has worked fine ever since. :thumbup:

Good Luck

Graeme K.

Interesting... Maybe I missed something. I'll pull the sender out again and perhaps try re-soldering a few of the connections.

Thanks, Graeme!

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I tried contacting VDO with those part numbers and didn't get much help from their technical support online. I would make sure to take photos as well if you do contact them.

Also measure the range of resistance of the OEM unit when you remove it as that might help you find a substitute unit.

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I tried contacting VDO with those part numbers and didn't get much help from their technical support online.

Wow, thanks for that, Paul

I would make sure to take photos as well if you do contact them. Also measure the range of resistance of the OEM unit when you remove it as that might help you find a substitute unit.

Will do.

Cheers.

Ian

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Mine used to bounc around alot past 1/2 tank, so I cleaned up when I did my tank refurb.

Some WD-40 to clean the contacts and some di-electric grease in the connector made it work fine.


Travis

Vulcan Grey 89SE

My Lotus Photo and Projects Album

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Just for info...

 

 

oops... Seems I've been a little tardy in my response to this one  :mellow:  (6 years). I still have the indication problem and when looking for a solution, Google pointed me back to this message thread. Unfortunately, the problem is so intermittent, It's hard to diagnose. Anyway, I checked the resistance of the sender unit and it ranged from 12 ohms to about 222 ohms (the range of the standard gauge is 10~180ohms). I had the gauge looked at but the servicing centre found nothing wrong (It's basically only a moving coil meter with nothing much to break down. I was told that there were no capacitors inside). I checked the earth (on the engine block), and the wiring to the earth, but that was ok, too. I simulated the sender resistance by putting a 250ohm potentiometer in the circuit, sometimes the indications look steady, other times there was a strange flickering (the engine wasn't running and the car was motionless, so it's unlikely induced voltages were causing the problem).

 

I had a look at the circuit diagram and noticed that there is a low fuel delay module in the circuit (located under the bonnet on the right hand side (RHD car)). I had a look inside the module and the components appeared ok (no signs of dry solder joints, leaking capacitors, etc). The components look like standard off-the-shelf items from any electronics store (including an NE555 timer integrated circuit), so even if the delay module were to become obsolete, I'd say it would still be fixable. Then I noticed that the fuel level will still indicate with the module removed from the circuit (so I can't see this interfering with the indications). I thought about changing it anyway... not too expensive... but those who stock it charge crazy postage prices ($80 for something smaller and lighter than a large tube of toothpaste.

 

Anyway... I'll keep working on it... :)

 

Cheers

Ian.

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