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No fuel through primer bulb

Old 11-12-2019, 07:19 PM
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Default No fuel through primer bulb

Gotta love when you get ready to head out for a great day of fishing when you get boat to launch and it wont start even though it ran great for 100 miles the weekend before. Anyhow motor wanted to start but wouldnt and I tried priming the bulb. Wouldnt get hard but try to start and motor would fire up for a second due to the motor getting some gas. Pulled boat off water and start to diagnose. Pull fuel line off primer bulb from outlet side and squeeze for fuel and get nada. I figure clogged like new fuel/water separator, pull and inspect some fuel in there. Try again and nothing, then I pull primer bulb completley off and test with a bucket of water and it functions as it should. Pull inline hose to fuel/water sep and connect and squeeze (yes I emptied bulb after testing in water) Get some good squirts of petrol then it stopped and couldnt get anymore.

So research here says possible or clogged vent line due to spiders, wax, but pretty sure its not it. I guess next step is to check for a bent fuel vent line??? I've already tried spraying PB blaster in the vent but have not touched it for a few days. Some say to blow air with compressor but not too clear on this fix, open gas cap and blow air into vent line or into gas cap? Am I missing anything else? Replace vent line?? BTW all new fuel filters and fuel lines. Thanks gents
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:00 PM
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Could it be sucking air?
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:41 PM
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Do you have newfangled epa tank vent?

​​​​​Sticking anti siphon valve?

Primer bulb suck air from crack in fuel hose ?
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by mbb View Post
Do you have newfangled epa tank vent?

​​​​​Sticking anti siphon valve?

Primer bulb suck air from crack in fuel hose ?
My vote is the anti siphon valve.
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:58 PM
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The primer bulb is not pumping fuel imo.
The primer bulb has an arrow on it. Point the arrow up.while squeezing for 30 seconds or so to see if it now pumps and stays hard.
If so the check valve inside the primer valve will only pump and stay hard in that position now, and its time to get a new one.
Please buy the bulb and hose assembly your motor maker sells and not a cheapy Perko or other off brand that will always develop this problem prematurely.

If the bulb squeezes flat and stays flat then you can open the fill cap on the gas tank to see if it fills, indicating a clogged vent. A toothbrush and fresh water will dissolve the salt on its screen.

If the bulb opens but will not bring gas, then you have an airleak at one of the fittings, or a cracked hose.

If that doesen't work then you either have a plugged fuel filter or kinked hose.

But I am pretty sure its not a problem with your anti syphon as it is a simple check valve that even when left open with debri betwwen its spring loaded ball and seat will still permit fuel to flow out of the tank to the ball, providing the ball check is working as I previously mentioned.
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Last edited by Bullshipper; 11-12-2019 at 09:18 PM.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:09 PM
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Arrow up vertical!
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:55 PM
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Thats some great advise gents, thank you very much and will look into it. None of my google searches had suggestions some of you did. I will replace the primer bulb and make sure its at my LBS and give it another try then trace back from there.
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:05 PM
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If none of the above tips help just replace everything. New hose, new primer bulb, new fittings and new clamps.
I chased an air leak for way too long and this fixed it.
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Old 11-13-2019, 04:44 AM
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Iíve had primer bulbs cause issues a few times.
I once just cut the damn thing out of the system and ran that boat for years on vacuume/ gravity alone ,No bulb.
Tin boat, 50 HP . Not necessarily recommending this. Point is that those bulbs can and do fail and cause headaches.
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Old 11-13-2019, 05:46 AM
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Originally Posted by jbl_91762 View Post
Gotta love when you get ready to head out for a great day of fishing when you get boat to launch and it wont start even though it ran great for 100 miles the weekend before.
It's a lot better than failing whilst out on the water!
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Old 11-13-2019, 06:46 AM
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One trick that works like a charm is to squeeze the bulb and then put your finger on the outlet before you release. This forces the bulb to suck all the air from the inlet side and bypasses the check valve in the bulb. Squeeze, put your finger on the outlet, release the bulb, wait 2 seconds and then remove your finger from the end. Repeat quickly.


Even if the bulb is bad, it forces it to draw fuel.
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Old 11-13-2019, 07:04 AM
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You can check for a bad vent by simply trying without the fuel cap on. If it works with no cap then you know its the vent. The anti syphosy valve on the top of the tank could certainly be the issue. One thing i would recommended trying is gettinf one of them red hand pumps and going as close the the engine as you can at the end of the fuel line and tryi pumping fuel into a bucket. See how hard it is to get fuel out with the hand pump
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Old 11-13-2019, 08:56 AM
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Is the bulb before or after the fuel filter? I like mine before, that way when I change the filter Iím not trying to suck air out of the filter, Iím pushing fuel through it.
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Old 11-13-2019, 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by leonreno View Post
Is the bulb before or after the fuel filter? I like mine before, that way when I change the filter Iím not trying to suck air out of the filter, Iím pushing fuel through it.
you do not want unfiltered fuel in the bulb
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Old 11-14-2019, 08:48 AM
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Also some bulbs like to hang vertical, Iíve had a few issues with bulbs if they lay horizontal. Think it has to do with the check valve.
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Old 11-14-2019, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Bullshipper View Post
you do not want unfiltered fuel in the bulb
Why?
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Old 11-14-2019, 09:13 AM
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I also prefer to have the bulb before the filters, makes it much easier to prime the filter
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Old 11-14-2019, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by maintenanceguy View Post
Why?
The bulb has an check valve in the inlet side to maintain fuel pressure in the line going to the motor. OP might be sucking air at his fuel/water separator gasket. I'd start w/the simple checks and work back from there. As mentioned, rule out the vent by trying to start w/the fill cap off.

Last edited by Cobia 217; 11-14-2019 at 07:41 PM.
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Old 11-14-2019, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by maintenanceguy View Post
Why?
Check valves do not seal and stay hard with gunk in them from your tank. And the fuel system is designed to suck from the tank to the fuel pump for a number of reasons.
But you can argue your methodology with the engineers at Yamaha, mercury, et al. Maybe you're on to something.

Last edited by Bullshipper; 11-14-2019 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 11-14-2019, 08:45 PM
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A friend also told me to try the bulb arrow facing the sky. I will as soon as I get to it but fishing season is winding down here in Southern California and now its time to break out my winter toys. I will have several winter months to work on this and of course other upkeep to the boat. Lucky for me a local lake is 10 miles away and can always take her over for testing like I do after fixing something. Thanks again for tips.
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