Dickinson Newport Heater Valve Help needed - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 12-27-2009
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Dickinson Newport Heater Valve Help needed

I have a Dickinson Newport diesel heater. I did a fuel meter valve maintenance last year, new float, needle valve etc. It was working fine.
After a long layup, I am not getting any fuel through the heater.
Here are my symptoms:
1. Heater valve open, fuel pump on, no pump sounds and no fuel in
valve body.
2. When fuel line disconnected from heater, pump runs and fuel flows.
3. When I disconnect fuel line and blow into inlet for fuel meter valve
some air goes in, like going through VERY SMALL orifice. I can detect an opening
and closing when I manually open and close the needle valve with the float.
Again, just a slight hiss of air.
4. Valve screen is clean. If I take out needle valve, I get lots of air flow.

Should the needle valve opening be letting more through? Is my fuel pump failing?
Since the valve will feed with gravity only when working properly, it seems that I should be getting fuel from my pump. Perhaps pump is shutting off too easily?

I did all testing with the valve adjustment on full open #5.

I would go ahead and replace the fuel pump, but it seems to be ok and don't want to do so if I am blocking up somewhere in the valve. It should not take a lot of pressure to get fuel flow as these heaters also work with all gravity
fuel supply.
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Old 12-27-2009
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I don't know if this will be of any help to you, but I ran into a similar problem when I changed out my old Dickinson Adriatic for a new Dickinson Alaska. The Alaska is the same basic design as the Newport you have. It sounds as though yours worked fine at one point so this may not be the issue but in any case, the height of the fuel pump is very important.

The following paragraph is from the Newport installation instructions referring to the 3 psi pump and I believe they are talking about the Walbro pump. I have a different pump but it has similar height specs.

IMPORTANT! This pump must be installed as high as the oil metering valve (or
higher). This pump is a “pull” pump rather than a push pump, and must be
installed so that the fuel oil is pulled as high as the oil metering valve and gravity
feeds back down to the valve. Use a rubber backing as a washer to soften the
sound of the pump and use appropriate screws to fasten. If there is no fuel getting
to the oil metering valve, you may need the heavy duty pump # 20-002, or call /
email Dickinson for retrofitting a stronger pressure spring in your pump and
installing a pressure regulator # 20-003 between the pump and the valve
(converting a #20-000 FRD-2 pump to a #20-002 FRD-HD pump.

The pumps can be installed with fuel inlets and outlets up or down, however
mounting the pump with the fuel inlet on top (Note the fuel OUTLET is on the
end of the pump that has the wire connections and the 3 assembly screws), will
give the pump extra pressure and is easier to clean but will need to be primed the
first time only to remove air in the fuel line).

Here is the full instructions for the heater.
http://www.dickinsonmarine.com/Manuals/alanew2008.pdf
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Old 12-27-2009
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Just to add to my previous post. I would narrow it down to the pump or the valve by disconnecting the rubber hose or line from the pump and mimick a crude day tank arrangement using a funnel and length of hose to raise it up. That should tell you if it's before or after the pump.
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Old 12-28-2009
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Trying Pump

Thanks for the tips. I do suspect the pump. It is older pump and is currently
below the tank level and and about 10 inches below the heater valve.
It is the older style pump that could be below the valve. It does
pump uphill when there is no resistance but nothing flows when it is connected to heater valve. Nothing has changed since I last used the heater, probably last spring. Since the heater valve was working then, the pump would be the likely issue.
If I do the test you say, with a funnel and fuel, I would imagine it would
drain out at a noticeable rate with the heater valve on high (#5)?
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Old 12-28-2009
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Old pump vs. new pump

I see the newer fuel pumps recommended by Dickinson are "pull" pumps and must still gravity feed to the valve. Obviously I have an older style. It is below
the fuel tank and the valve, but not far from either. I would have to
do a lot of changes to move a replacement pump higher than the valve.

If the pump is the problem, can I still use a push style pump. I did read somewhere, can't find it now, that the new "pull" pump can push
up to 12" to the valve. Not in Dickinson literature, but maybe
the Walbro info.
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Old 01-03-2010
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Sorry for the delay, I'm at the airport heading back home to the coast right now and when I get to my boat today I'll check the pump and give you the brand name. It's not a Walbro pump but I can't remember the make. It is a push pump and it works very well.

If you do the test, it should start filling up the heater bowl in a couple of minutes. If it fills the carb and not the heater bowl, clean out the fitting at the bottom of the bowl which is accessed from under the heater, it could be plugged. If you cleaned the heater without covering this up, it's likely to be plugged plugged.

By the way, Dickinson should have spare parts for that Walbro pump you have including the pressure spring. Dickinson is very helpful if you call them and they can guide you in the right direction for sure.
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Old 01-21-2010
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I have a Dickinson Newport heater on Jerod.I wonder where did you get the parts to recondition the oil metering control?Was it from dickinson?
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