SailNet Community

SailNet Community (
-   Gear & Maintenance (
-   -   Fuel line shut off options? (

downeast450 12-13-2012 04:55 AM

Fuel line shut off options?
I am thinking through the options for fuel line shut off.

Currently I have a simple mechanical valve mounted to the 90 degree elbow fitting exiting the top of the tank. A 90 degree throw opens it and closes it. I have been preparing a bit of linkage to make this more accessible for my personal convenience and so I can operate it without opening the engine space for access. A solenoid valve would be a good solution. It would be wired to the engine's ignition so it it opens when the key is on and fails closed if the power is off. I like it! Safety and convenience! The problem is overriding it if the battery is dead and I want to start the A-4 by hand with its crank. No electricity means no fuel.

I am thinking I will mount a 3 way mechanical valve right at the tank. Send fuel through the solenoid so it is "automatic" in its "normal" open position and have a bypass line that can be mechanically changed to direct fuel around the solenoid if necessary when starting without batteries is required. A T fitting on the engine side of the solenoid valve should do it.

Sounds simple and makes sense to me. Does anyone have a set up like this? Any reason I shouldn't do it?


overbored 12-13-2012 11:20 AM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?
you don't need a three way to have a bypass. just a tee fitting on both sides of the solenoid and you can use the shutoff valve you have between the tees. if the hand valve is open the fuel will bypass the solenoid.

jrd22 12-13-2012 12:08 PM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?
How about routing the fuel line so you could mount another ball valve in a convenient location. Keep it simple, adding a solenoid is a complication.

bristol299bob 12-13-2012 02:17 PM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?
in my home and automotive life I don't mind conveniences, automation and all that. But on my boat I prefer things old school. My boat has a manual fuel shutoff, and I like it that way.

have I ever forgotten to open the fuel shutoff? yea, once ... opening and closing the fuel shutoff is on my checklist now.

To my mind, the time and money spent automating the fuel shutoff, and accounting for failure modes, could be better spent on other maintenance or on sailing!

downeast450 12-13-2012 03:18 PM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?
Hi Bristol,

I am with you on this, except... The reason I started considering changing my linkage re-design for the mechanical shutoff, to a system including a solenoid valve, was an outgrowth of a fire safety discussion I have been having on another thread, CO2...

One of the strong points made in that thread is having the fuel shut off ASAP if you are dealing with a fire. If there was a fire in my engine space I would have to physically go to the fuel valve and do that. I have no problem with remembering to do it manually. Like you, I have forgotten it more than once but that is not an issue for me either. Changing the location of the manual valve to make the "reach" more convenient makes sense and I enjoy those little projects. That was what I was up to.

If the fuel is managed by a solenoid valve it will shut off immediately when power is turned off. That condition would be more easily managed and be accomplished when the engine got turned off. It makes sense to me now, for safety reasons, even if the manual option isn't a problem.

KISS is my motto, too. Keep it safe is something that should get factored into the equation. I think this "extra complexity" is a worthy one for fire safety.


downeast450 12-13-2012 03:21 PM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?

Yup! Thanks! Ha!


deniseO30 12-13-2012 08:30 PM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?
You can get a "fusible" fuel valve. They are used on domestic fuel oil tanks.

"Product Description

Oil Equipment Mfg 2110 Oil Tank Fusible In-Line Safety Valve - Oil Tank l Water Tanks, Plastic Tanks, Poly Tanks, Storage Tanks
3/8f fsbl inln tnk valve. Fusible valves are approved for kerosene and No. 2 fuel oil. Pressure rated for 10 P.S.I. Valves with standard hand wheel close at about 165 F. ambient temperature. Double seal to prevent stem leaks. All fusible valve rubber washers and o-rings are made of Viton or equivalent material. 3/8" F.
Anywhere that sells HVAC should have them in stock.

chef2sail 12-13-2012 10:19 PM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?

Originally Posted by jrd22 (Post 961004)
how about routing the fuel line so you could mount another ball valve in a convenient location. Keep it simple, adding a solenoid is a complication.


Waltthesalt 12-14-2012 12:06 AM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?
I like your idea, but was thinking of a switch I can throw from the cockpit that denergized the solenoid valve. On my diesel the engine solenoid is energized to close. If you find a solenoid fuel valve that denergizes to close let us know. Failing that what I did was to put in a port in the cockpit that I can open and reach the manual shut-off valve, not the best solution.

deniseO30 12-14-2012 09:02 AM

Re: Fuel line shut off options?

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:55 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.1.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2016 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
(c) LLC 2000-2012

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome