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Old 12-23-2018, 01:25 PM   #1
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Dual Tank Selector Switch - burned out

So driving down to Baja this past Friday - Made it to Glendale CA, and my Van breaks down. I’ve been having some minor issues with the dual tank selector switch, where when I switch over to the other tank the van starts sputtering and then I have to come to a full stop and turn the van off and restart the van to get it to run on the other tank.

This time, it kept sputtering and would not switch over properly. I put it back over to the empty tank and got to a Wells Fargo parking lot to change out cash. Get back in, and then the VAn would not start at all on either tank.

Get it to a mechanic yesterday and after a ton of troubleshooting they conclude that the switch is completely bad and it’s kinda burnt/black where the wires slide on to the connectors.

Has anyone had a similar issue with their switch and know what would cause the connectors to burn out like that? It’s on a ‘93 e350.

The problems started right after the Van got stolen last year and the thieves pullled out my led lights and switches and relays for the lights which were in the same area as the tank selector switch. Not sure if it was related to that or not or just coincidence.

Getting it fixed tomorrow so hopefully we will be back on the road by late afternoon.

On the posiitive side, glad it happened in Glendale CA and not in the middle of nowhere in Baja. And luckily - My cousin live less than 20 miles always so was able to get my wife to stay with her and I sleep in the van in the. Parking lot so I could get to the mechanic first thing Saturday morning.

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Old 12-23-2018, 02:37 PM   #2
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,044
As connections get loose over time, resistance builds in that connection. The higher the resistance, the more heat it produces. If there is enough current in the circuit, it can eventually burn out contacts and plugs. Perhaps your thief knocked the plug loose. Carrying spare parts in Baja, or anywhere for that matter can be a life saver. Had that happened to me, I might have been able to jury rig it by bypassing the valve with a short length of fuel line and a couple clamps. Carrying the factory repair manuals and a fuel pressure gauge would help with trouble shooting. Individual zip lock bags of clamps, nuts, bolts, misc hardware, plenty of tools, a length of fuel line, etc can all be a good idea for remote travel. Hopefully, your back on the road......

Arctic Traveller
2001 GTRV
Advanced 4wd
Agile Ride improvement package
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Old 12-24-2018, 10:12 AM   #3
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Brentwood, CA
Posts: 890
Once an electrical harness has been tugged and ripped on (by some thief), there's no telling. The nice thing is, it's all fixable

Like Arctic was saying, burned connections are pretty typical evidence of high resistance/high current draw, caused by a loose connections. I'm surprised it didn't blow a fuse.

If it were me, I'd revisit the harness around the area that had been abused by thieves, repaired by a shop maybe, closely examine the wires, replace any suspect sections with new wire (solder and shrink wrap only).

Equally as important as the +pos wire, are the grounds. Electrons won't flow if the path is blocked by a bad ground. When electrons try to jump the gap in path, the white powdery corrosion that acts as a blockage, they arc (think arc welder) or jump, and leave burn marks as evidence.

Like yours, my van is getting pretty 'long in the tooth' as well. Bad grounds, and connectors that are starting to get corroded will drive you nuts chasing things that 'sometimes work'. Staying ahead of this, every chance I get, every time I touch something electrical, I closely examine both the connector, and the grounding means. I remove the ground wire, the lug, whatever grounding means that device uses, and sand the contact areas with 100gt paper or hit it with my grinder. In fact, I just did this on my fuel selector valve 2 weeks ago.
1995 E350 7.3 Diesel, 4x4 high roof camper, UJOR 4" lift
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