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Tip of The Month……….Ed Sherman

You’ve all heard about the issues related to E-10, E-15, water in fuel and all the horror stories related to fuel in general. Sadly, most of what you’ve heard is true. In fact, if you are running your boat without a fuel / water separator, you’re CRAZY! But, there is a top secret tip you should know about before you run out and buy a fuel water separator just so I won’t think you’re nuts. It doesn’t matter if its a gas or diesel engine, water happens. Keep in mind here I’m going to be referring to the better filters out there, like some of the Racor branded units.

These filter systems are really just that, a system. They have a paper element inside to filter out particulate matter, but the trick is in the way they separate the water from the fuel. Basically they track the fuel down a spiral “thread” molded into a cylinder below the paper element. This spiral arrangement is designed to create a bit of centrifugal force that thows the water out and eventually lets it settle to the bottom of the filter’s sight bowl. Here’s the trick, the speed the fuel travels down this spiral is what determines the filter’s success rate in spinning the water out of the fuel. So, the situation is this, we have a case here that is a bit counter-intuitive. Bigger is not better. You need to be sure the filter you are using is matched to the rate at which the fuel is flowing through the filter to ensure that the spin will be fast enough to be effective at chucking the water off to the side. Always match the filter manufacturer’s engine size / flow rate specifications to what’s on your boat. A bigger than needed filter assembly is actually a bad thing.

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