Cracks in fuel lines.

Tiny
STACEYMAE
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 PONTIAC MONTANA
  • 195,000 MILES
I drove without knowledge of problem. After a month of driving had a fire in engine. How did the lines hold up for so long. I had my Montana serviced for oil change and air filter. The place I took it to said they could not get air filter off. After getting vehicle back I could smell fuel off and on, did not return the vehicle because I trusted the shop and thought it was possible the mechanic had fuel or something on his clothes and got it in seat cover when moving the vehicle. After a month of driving with the unknown problem the vehicle finally caught fire. I have turned the incident into a claims department. Had vehicle evaluated and was told about the fuel lines being disrupted or cracked during the attempt to remove the air filter. Claims center wants to know how the lines crack and how it took so long to ignite. It has been my experience with these type of plastic lines that when disturbed or cracked they almost crackle? And in time with heat and pressure the cracks expand. Does this theory hold true? And if so how can I prove it to the claims center? Please help me as soon as possible!I am getting the run around and the burden of proof is all on me right now.
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Tuesday, October 11th, 2011 AT 11:37 PM

3 Replies

Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
The fact you waited so long has your claim in jeopardy. If you smelled fuel, then you should have went back immediately. The air filter is a bit tough on that model but did they remove the lines to access the filter? Blaming someone now puts all the burden of proof on you. Most likely, the adjuster will put some liability on you for not addressing the issue in a timely manner.

What does the shop say about the incident?

Roy
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Tuesday, October 11th, 2011 AT 11:41 PM
Tiny
STACEYMAE
  • MEMBER
The shop said that in the attempt to replace the air filter 1 or both fuel lines were either disrupted or cracked. Yes I know the air filters on this model is difficult to remove, that why I took it in to be done. I do not know if the lines were removed. Yes I realize I should have taken it back, but I was trusting in the work performed, and the smell of fuel was once in a while not all the time. I thought it was possible that the mechanic that moved my vehicle in to be serviced may had some fuel or what not on their clothes and got it on my seat cover. I had NO IDEA this would happen. The vehicle was taken to Walmart for the oil change and to have the air filter changed, I had Walmart service this vehicle before at another location with out any issues. I trusted Walmart. And yes, the adjuster will probly still try to put some liability on me for not taking it back right away, but there again I was trusting that they knew what they were doing. But what I am really wanting to know is. If the lines were cracked would fuel leak from them right away? Or would it take some time to get a leak? Like, if the pressure of fuel going through the lines while cracked and heat from the manifold would eventually stress the lines further causing them to expand and cause them to leak? Regardless of the timing, the tech that worked on my vehicle caused damage to the lines causing an eventual fire.
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Wednesday, October 12th, 2011 AT 5:21 AM
Tiny
ASEMASTER6371
  • EXPERT
Cracking of the lines will result in a leak.
As far as right away, no one can say without seeing the lines. Cracking of the outer skin is not abnormal. In your case, I bet the connection is what leaked and caused the fire. It has a seal inside that if the line is distured, it will leak.
The lines are built for pressure. The pressure is what went by the seals and caused this situation.

And by the way, the lines do not need to be removed or moved around to do the air filter.

Roy
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Wednesday, October 12th, 2011 AT 1:23 PM

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