How to bleed fuel system

Tiny
MATEUS34
  • 2004 JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE
  • 60,000 MILES

Hi there, my vehicle has a 2.7 CRD. It ran out of fuel and I am not sure how to bleed the air out of the system. Have you any ideas? I have tried to prime the fuel rail and it started for a few minutes, but then It cut out!
Hope you can help!
Regards, Matt

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Saturday, October 27th, 2012 AT 3:22 PM

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Tiny
DOCFIXIT
  • EXPERT
  • 18,982 POSTS

Crack open each fuel line connector at injectors, crank when fuel starts coming out close.

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Saturday, October 27th, 2012 AT 8:10 PM
Tiny
NEILBRADSHAW
  • MEMBER

I am sure you have got it fixed by now, but for others with this problem here is my experience. Same vehicle.
I recently ran out of diesel and could not restart the vehicle tried bleeding fuel at the injectors big mistake ended up calling for the vehicle to be collected and fixed USD $400.00 later. Some time after this I had the following problem which I think would have fixed the out of fuel issue.
The dashboard warning light "water in fuel" came on. The light went off the next time the vehicle was started. Then a week later came on again. So reading the owners manual it states "drain water from fuel filter immediately". This to me implies that it has to be done by the owner right away. But no mention of where the filter is or how to do this 'simple' (joke) exercise. Big word of warning do not attempt this unless you are at home and confident about what you are doing as once air gets into the filter the vehicle will not start without properly bleeding the filter.

For the non-mechanics here is the how:

The filter is the thing to the right of the engine and fuel rail with four fuel lines coming in and out of it. Mine is a GUD South African filter which I think is different to the one I had replaced after the running out of fuel saga. There is a black plastic knurled knob (drain) at the bottom right of the filter, which can be loosened or taken out to drain the water. You will have to use your left hand (impossible with the right hand). The problem is this will not come out without releasing the fuel filter clamp which requires an allen key (which bright spark designed this?). Having loosened the clamp you can just lift the filter sufficiently to loosen the drain. It is fiddly because the electrical sensor on the bottom of the filter fouls the clamp. One could un-clip the sensor, but my big hands and fear of breaking it decided that I would manage without doing that. At this stage nothing comes out. You have to release the bleed screw on top of the filter. That is also awkward as the center pipe obstructs the screw, but I managed as the pipe is just flexible enough to squeeze the flat screw driver on. Hey presto the fuel drains from the filter but no apparent water, see other posts on this issue and suspected false warning signals from the GUD filters.
Now the fun starts as after closing the drain and bleed screw the vehicle will no start is it not self priming obviously not.
The fix: Completely remove the drain plug and you will see that it has a bleed connector in it which fits a 1/8" clear plastic tubing (off to the pet shop for that aquarium airline). Now push the pipe on and screw the plug back in (being careful not to twist the tube and close it). Do not screw it in too far or the drain will be closed. Now connect the other end of the tube to a squeeze bottle or similar that you have filled with half a liter of diesel. With the top bleed screw open you should see the diesel from the bottle travel down the tube and fill the filter from the bottom. Continue until diesel comes out of the top bleed screw. Now there is no air in the filter. Close the bleed screw and close the drain plug. Remove the tube. Before screwing the filter clamp tight start the vehicle. Mine took about four attempts cranking for about five seconds each time, then it fired. What a relief. All this took about an hour as access is fiddly. Vehicle go to Isuzu for some design lessons. Without the tubing and bottle there is no way (I believe) to do this. The manual is very misleading and one could be stranded off-road or wherever if blindly attempting to drain water from the fuel filter!

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Tuesday, March 12th, 2013 AT 9:30 AM

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