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Discussion Starter #1
Been reading and pondering. I see a lot of suggestions about unhooking/ removing the fuel bowl heater, because they short out and blow fuses and make a mess. In my area we do see some below 0* yearly, so I was leaning towards leaving mine in. So I started thinking, would installing an in line fuse in the heater wire, as close as feasible to the bowl, be a good compromise? The maxi fuse for the heater and GPR is a 30 amp if I remember right, so would a 20 or 25 amp at the heater save the maxi/ protect the harness?

I believe I even read a thread on here somewhere about the fuel heater wire melting the CPS wires during a failure. So kinda paranoid about it, any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated!

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I don't think you need to add an extra fuse in the circuit. If you want to keep the heater, you could "upgrade" to the SD-style unit which shouldn't have the shorting problem. The newer style is (Ford) F81Z-9J294-AA, (International) 1831196C92, (Dorman) 904-210 (Ford/IH may require some minor mods to fuel bowl, supposedly Dorman doesn't). Remember the standpipe is Lefthand threaded!!! I've never heard of the CPS wires getting melted during a failure in all these years. It would have had to have had someone put a larger fuse in the circuit to have that happen (a definite no-no!). Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Mr Feeley! I noticed Napa had the SD heater in Doorman listed for my truck, last time I bought one, I just figured it was their system, guess I was mistaken. Thanks for the heads up on the LH thread stand pipe, learned that one the hard way during a previous adventure. It makes sense that it is LH thread, in retrospect, but a lesson I won't soon forget.

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In the past I’ve fretted about this too and even went so far as hooking up a fuel heater on a retrofit Electric fuel system (where I omitted stock filter canister and heater) on one of my 7.3s years ago. Have since learned that fuel additive packages for winter fuel (least here in Western Canada), are very robust and fuel heater is not necessary. I’ve had my trucks in cold weather -40 C and never had a problem with fuel gelling, so all my trucks get the stock heater unplugged and deleted with E fuel systems.

Not sure where you are located or your winter fuel, but I’d not worry if you are South of 48, unhook it, insulate to prevent from shorting and be happy.
Cheers,
j
 

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I agree with JCart, my fuel heater has been disconnected for a number of years. I live at 6500' here in Colorado 30 miles west of Vail. I haven't worried about it ever since I disconnected it.

I won't say that most owners have the heater disconnected since there are a lot of trucks out there but I will say that most of the owners on the forums here have them disconnected.
 

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Mine busted and shorted when I was driving and hit a pot hole. It shut me down in the far left turn lane of a 6 lane wide intersection in the middle of rush hour. Not a fun experience trying to diagnose the problem in a situation like that. After that happened a few weeks later I pulled my fuel bowl and resealed it. In doing so, I never reinstalled the heater element. I live in where its normal to see negatives in the winter and don't have a problem with the cold. It's not that big of a problem with anti gel already being mixed.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks guys! The six lane intersection adventure is exactly why I was asking about fusing it separately, to avoid that situation. I like the idea of taking it out completely for ease of cleaning the bowl out during a filter change.

Geographically speaking, I'm in central NM, my driveway is about 6400' elevation. I expect about a week of below 0* F every winter. Not certain, but I don't believe our fuel is treated, if it gets to roughly -20*F, the stations all stop selling diesel. I have seen -36*F, but it is rare, not like up North but it does happen.

So I'm thinking smart plan is unhook heater and treat fuel in cold weather. Any disagreements? Any preference on treatment? Power Service is what I use in the big truck, any reason not to use it?

Side note- was sniffing around the power distribution box, and it has the fuse marked as Fuel Heater/ GPR, but it does feed the IDM also right? Or am I REALLY confused.

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The IDM is on fuse #8 under the hood.

Fuse #22 only powers the heater, and PCM relay power.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The IDM is on fuse #8 under the hood.

Fuse #22 only powers the heater, and PCM relay power.
Got it. Thanks. I couldn't understand how it would shut a running truck off if it only powered the Heater/GPR, but I know it does. PCM relay makes more sense.

BTW- thanks for the line on the Bio Kleen Bugman. It's in the tank.

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I use power service as well as Stanadyne with the Cetane additive year round in all our Diesel gear.
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j
 

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Alot of great advice there, I use Howes all year long, not only for the anti gel but for fuel lubrication also. These 7.3 engines were made long before ULSD was out and not designed to run on it, like the newer fuel systems.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sounds good, I kinda had a bad taste in my mouth about Howes, I had it turn to slush in the jug. Never used it since then. But I do agree the fuel system could stand some lube. I use whatever is handy in the big truck, used motor oil, ATF, hyd oil, it doesn't care. But I didn't figure the dump it in the tank and find out method was too smart with electric injectors.

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Just as a FYI just about all anti-gel products will turn to slush or freeze until you get them into the fuel.

If you look on the bottle it will tell you to protect from freezing.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I hadn't noticed that on the Howes bottle, just quit messing with it, perhaps I'll have to give it a second chance. My Power Service in the white bottle rides in my headache rack and has never frozen, so I just stuck with it. Haven't done too much research on other products so that is really helpful information. I did use some of the red bottle Diesel 911 on a road grader this year with some success, but that's the extent of my experience with it.

The Howes experience was years ago, but I thawed the slushy bottles, and heated the fuel tank with a weed burner, then added and mixed, a few hours later the fuel was getting lumpy again. But it may have been bad fuel, no real way to know now.

Thanks guys, as heavydoc said, a lot of good advice here!

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I live in Phx and have been considering removing my fuel heater from the bowl as well. If we decide to remove them completely, do you need to seal up the electrical connector inside the furl bowl? Or is it as simple as removing it and tossing it in the trash?

Mine looks like this:
 

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If it is unplugged I would just leave it alone.

But if you really want to remove it completely you just remove the heater itself. The thermister is what goes through the wall of the filter housing and you just leave that in place.
 

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If it is unplugged I would just leave it alone.

But if you really want to remove it completely you just remove the heater itself. The thermister is what goes through the wall of the filter housing and you just leave that in place.
Bugman, I actually put that particular heater element back into the truck a few months back when I rebuilt my fuel bowl. I didnt have a new one on hand and needed to drive the truck. Is there a way to dis connect the heater element from the outside of the fuel bowl? OR should I just open the fuel bowl back up and remove this broke ass heater haha
 

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There is a spade type connector on the outside of the filter housing. If you noticed where the wire was connected on the inside it is just outside of that connection.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I believe it was JCart that mentioned also, it's a good idea to protect/secure the end of that outside wire so it can't short out.

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