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 Post subject: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 11:20 am 
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Hello guys,

I have an LPG issue. everything has been working fine for 6 months. my car would turn on, the gauge would come on and stay on, and then switch over to LPG when warm enough.

Now all that has changed :(

I turn the car on and the gauge comes on for a few seconds and then turns off. the only way to get it to show again is to turn it off and leave it for a minute and then try again, but it still turns off after a few seconds.

I thought maybe the lights had stopped working and that the LPG would switch over, but it dont! im now using petrol full time :'(

I have a video explaining this. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tPhOGD2MC7A

Paul


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:15 pm 
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Hi
to get the ball rolling.....

What else can you tell us?

We can see the fault is not caused by an empty tank but is it really empty? Is the level gauge behaving ‘normally’ for your tank at its current state of fill? If not, that could be useful info.

Are either of the gas solenoids clicking before the lights go out? Does the engine miss a beat as the lights go out (under load if not when idling)?

If you are desperate to get fiddling – you could confirm all the electrical connections are clean & solid. If you’re still bored – unplug the electrical connections to both the solenoids and tell us if the symptoms change.

Are you happy wielding spanners and multi-meters?

Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:08 pm 
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Hello

Thanks for your reply.

The tank is definitely not empty and the gauge works absolutely fine normally and I pretty much know how much i have left when looking at the gauge. although i know it's not 100% accurate.

I don't hear any clicking noise before or when the lights go out and the engine does not miss a beat either.

I wouldn't know where to start with electrical connections on the system and I wouldn't know where the solenoids are either. lol

Im a complete newbie, i bought this car with LPG system already fitted.

is this sort of problem common? if i was to have a wild, uneducated guess, I would say it cant detect the tank and then just turns off?? because it turns on initially, as if it's looking for something but then goes off.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:33 pm 
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There will possibly be two fuses for the system, one in a permanent live feed and one in an ignition switched feed (this one may not be fused if it is picking up the ignition switched supply from the petrol injector wiring). If they are in inline holders for blade fuses, pull them out, clean the blades and push them back in again. That is a symptom of a poor supply problem. Resistance in the joint, very often the fuseholder, causes it to warm up, the resistance increases and then the system switches off due to low voltage.

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'93 Range Rover 4.2 LSE, Lovato LovEco, sold
'98 Ex-Police Range Rover 4.0, Singlepoint AEB Leo, my daily motor
'97 Range Rover 4.0SE, eGas multipoint, a project.....

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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:42 pm 
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Thanks for your reply also.

But I have not got a single clue as to where i might find these fuses, inline holders or fuseholders lol

If i knew what im looking for then id have a good go at it. need to get my LPG back up and running. petrol is so expensive on a 1.8 Vectra.

not sure if i can find anywhere near me who deals with LPG either :(


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 4:10 pm 
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If the guage is showing nothing when you know it should be showing something then (once basic connections are checked) I'd look for cable damage From the engine compartment to the tank.

If you're not happy checking or cleaning connections then its time to pay someone. There isn't a 'replace box x located behind the right headlight' answer for this sort of problem.

The solution will require identifying and proving each aspect of the system (as Gilb says - start with fuses). I suggested unplugging the solinoids are they consume the most current in the (static) system and had the symptoms changed - you would have had a positive suggestion that its a supply problem.

Are you located near any of the excellent resources on here? if not, I'd look for an autoelec sympathetic to LPG systems.

Expect a visit to a regular mechanic to result in an offer to remove the system.
Expect a visit to a cheap installer to result in an offer to fit their 'preferred' system.

Sorry to be so negative but ( I think) I'm being honest which is more than you might expect from some of the ignorant oppertunists currently weilding spanners for high hourly rates.

Best wishes.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 6:25 pm 
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Although some Vectras had the 'factory' system, your switch shows it to be an AEB based system so is an aftermarket fit. You'll need to look for something like this https://www.electricalcarservices.com/P ... aomv8p8haq or this http://www.vehicle-wiring-products.eu/p ... 9a1ff5a279. It will probably be somewhere near the battery as the system will need a permanent feed and taking it off the positive terminal of the battery is the easiest place. You might be unlucky and find that the installer has picked up the power from either the engine ECU or the fusebox, in which case it won't be so obvious.

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'93 Range Rover 4.2 LSE, Lovato LovEco, sold
'98 Ex-Police Range Rover 4.0, Singlepoint AEB Leo, my daily motor
'97 Range Rover 4.0SE, eGas multipoint, a project.....

Proud to be a member of the YCHJCYA2PDTHFH club.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 7:25 pm 
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The way thats behaving to me looks more like its not seeing either an RPM signal or injector pulsing - This would (or should) be connected to the coil pack or petrol injectors. that usually times out after 10-20 seconds once you switch the ignition on. Is it the same length of time every time it happens? Its possible as said above that the supply fuses aren't making good contact - one of these should be fairly close to the battery positive side (within 6 inches usually) and look something like this http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5-x-In-line-Standard-Blade-Fuse-Holder-Splash-Proof-for-12V-30A-Fuses-Car-Bike-/281792597198 Take the fuse out and check the contacts - if they are rusty or green inside thats likely to be all your problem is, clean it up or replace it like for like and you should be ok.

Where actually are you located?

If you can find the gas ECU and identify it (there should be a makers sticker on the outside of it) and feel confident to do so you can possibly see if it can see all signals with the right lead and software, though if you feel too far out of your depth doing so it may be more cost effective to run it into a decent installer.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:26 pm 
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Brian_H wrote:
The way thats behaving to me looks more like its not seeing either an RPM signal or injector pulsing
Agreed, but it should stay on permanently when the ignition is switched on but the engine not started.

_________________
'96 Saab 900XS, AEB Leo, sold
'93 Range Rover 4.2 LSE, Lovato LovEco, sold
'98 Ex-Police Range Rover 4.0, Singlepoint AEB Leo, my daily motor
'97 Range Rover 4.0SE, eGas multipoint, a project.....

Proud to be a member of the YCHJCYA2PDTHFH club.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:31 pm 
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Gilbertd wrote:
Brian_H wrote:
The way thats behaving to me looks more like its not seeing either an RPM signal or injector pulsing
Agreed, but it should stay on permanently when the ignition is switched on but the engine not started.


The reason I say that is the Landi Renzo system (Also AEB) I've got will do the same (lights go out after about 15 seconds if you turn ignition on, but don't start engine)

It might help if some photos can be taken of the bits that the OP can get to under the bonnet - its definitely a wiring issue either way and may be easy to spot?


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 11:28 am 
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Brian_H wrote:
Gilbertd wrote:
Brian_H wrote:
The way thats behaving to me looks more like its not seeing either an RPM signal or injector pulsing
Agreed, but it should stay on permanently when the ignition is switched on but the engine not started.


The reason I say that is the Landi Renzo system (Also AEB) I've got will do the same (lights go out after about 15 seconds if you turn ignition on, but don't start engine)

It might help if some photos can be taken of the bits that the OP can get to under the bonnet - its definitely a wiring issue either way and may be easy to spot?



Hello Guys!! thank you everyone for replying to me!

here is a video of under the bonnet, i hope ive revealed enough in the video for me to then take the next step in fiddling around lol!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2C4tgI_3C8&feature=youtu.be


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 12:44 pm 
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How odd, it's got Flashlube. I didn't think the Vectra Z18XE engine needed it. Certainly the 'factory' system doesn't have it, and there's reference in the Z18 engine manual to it having hardened valve seats specifically because it was to be used in LPG applications.

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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 2:48 pm 
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Video shows nearly all of the bits so I've grabbed the odd frame and annotated them for you.

Image

This shows the LPG ECU and the side of it nearest the battery should have a label with a brand name on it. The bottle in front of it is the reservoir for the Flashlube system which you have but has already been pointed out that you shouldn't really need.

Image

This is almost certainly the fuse for the LPG system, the first place I'd be looking to ensure it is clean and tight and not all green and grotty.

Image

This is the ABS ECU that controls the anti lock braking system, nothing to do with the LPG system at all.

Image

This is the LPG vapour filter. One hose will go to the LPG injectors (see next pic) while the other end will go to the reducer which you don't seem to have found yet.

Image

and this is the one that shows everything else.....

It's definitely an AEB based system. AEB are a large Italian manufacturer of LPG systems who also supply the electronic components to numerous LPG system manufacturers so the label could say Bigas, Romano, Zavoli, Landi and a few others I've forgotten. But you at least now should know what the various bits are.

_________________
'96 Saab 900XS, AEB Leo, sold
'93 Range Rover 4.2 LSE, Lovato LovEco, sold
'98 Ex-Police Range Rover 4.0, Singlepoint AEB Leo, my daily motor
'97 Range Rover 4.0SE, eGas multipoint, a project.....

Proud to be a member of the YCHJCYA2PDTHFH club.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:27 pm 
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Wow! Thank you for that! Very much appreciated, I will now go and look at that fuse, do I need to disconnect the battery??


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 6:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:01 pm
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AEB and probably Emer given Emer's take on V34 injectors and Emer vapour filter.

Brian_H wrote:
The way thats behaving to me looks more like its not seeing either an RPM signal or injector pulsing

Gilbertd wrote:
Resistance in the joint, very often the fuseholder, causes it to warm up, the resistance increases and then the system switches off due to low voltage.

Agreed with both, either could be the case here but very unlikely both.

Older AEB systems time out if they don't see an RPM pulse on the brown wire for several seconds (extent of time depends on branding and firmware), newer AEB systems don't need the brown wire to be connected because they can be set up to detect RPM from injector pulses. Your ECU is new enough to have the Supaseal interface plug (which we'd expect anyway if it is an Emer system) so probably doesn't necessarily need the RPM wire to be connected (especially if firmware is updated) but still it may be set up to detect RPM using the brown RPM wire.. Would expect a system that needs (or is set up to use) the brown RPM wire to time out just as we see in the video when the ignition is on but engine isn't started but should of course stay on when the engine is running. In case of RPM detection problem would suspect the problem to be one of only a few things: Brown wire disconnected from ignition pulse (was maybe connected right at the coil pack on this engine) / after fitting a different ECU that is setup to use the brown wire (or must use the brown wire in case of an older ECU) / after someone has tampered with rpm detection settings in software.

If you leave the LPG system switched to petrol and the red light on the switch remains on while-ever the engine is running this would go quite a way towards disproving the problem being due to RPM signal (because the red light would go off even while running on petrol without an RPM signal)... except with certain firmware versions!

On Gilbert's point - While the LPG system is in standby mode, even with lights flashing on the switch as in waiting to switch automatically to LPG, the system needs very little power but draws more power when it's about to switch to LPG as that's when it sends power to open the tank and reducer solenoids (the coils on those solenoids should draw about an amp each) and then draw more power again when it starts to pulse LPG injectors. Can easily have situation as Gilbert described where the system gets 12v when using negligible power (standby waiting to switch to LPG) but then voltage is pulled down too low for the system to operate when it attempts to draw more power... And building on that point, if there's a problem with a solenoid coil or LPG injector coil the coil may draw more current than it's supposed to draw, resulting in voltage being pulled down further and/or the main fuse to blow.

Without the interface / software could check main power + feed including fuse, earth connection, disconnected RPM wire probably close to the coil-pack's plug.

Shouldn't need the lube on that engine but won't hurt.

Simon

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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:01 pm 
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Hello again, thanks for your indepth reply

I have taken out the fuse and its absolutely clear, looks brand new, both the fuse and connection.

Not sure what to check next??

Last resort is an autogas expert. Anyone near Chatham Kent?? Lol


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:26 pm 
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p4ulsmith wrote:
Hello again, thanks for your indepth reply

I have taken out the fuse and its absolutely clear, looks brand new, both the fuse and connection.

Not sure what to check next??

Last resort is an autogas expert. Anyone near Chatham Kent?? Lol


Your going to struggle somewhat to find anyone on here down that way on here unfortunately.

If your willing to spend some money on it then getting the diagnostic lead might help IF its missing the rpm feed or similar, You will need a laptop though. Just if you can see what the gas ecu can see it may narrow down the search somewhat.
You might be able to check the wires involved first. Did anything happen prior to this happening (battery gone flat and jump started for example?) All the wires will end up at the ecu (the box shown in the photos which Gillbertd has labelled for you) - see if you can follow them back to where they connect to and if any are loose or appear broken post back with the colours and someone may be able to tell you where to reconnect it to.


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2016 6:15 am 
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OK, so what's this diagnostic lead called and where can I get it??

Thanks :)


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2016 6:31 am 
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p4ulsmith wrote:
OK, so what's this diagnostic lead called and where can I get it??

Thanks :)


First step is to identify the ecu - There should be a make and model on it. Possibly EMER as Simon has said. But you'd best check as cables are different. And you want the right software.

Next thing to look at is the laptop your going to use - if it has a serial port you can use the serial cables available, if not a usb one would be best.

http://lpg-kits.com/ sells cables. So also do some of the suppliers but in both cases you need to know which one you require.

They can be found on eBay as well. Though that isn't always the best place to find them.

Did you see the other question I asked though?


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 Post subject: Re: LPG Gauge turns off
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2016 8:43 am 
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Hello

I have just found the manual for the LPG system and its an 'emer' system. Manual in a different language though lol.

I did not have a jump start or the battery going flat.


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