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Thread: Fuel Pump Failure - was I asking too much?

  1. #1
    Fred Trimble
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    Question Fuel Pump Failure - was I asking too much?

    Long story short - I had a fuel pump failure in June 2008 on my 85 K & had it replaced in Ontario (if you think parts are expensive in the States, you haven't bought any in Canada!). I figure the pump didn't owe me anything after 23 years. However, in April of this year the new pump failed - after only 10 months. I had the bike trailered to the nearest dealer here in Michigan - not my usual shop, but the closest to the breakdown. I took in the paperwork from last years repair and the pump was replaced under warranty. No problem so far. Now, here's my question - since I would not expect a new pump to fail in less than a year, I suspect a larger problem based on the bike's age. Maybe failing wiring causing the pump to burn up or...? I asked the dealer to take a look at the pump and tell me what failed so I have some idea to look for deeper problems on my old but well loved bike. When I picked up the bike, I asked what they had found. I was told that the owner wanted to speak to me. We had a, um, less than fruitful conversation in which I was told that:

    1) He couldn't give me the failed pump because he had to return it to BMW as a warranty failure (I completely understand and accept this)
    2) He couldn't have his mechanics diagnosis the failure because it would cost shop time at $80/hr which he couldn't afford
    3) He couldn't have his mechanics diagnosis the failure because that wasn't their job and they weren't qualified to do so.

    So, in the members opinion, was I asking too much of this dealer? (do you think that the fact that I had a license plate holder advertising his cross town rival had anything to do with this?)

    Finally, if any of our estimed master mechanics any insight into this rapid failure, I'd appreciate it. I'd like to trust my fuel supply system again. Thanks.
    Fred Trimble
    1985 K100RT
    2009 R1200RT

  2. #2
    BUDDINGGEEZER
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    I know many times electric fuel pump failure is caused from dirty fuel filters, causing the pump to work harder. This is a primary reason Chevy truck fuel pumps fail. Another reason fuel pumps fail is from heat. The K bike pump is submerged in gasoline to help cool it, which is a good reason to keep the tank topped up.

    Another misconception is newer is more reliable. Go to any auto dealer, motorcycle dealer and check the service bays. There is just as much warranty work being done as working on the older stuff. Sometimes a mechanical part lasts a long time and sometimes it doesn't. This could be your case.

    Ralph Sims

  3. #3
    K Bikes Complex by Choice cjack's Avatar
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    I don't know how they would be able to tell why it failed. If you got a new filter last time, the pump most likely failed due to QC. I think the owner was being too much into why he couldn't tell you rather than simply saying they don't know and to make any guess they would have to cut the pump open which wouldn't work too well for the warranty if BMW asked for the pump.
    The fuel tank connector on an '85 can be an issue. Poor contact after years of use. I wouldn't think it could cause a pump to fail but the contacts should be renewed or at least checked for tightness.
    R1200GS LC Rallye
    Jack Hawley MOA and RA #224, KE9UW ("Chuck")

  4. #4
    93 K1100RS & 81 R100RS
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    128

    K fuel pump

    On the K11OG site, yes I know you have a K100, but there's some good info on replacing the stock fuel pump with a different unit.

    Yes, always a concern to some, but a Ford Escort pump fits with a little help and has the same pressure. Go read about it or post your question there.

    For about $50.00 you could buy all you need and not worry about it any more.

    More than a couple have done it.

  5. #5
    kayseventyfive
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35675 View Post
    When I picked up the bike, I asked what they had found. I was told that the owner wanted to speak to me. We had a, um, less than fruitful conversation in which I was told that:

    1) He couldn't give me the failed pump because he had to return it to BMW as a warranty failure (I completely understand and accept this)
    2) He couldn't have his mechanics diagnosis the failure because it would cost shop time at $80/hr which he couldn't afford
    3) He couldn't have his mechanics diagnosis the failure because that wasn't their job and they weren't qualified to do so.

    So, in the members opinion, was I asking too much of this dealer? (do you think that the fact that I had a license plate holder advertising his cross town rival had anything to do with this?)
    Sounds like a dealer to avoid. BMW should send him to charm school.

    I'm gonna weigh in on the random failure side, here. My present pump is a NAPA 2P74095, Tru Flow brand. Made in USA. $72, with filter sock. For a 1988 FORD TAURUS GL 3.0L 182cid V6 MFI. 65 psi So far so good. The good news is that a replacement is readily available almost anywhere should I have another failure.

    .

  6. #6
    Registered User dancogan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35675 View Post
    2) He couldn't have his mechanics diagnosis the failure because it would cost shop time at $80/hr which he couldn't afford
    3) He couldn't have his mechanics diagnosis the failure because that wasn't their job and they weren't qualified to do so.
    I can understand 2 & 3. Warranty replacement doesn't include paying for the mechanics time to diagnose why the pump failed-probably just pays for replacement plus labor. And for #3, unless BMW offers a fuel pump rebuild kit, his mechanics probably don't have any training into tearing one apart and figuring out why it failed. Their training is probably limited, in large part, to replacing the defective pump.
    I'm not saying the dealer's manner was acceptable, but I think I understand where he's coming from.
    Dan

  7. #7
    The dealer or his service writer could have offered to charge you for diagnosis when you asked them to, instead of having an issue crop up at the end of the job.

    It's unlikely any wiring problems, etc caused the failure of the "new" pump. What is more likely is that the pump lay on a shelf in a warehouse for a long ime

  8. #8
    Fred Trimble
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    Thanks for all the feedback, people. I guess my only option is to ride & enjoy the warm weather. I'll keep my fingers crossed that the failure of the new pump was just bad luck. In any case, I'm happy with my usual dealer. Thanks again.
    Fred Trimble
    1985 K100RT
    2009 R1200RT

  9. #9
    K Bikes Complex by Choice cjack's Avatar
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    These pumps are crimped together. Taking it apart would be difficult.
    R1200GS LC Rallye
    Jack Hawley MOA and RA #224, KE9UW ("Chuck")

  10. #10
    BMW uber alles! Zagando's Avatar
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    Talking Ooh, I like this a lot:

    Quote Originally Posted by Kayseventyfive View Post

    My present pump is a NAPA 2P74095, Tru Flow brand. Made in USA. $72, with filter sock. For a 1988 FORD TAURUS GL 3.0L 182cid V6 MFI. 65 psi So far so good. The good news is that a replacement is readily available almost anywhere should I have another failure.

    .
    Trust that is inside a K75 tank given your moniker; here on the Big Island where there zero BMW dealers every little tip or alternative regarding OEM parts is precious to me and the $72 price tag is music to my ears. Thanks for posting this very useful tidbit, Kayseventyfive! (My pump is fine now but it's good to know of an inexpensive alternative THAT WORKS).

    PS: Along the same subject lines; Napa Gold 3648 oil filters work fine for all early K-bikes (remove the sticker and clean any residue) and also Napa 3012 fuel filters are a good replacement for OEM (I've read and will try soon).
    ---Jeff

    ex: K75S Berlina R100GS/PD , K100RS , R75/5 , R60/2

  11. #11
    kayseventyfive
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    Quote Originally Posted by nh7robmw View Post
    Napa 3012 fuel filters are a good replacement for OEM (I've read and will try soon).
    Yup. I use one.

  12. #12
    Rally Rat
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    Thoughts on K- 100 fuel pump

    Hellow, I used a fuel pump out of a 1985 dodge omni. It was in a field behind my buddys house. the pump lasted almost 2 years. I still bought a new one for a spare. This is what I feel you have to do sometimes.

  13. #13
    BMW uber alles! Zagando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21440 View Post
    Hellow, I used a fuel pump out of a 1985 dodge omni. It was in a field behind my buddys house. the pump lasted almost 2 years. I still bought a new one for a spare. This is what I feel you have to do sometimes.
    Good for you and welcome to the Forums!
    ---Jeff

    ex: K75S Berlina R100GS/PD , K100RS , R75/5 , R60/2

  14. #14
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    Really not much disassembly to the pumps to diagnose. I highly doubt that and electrical problem in the bike could cause a failure. Probably just a defect in the pump.

    The only thing I would think you could do to destroy a pump is run out of fuel frequently, as fuel is the lubrication and cooling for the pumps.

  15. #15
    kayseventyfive
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    Quote Originally Posted by pffog View Post

    The only thing I would think you could do to destroy a pump is run out of fuel frequently, as fuel is the lubrication and cooling for the pumps.
    In addition, my dealer says that a bike that sits will have fuel pump problems.

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