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Will it hurt a 963b to run out of fuel?

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by taftech, May 25, 2011.

  1. taftech

    taftech LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    I recently purchased a CAT 963b. The fuel gauge doesn't seem to be working, and I was wondering if it could cause much of a headache if it ran out of fuel.

    I didn't think it would be a big deal, but a friend of mine said he thought it might cause damage, or be alot of work to get the lines primed.

    Any input would be appreciated.

  2. bobcat_ron

    bobcat_ron LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,129

    I've done it once on a D3B and you will notice right away when it's sucking air. The other risk is getting the crap in the bottom of the tank into the lines and damaging the primary filter.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. LandscaperPro

    LandscaperPro Sponsor
    Messages: 461

    Gas engines usually don't have a problem priming themselves, but on a diesel, see if there is a primer valve. Push or pull it while turning the engine untill fuel leaks out. Done this on my Kabota many times. Very easy.
  4. taftech

    taftech LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    It does have a primer pump. The manual says to use it if there is air in the lines, but it does not specifically mention running out of fuel.
  5. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,511

    I do not have one of these machines but in general you do not want to run a diesel out of fuel. Often times the fuel pumps and/or lift pumps are cooled and lubricated by the fuel. Even when you are running a diesel low on fuel, you are running it on very hot fuel, as it has often times been run through the fuel system and sent back to the tank through the return valve. Since you are low on fuel it does not have time to cool in the tank, as it is sucked right back up and sent through the system hot again. Running it out or even low on fuel will cause extra wear and tear.
  6. hvy 1ton

    hvy 1ton LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 582

    Depending on the engine it can be anywhere from difficult to damn near impossible to get it going after it get air in the lines. I had problems with the tank pickups on a f935. Get on a side slope and it would start sucking air even at 3/4 tank. Spend an hour bleeding the injectors and run for 15 min. Rinse and repeat. That was a frustrating couple of days.:hammerhead: Get a clean metal rod and use it to stick the tank every hour. After a while you'll get a feel for when your below a 1/4 tank. I have to do it on my 450.
  7. taftech

    taftech LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    Hopefully I'll have a fuel tank on site soon, and it will no longer be an issue.

    I was just trying to figure out how careful I should be in the meantime. It sure is a pain lugging 5x5 gallon jugs of diesel around (and that only fills the tank 1/3 of the way)!
  8. Dirtman2007

    Dirtman2007 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,366

    cheap solution.. Fix the fuel guage :)
  9. taftech

    taftech LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    Yeah, I could do that. I'm not sure how easy it would be... not sure if it is wiring, or the gauge, or the sensor, or what. When I bought the loader it said 3/4 of a tank, which I assumed it was working and correct. Then, after replacing a few blown fuses, now it stays at less than empty..
  10. bobcatexc

    bobcatexc LawnSite Senior Member
    from IL
    Messages: 276

    I've ran a 963 and other equipment of of fuel before, it's not the end of the world, like some mentioned its more a pain in the ass. Some times you can pump on the primer and get them going and sometimes you have start cracking injector lines and bleeding the air out which is a pain. Seems like all older Cat equipment the fuel gages dont' work a 963 depending on how you run it should last about 8-10 hrs like Ron said once you hear it sucking for air shut it off immediately and you might beable to save it.

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