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[Shop-talk] erratic fuel gauge and a legitimate shop talk question

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Subject: [Shop-talk] erratic fuel gauge and a legitimate shop talk question
From: "old dirtbeard" <>
Date: Sun, 24 Feb 2008 15:07:27 -0800
Hi guys,

I have a 2003 GMC Savana (4.3L V6, 2,500 lb payload) van that I just love. I
have had zero problems with it and it can get 20.5 MPG (not bad for a 4,500 lb
beast with the aerodynamics of a sheet of plywood).

Just last week, though, when I started it up, the fuel gauge showed empty, the
chimes sounded, etc., though I knew I had about a = tank. After driving for a
bit, the gauge went up to = tank again. Next day, there was a repeat of the
same performance.

My guess is that there is a loose connection from the sending unit in the gas
tank or the sender in the gas tank is failing.

I looked at the GMC shop manual, it says:

1.      Drain tank

2.      Drop tank

3.      Remove sender

4.      Test

5.      Replace

Now I will check all the connections I can find short of the above procedure,
but I thought this clever group may have some ideas for how to test the sender
in place, e.g.,

1.      Meter the circuit from the dashboard connector

2.    What resistance I should look for

3.      Etc.

Now I will drain and drop the tank if I need to, but I will be doing this by
myself, it is a 31 gallon tank, I would have to pump the tank to drain it, I
am getting older and dislocated my knee under my wife's car two weeks ago,
etc. It would be a lot easier if I could identify the source of the problem
without doing all of this.

Legitimate shop talk topic:

By the way, regarding the dislocated knee - this is maybe something we should
discuss. I was under my wife's car in the garage just doing an oil change and
changing out a MAF sensor, when while on my back and starting to roll to my
left to climb off from the floor, my right knee dislocated (first time ever
for me, I have had zero health issues to this point). I was not on a creeper
(probably will be next time), and found myself flat on my back, under a car
with a dislocated knee. The garage is located as such that I would not be able
to "yell" for help and I was immobilized. I thought, "This cannot be good."

I was able to pop my knee back into place and get out from under the car, sore
and wiser, but I did think about maybe I should keep my cell phone on me while
under cars or should take some other precautions.

Any ideas? What would you do if you found yourself immobilized while under a
car in your shop? What precautions do you take while working alone in the


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