How to clean and service the electric tank plunger on GAS IT remotely operated electric outlet tanks.
The major benefit of the GAS IT electronic outlet tanks is the outlet valve is fully serviceable should you suffer from any gas or physical dirt contamination, and whilst we’ve been selling these electric valves for over 30 years and they are used in their many hundreds of thousands around the world in autogas cars as well, sometimes on the very rare occasion you might want to clean the valve to make it gas tight again.
But why would you need to clean the gas valve on a bottle or tank?
Most people think gas is clean and green, and whilst that is true compared to burning other fossil fuels, physically its a dirty petroleum based substance and there is something known as heavy ends in all types of LPG ( Liquid Petroleum Gas ) and it doesn't just appear in refillable gas systems, its in all types of gas bottle and gas cylinder. when this dirty gas gets on all types of gas outlet taps they can cause very small leaks called Letby ( let by ) and whilst its not dangerous it a nuisance when the Gas engineer is trying to do a leak check as any small amount of letby in the gas bottle or gas tank valve could be more than the leak in the gas pipe. This is why gas engineers tend to do their gas testing using their own gas bottle ( and not the tank or bottle fitted to the vehicle or caravan ) as they have extensively selected their gas bottle from the gas seller after testing numerous gas bottles to get one that isn’t letting by. ( let by is that common on exchange type gas bottles )
Firstly, this is not a end user recommended procedure.
To clean the plunger or gas shuttle in a GAS IT tank ( or most automotive Autogas 4 hole gas tanks around the world for that matter ) is only a 5 minute job and only needs 2 tools – a 8mm and 17mm spanner, carb cleaner ( or solvent ) and a cloth.
1) You need to make sure the gas tank is fully empty of liquid gas and that all vehicle and gas safety precautions are made before removing the plunger.
2) Remove the 8mm nut holding the electric coil in place and remove the coil from the plunger body tube. Note the way round it goes – there is only one way it will fit.
3) Use the 17mm spanner on the plunger body tube ( there's a nut shape at the bottom of the plunger body tube ) where the coil was slid on to and remove the plunger body from the valve in the tank ( DO NOT REMOVE THE VALVE FROM THE TANK AS THIS IS NOT A REQUIREMENT )
4) When removing the tube from the tank valve expect there to be a shuttle or plunger loose inside the plunger body tube. Note the plunger / shuttle in the tube has a small spring end and the other end has the rubber sealing face. Make sure this whole plunger is clean and the spring end can move and the rubber face is clean – use carb cleaner, solvent, even WD 40. remove all stick substances as this needs to move freely in the tube. Then also clean the inside of the tube.
5) Look at the round raised face inside the valve body, fitted and left in the tank, and once again clean using carb cleaner solvents etc and wipe clean the face of the valve when the rubber bottom of the plunger seals.
6) When all is clean, assemble the plunger back inside the plunger body tube ( pay attention to the rubber face pointing to the valve in the tank ) and then re assemble using the 17mm spanner.
7) Replace the coil back on the plunger body tube and tighten the 8mm bolt to hold the coil in place.
8 ) Leak check the tank and then check the tank and parts are worked again correctly ( opening, closing and valves are gas tight ) by using certified leak detection spray and by fill the tank with the GAS IT testing system which allows you to use gas bottle vapour to fully purge the fill and tank system with Lpg vapour before putting the recommended maximum of 2 ltrs of gas in the tank. Once you have carried out further functional tests and are happy all is working correctly, then and only then continue to fill the tank fully with liquid LPG. Visit the LPG & Autogas Test Equipment section on the GAS IT webshop to see the recommended purging and test filling equipment. ( https://www.gasit.co.uk/lpg-test-equipment.html )
We will be uploading a video of the process shortly.