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Wife put E-85 in her Liberty CRD

crash227crash227 Posts: 45
edited April 2014 in Jeep
After two (2) years of no mistakes with our Diesel my wife put E-85 in it this evening. It quit after she drove about a 1/2 mile from the Gas Station. She did not know what she did until I came to the rescue and smelled alcohol when I drained what I thought was "Water" from the Filter/Water Separator. A quick check of the receipt confirmed she bought E-85 instead of Diesel! Tomorrow, I plan to have it towed home so I can empty the fuel tank and put fresh diesel fuel back into it, and purge the remainder of the E-85 out thru the water separator/bleeder. Does anyone have any experience with this problem? What are my chances for minimal or no damage? What else should I do and/or look for before I start it up with fresh diesel? Would it be a good idea to change the oil before I try to run it? I'm hoping that since it shut down quickly when nearly pure E-85 got through the fuel system that there was no engine damage or very little. Thanks in advance for quick responses.


  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    For some encouragement you may want to read Filled 40% of fuel tank with E85 by mistake in 1999 Nissan Sentra but I'd like to hear from other Liberty CRD owners. Anyone?

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • I am trying to determine the best way to empty all of the (E-85 wrong fuel) fuel from my Diesel Liberty. A friend suggested using the fuel pump and attaching a hose to the discharge to pump it to a gas can. I have less than ten (10) gallons of fuel in it, so two (2) 5 gallon gas cans will do it. I might try using a siphon pump through the gas filler port. Any suggestions? My plan is to fill the tank with fresh clean diesel and some additive after I get all the E-85 out. Hoping for some good advice and that my CRD fires up and runs good.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Siphoning is simple and straightforward but be VERY careful! I don't know about the Liberty but oftentimes the fuel port has a mesh filter that will make it very difficult or impossible to insert the hose into the gas tank.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • I almost had my Liberty towed to a Jeep Dealer to have this work done. They said the fuel tank must be removed to do the job right for a cost I did not even want to hear. I'm glad I decided on the DIY solution because I saved several hundred dollars, at least, and I got the job done in less then 3 hours.

    We had the Liberty towed home today. After work I stopped by Autozone and picked up a few supplies and started the job at about 6:30 p.m. Disconnected the battery first.

    Couldn't get the siphon pump hose into the tank from the filler spout so I disconnected the fuel line at the filter housing inlet and hooked the siphon pump to the line that comes from the fuel tank. I pumped out all the E-85 out, added about a gallon of diesel and pumped that out. Then jumped on the trailer hitch while my son pumped out whatever would come out. When I banged on the bottom of the fuel tank it sounded pretty empty to me.

    I split the 9 gallons of siphoned out Diesel laced E-85 between my other 3 cars then topped off the tanks with fresh gas. All are running fine with the very diluted multi-fuel mix.

    I disconnected the outlet hose from the fuel filter, then disconnected the wiring for the Water In Filter Sensor (WIF). After pulling the hoses and wiring away I was able to put a stap-wrench around the filter housing and loosen it. I jacked up the front end, put it on jack stands and finished removing the filter from underneath. Had to be careful not to spill any fuel since it was still full.

    Took the WIF sensor out of the old filter and put it in the new filter. Filled the new filter with fresh diesel fuel with an additive, wet the gasket with same and spun the new filter on. Tightened it with the strap wrench. Reconnected the WIF sensor wiring.

    Put nearly ten (10) gallons of fresh diesel fuel in the tank along with a healthy dose of a good additive. Siphoned some fresh fuel thru the line and into a can to make sure it was flushed out good. Put the hoses back on the filter inlet and outlet.

    Opened the bleeder, attached a clear hose to a jar (like bleeding brakes) and pumped the primer until diesel fuel was coming thru the clear hose with no air bubbles. Shut the bleeder, removed the clear hose, and pumped up the primer until it was firm.

    Cranked the engine a bit, pumped the primer again (crank-pump, crank-pump several times) and then it fired up, grumbled a bit and smoothed out quickly. Checked for leaks from top and bottom and found none. Drove to Speedway, filled it up with Diesel and went for a test drive.

    Checked for leaks again from top and bottom, found none. Tomorrow I will change the oil and check everything out again, plus go for a longer test drive.

    I feel lucky that there appears to be no damage to the engine from the E-85 experienceh and hope that someone finds this helpful.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    I'm glad you got that fixed and saved a lot of money in the process! And thanks for the detailed description. One never knows when that may come in handy. :)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • siberiasiberia Posts: 520
    My '92 Dakota has an anti-siphon device in the filler to the tank that prevents siphoning or fuel spill in a rollover. It's just a ping pong ball in a trap. Sounds like our Jeeps might have the same device.

    I think you did everything right except for one minor thing that doesn't matter if your CRD is running okay now. As a general rule unfiltered diesel fuel should never be poured into the fuel filter. The filter should be put on empty and fuel drawn through it. There are instances on where raw diesel fuel was poured into fuel filters and the injectors were clogged by something in the fuel.

    Thanks for the detail. I hope you didn't get too upset with the wife. I got a little upset with my wife once because she locked herself out of the house and I had to leave work on a busy day. Then, about a month later, I did the same thing - pretty embarrassing. :blush:
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