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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

Picked up MH from storage yesterday to be able to go away for a week in the new forest. Well..........we're still at home after the gaslow system sprung a major leak just as I connected the refill hose and the solar panel will not charge???(Separate thread)

So, to the gaslow system, just as I connected the refill hose at 'Countrywide Cirencester' there was a loud bang at the bottle followed by plumes of white gas escaping from the gas cupboard. I immediately released the trigger on the nozzle but the gas plumes kept coming for at least another 20 seconds. Luckily, I don't believe there was much gas left in the bottles as I had not filled the system in just over a year as always been using EHU. However, this years plan is less EHU and more wild.

Once the flow had stopped I notice the 2nd Cylinder 90 degree Fill Adaptor(Part no 01-4210) had a major split across the retaining nut thus breaking the seal from the fill hose to the bottle.

This is the 90 degree Fill Adaptor once removed, note the fracture on the nut:-


This is the other side and it can be seen the fracture continues. Luckily the whole thing did not blow off:-


Hopefully, this is not a flaw within the system. It looks to me that possibly this fitting was over-tightened when Brownhills fitted the system 18 months ago, and with time, has now fractured. Anyone have any other ideas??

Anyway, I removed the 90 degree adaptor and reconnected the hose directly to the T-piece on top of the bottle. The return did not appear to be too tight and therefore I considered the pipe would not kink or pull on the joint.

Here is the refill pipe now, and note I am showing the 90 degree adaptor next to where it was fitted, but the pipe now goes directly onto the top:-


This shows the routing of the refill pipe now, coming from bottom right:-


So, after the big leak and believing I now had two empty bottles, as they both appear very light, I went back to 'countrywide cirencester' to refill. The system began to fill normally, and with no leaks, BUT stopped after 13.5 litres. I tried again at another garage but cannot get anymore gas into the system.

Arggg.
Does anyone know why the system won't let anymore gas in please??? Would the rapid way the system emptied caused by the fracture damage the 80% fill valve, the refill coupling or anythig else in the bottle??
Furthermore, looking at the photos above does anyone believe I should replace the 2nd Cylinder 90 degree Fill Adaptor, or leave it as per the photos above? Do I really need the 90deg adaptor??

Ta. 777.
 

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Hi 777!

I don't know if you have a copy of the fitting instructions but this link shows you all the parts...

http://www.gaslow.co.uk/pdf/INSTRUC_inside_UK.pdf

There's some good photos.

The instructions state that the 90 degree elbow is only needed if there is less than 13cm clearance above the cylinder. You seem to have quite a bit to clear. Your system looks quite 'comfortable'!

I think your fill ceased because you had achieved 80%. I doubt that the fractured elbow would loose any gas because, as I understand it, each cylinder has a non-return valve fitted. (It's possible to remove a hose from the filler without turning off the cylinder!) Perhaps some gas had remained in the cylinders that you thought were empty.

A quick Google found some references to sticking non-return valves. I'm not sure whether they referred to open or closed problems. But worth the read.

I take it your MH is going better now that it drives in a straight line? :roll: :lol:

Stay well. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That's interesting UncleNorm,

I have not seen those fitting instructions before and was relieved to see that there was a non-return valve in the fill line within the bottle. I did not know one could disconnect a Gaslow bottle with gas inside. That is good news. Thank you.

It makes sense what you say regarding the fact that the bottles could be 80% full hence shut off, but I'm amazed that we have only used 13 litres of gas in 1 year. Admittedly, we have always been on hookup, bar 1 night, therefore have only really cooked on gas but...wow.
I think I will try and find out how much weight a full 11kg Gaslow bottle must be. The bottles do feel quite light to me, but I have nothing to base that opinion on though. I will also find out if gauges can be retro fitted, as I liked the ones that have the float in the tank shown on the instructions you linked.

It was amazing how much noise, white smoke and gas came out of the gas locker for what now looks like only the contents of the pipes.

Unfortunately, it does look like I'm going to have to replace that 90 Degree Fill Adaptor as the distance from the top of the fixing nut to the roof of the gas cupboard is 10cm. :roll: However, I do agree with you that the pipes do look "comfortable" and nothing is under stress. Nevermind, I will talk to gaslow tomorrow and see if they 'really' need 13cm, and will take their advice.

The motorhome most certainly feels better on the road now, :wink: :lol: it's just a shame there always appears to be something new to get you and fix. :roll: :D

Thank you for your reply tonight, it did ease my worry and makes sense.

777.
 

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I have never seen a broken one of these before and I suspect someone did it up with a long spanner :( . Gas tight joints are made with only enough torque to seat the olive. I also note that it has PTFE tape on the threads and being white I suspect its the sort that plumbers use I think the gas fitters stuff is thicker and may also be blue).
 

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Stress Crack Corrosion?

Your failure looks fairly typical of stress corrosion cracking to me.

This is a phenomena where you need some loading (stress!) but not an excessive amount, and a particular chemical (e.g. Chlorine for stainless steel or Ammonia for brass)

Both mercury vapour and ammonia (cleaning materials and polishes) can cause this to happen to brass. Had the failure been due to pure over tightening the crack is more likely to be a straight line following the smallest section. The jagged path looks more like stress corrosion cracking.

Here is an article:-

http://www.npl.co.uk/upload/pdf/stress.pdf

Grant
 

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As you are dealing with gas and need to be 100% sure the system is safe and secure plus the fact that gaslow would probably be very interested in seeing this I would certaainly contact them and show them what has happened. If nothing else we are sure they might be able to offer an explanation.
 

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As an aside, I have just bought PTFE tape specifically for gas use.

It comes in a yellow plastic container which is marked for gas use.

The tape is white and at first glance looks identical to plumbers type.

I cannot measure the thickness accurately (because it is so thin!) but it certainly feels thicker.

Also, it does not stretch at all, unlike the plumbers stuff which can be really pulled out.

The instructions state "One wrap as shown, 50% overlap, for BS 21 threads up to 2". For all common gases and liquids. Suitable for potable water"

The diagram shows the tape starting at the pipe end and being wound towards the end (start?) of the thread.

So, this info might just help someone determine if they have the right sort of PTFE for gas joints.
 

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From the pictures the adapter has certainly been overtightened causing the brass to fracture under the stress. This is extremely rare, however we have sent the pictures of your unit to the manufactures of this item to see how it could be improved to prevent a recurrence

Regarding the need for the adaptor - it looks like you do have the minimum 13cm therefore it may not be needed but if you do please let us know so we can send a replacement as it is better that the hose is not over stressed.

With regard to your concern over the amount of gas you lost I can confirm that the cylinders are fitted with non-return valves so no gas could escape from the bottle. The only gas that would have escaped is the gas remaining in the hose after your fill. As this is in liquid form under pressure inside the hose there would be a large quantity of gas to evaporate off.

As you state you are unable to get any more gas into the cylinders it would appear that the cylinders are 80% full and that the automatic shut off mechanism has activated. The tare weight of an 11kg cylinder with the shroud fitted is 12kg.

I look forward to you contacting us so that we may help resolve your problem as soon as possible.

Kind Regards
 

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Hello Gaslow and a warm welcome to MotorhomeFacts.

In view of the fact that more and more motorhomers are turning to your products, it would be of great mutual benefit for you and us if your company were to become a fully subscribed member. Several businesses already subscribe and enjoy the opportunities that membership affords.

I'm obviously pleased that your comments have supported mine but receiving information from the experts is always preferable.
 

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Hello Gaslow

Hi Gaslow. :D
I am biased as a very happy owner of a Gaslow system, so I couldn't resist welcoming you to the forum.
:wav:
I hope you become a regular as I know there are many members who have questions about Gaslow from time to time & your input would be invaluable.
:smileycouncil:
Regards Catherine
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi all,

Sorry I have not been able to follow this thread but have just got back from a sweltering time in the New Forest and south coast with no internet (how did we cope :wink: ). We lost 1 day of the half term due to this Gaslow issue and a solar panel problem(which is still unresolved) but had a great time.

Unclenorm,
Thank you, your advice was totally correct and the bottles have been providing gas constantly since we left, so we believe they 'were' 80% full as you said. (and judging by previous usage, probably still are :lol: ) Your timely advice regarding how the system works gave us the confidence to depart.

Oilslick,
Interesting,

brimo,
Absolutely, I have been watching and smelling the joint I reconnected constantly, and I made sure my "Gas detector" in the van was working, which it is and has been silent through out our time away.

Nukeadmin,
Thank you very much for contacting Gaslow, I will speak to them on Monday. Do you have someone specific I should ask for?

Gaslow,
Hello and welcome. Your appearance on this forum is much appreciated. I'm sorry for my late reply as I have been away with no internet connection so was unaware you had made a direct post regarding my issue. I will be in touch on Monday and will have no problems in sending you the 90 degree adapter for your own perusal. Thank you very much for the advice and information. I can't tell you what a relief it was to find out that there is a non-return valve within the bottle on the fill line. The bang as the nut fractured was amazing and the display of white clouds escaping from the gas-cupboard was a sight to see. (and they say a little blood goes a long way :lol: )
Regarding the overtightened nut....maybe someone should mention it to Brownhills-Newark. :roll:
I have now measured from the top of the fixing nut on the fill pipe to the top of the gas cupboard and it is 10cm, so it does look like I will have to replace the 90deg adapter. Interestingly, the fill pipe at the moment is not stressed to make the u-turn onto the bottle top but is just touching the gas cupboard top. However, your advice I will most certainly follow and will be in touch on Monday regarding a new 90deg adapter.

Once again Gaslow, thank you for your post and input. As has already been mentioned, a huge number of Motorhomer's research products on this site and a professional input from a manufacturer has proved very beneficial for both parties. Positive customer service and support done in public on a site such as this spreads the word faster then you would believe. Well Done Gaslow.
 

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Pleased it got resolved - the Gaslow engineer made a comment to me about people overtightening brass nuts "to get a better seal" when he replaced one of my cylinders.

Hats off to Gaslow for appearing on here - great product and a superb service when there is a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hi all,

The MD of Gaslow rang me back this morning and he was helpful and informative.

He was very interested in this failure and took my photographs to the part manufacturer and has consequently decided to modify the system so it cannot happen again. All future manufactured 90 deg adapters will now have a steel nut as opposed to a brass one, so that this over tightening stress fracture cannot happen again.

Having said that, and as he pointed out, it must be remembered that there are thousands of these fittings in service and mine is the first and only failure he knows of. Please note, his only intention was to improve the system and not to dismiss my issue, his attitude was refreshing and should be congratulated. He has taken the time to research this and made sure it can't happen in future systems.

Interestingly, he said my fitting of the fill pipe to the top of the bottle looked fine and he was quite happy with it, as obviously my fill pipe was not under any serious bending stress or kinked. Therefore, it will remain as above and we will not replace the 90 degree adapter. He told me you would not believe how some people try and squeeze these pipes into tight 90 degree bends, which is not good for the pipe and hence the 13cm requirement for all scenarios. The 13cm requirement does have an element of some extra safety factor built in, so in my system it appears that the 90 deg adapter can be dispensed with and 10cm is sufficient.

Thank you Gaslow for your assistance and customer service.

Also, thanks to all on here that helped.

ATB.777. 8)
 

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Too much bend?

Hello all,

I hope that Gaslow pick up on this and answer my question :!:

I read earlier that a minimum clearance of 13cm is required before an elbow is needed. In the picture below you will see that I do not have this and as such there is a sharp bend on the hose. Is it too much?

For those clever people out there you will note that I have a blanking plug fitted 8O This is because our 6kg bottle went faulty so we had to disconnect and cap it.



I look forward to your reply.

Dean
 
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