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My buddy and I drove 5 hours to our riding spot to pull them off and have The General Lee die while warming up...fuel pump whining and then shut down. SMART VALVES closed up! This is after fueling up the night before and dumping a bottle of isopropyl in both sleds. Fished the smart valve out and reset it (no real evident ice buildup or condensation) and dried it out and put it back in the tank. Dumped a little more iso in for kicks. Runs fine.

***NOTE*** could have been an ecological "bad boy" and drained the contents of the tank on the ground (no access to 11 gallon waste container at the time, and the iso should have cleared up any water in the system) and filled up again at the pump with good fresh stuff, but didn't.

"Cooter", my mechanically inclined buddy, goes to restart his F7sp and has the rope break off...he had the "fix" done to his at the dealer BEFORE picking it up. 150 miles and the rope breaks with "the fix"...that's HOT!!!! Riding about 10 miles from the dropoff point and his fuel pump starts whining, but doesn't close up the smart valves...will only run about 20mph. Not wanting to wreck the fuel pump, and not knowing what the heck it could be, shut it down and towed it with The General back to the trucks.....almost! The General decides to suck the smart valves down again 1/2 way back to the truck. Repeat the story above and LIMP both sleds back to the truck!

Now....I like drinking as much as the next guy, but starting a good pissed-off-at-the-sleds booze binge at 11:00am with a fistfull of cash is NOT how I planned to spend my weekend!!!!!! We have identical machines, same miles (160), and we're both looking out the window at the other snowmobiles going by...NOT FUN!

So, to make a long story longer, here's some questions I would like to ask the great minds of the forum:

1- Smart valves...what can be done when they get sucked shut in the middle of nowhere to get it going again for good??? In a perfect world, all gas would be water-free, but I'm buying it from a toothless,backwoods, sasquatch-looking guy that just got the news about us landing on the moon, so the quality of his gas might be in question!!!

2- Smart valves....what kind of preventitive maintenence can be done to make sure that it doesn't happen again?? Besides iso, is there some sort of tank tampon you could throw in there to soak up water??

3- Do I have to become a certified mechanic in order to be able to enjoy 1 trouble-free weekend of riding?

Thanks for letting me vent and for your insight!
-Team Hard
 

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Hey general My buddy had all his updates done at his dealer . Same thing happened the new rop broke and the sniffer valve stuck.So we took it to my dealer pulled the sniffer out and it was the old style .His dealer put a new valve in but the wrong one !!! you can remove the valve and suck through thehose side and it should vent if its an updated valve . I driiled a hole through mine on the top side just off center before it was updated and it freed the valve up. but thats not recommende by cat, but it worked.
 

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1- Smart valves...what can be done when they get sucked shut in the middle of nowhere to get it going again for good??? In a perfect world, all gas would be water-free, but I'm buying it from a toothless,backwoods, sasquatch-looking guy that just got the news about us landing on the moon, so the quality of his gas might be in question!!!

2- Smart valves....what kind of preventitive maintenence can be done to make sure that it doesn't happen again?? Besides iso, is there some sort of tank tampon you could throw in there to soak up water??

3- Do I have to become a certified mechanic in order to be able to enjoy 1 trouble-free weekend of riding?[/b]
It DOES sound like you got some bad gas.. I think I would have dumped it, eco-spill or not. There are the sticks you can put in the tank to absorb water, get them at any auto parts store. But if you get a really bbig charge of water it will overwhelm everything. Best way to clear the valves to get it running is to carry 2 short wires.. pull apart the fuel pump connector (near the tank) and use the wires to reverse the leads. This will run the pump in reverse and blow any shit out of the valves. Crank it 5-10 times or so with the leads reversed and then put the connector back together. That will clear the valves and get it running, but if there is a lot of water, ice, oil, or dirt in the tank it will just plug again in a few minutes. The SVs are just basically fine mesh filters.
 

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Originally posted by teamhard@Jan 27 2003, 02:46 AM
1- Smart valves...what can be done when they get sucked shut in the middle of nowhere to get it going again for good???
1) Fish the valve out.

2) Press the two tabs that hold the thing together and split it apart.

3) Remove white disc.

4) Re-assemble smart valve.

5) Enjoy weekend.

This works, I know its not recommended by Cat, but it works. Went over 200 miles on a sled with this fix with no problems.
 

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Originally posted by Jay+Jan 27 2003, 09:51 AM-->
<!--QuoteBegin-teamhard
@Jan 27 2003, 02:46 AM
1- Smart valves...what can be done when they get sucked shut in the middle of nowhere to get it going again for good???
1) Fish the valve out.

2) Press the two tabs that hold the thing together and split it apart.

3) Remove white disc.

4) Re-assemble smart valve.

5) Enjoy weekend.

This works, I know its not recommended by Cat, but it works. Went over 200 miles on a sled with this fix with no problems.[/b]
Jay, I have to really disagree with that. If you remove the disc, anything that is causing the SVs to crap up (like water, dirt or worse), goes right into your injectors. This is a good way to have bigger problems than just the SV. Also, I'm not sure, but I bet the warranty could be in question for doing something that Cat feels is wrong. I think it is important to point that out, as that isn't the recommendations of the forum.
 

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Originally posted by teamhard@Jan 27 2003, 02:46 AM
My buddy and I drove 5 hours to our riding spot to pull them off and have The General Lee die while warming up...fuel pump whining and then shut down. SMART VALVES closed up! This is after fueling up the night before and dumping a bottle of isopropyl in both sleds. Fished the smart valve out and reset it (no real evident ice buildup or condensation) and dried it out and put it back in the tank. Dumped a little more iso in for kicks. Runs fine.

***NOTE*** could have been an ecological "bad boy" and drained the contents of the tank on the ground (no access to 11 gallon waste container at the time, and the iso should have cleared up any water in the system) and filled up again at the pump with good fresh stuff, but didn't.

"Cooter", my mechanically inclined buddy, goes to restart his F7sp and has the rope break off...he had the "fix" done to his at the dealer BEFORE picking it up. 150 miles and the rope breaks with "the fix"...that's HOT!!!! Riding about 10 miles from the dropoff point and his fuel pump starts whining, but doesn't close up the smart valves...will only run about 20mph. Not wanting to wreck the fuel pump, and not knowing what the heck it could be, shut it down and towed it with The General back to the trucks.....almost! The General decides to suck the smart valves down again 1/2 way back to the truck. Repeat the story above and LIMP both sleds back to the truck!

Now....I like drinking as much as the next guy, but starting a good pissed-off-at-the-sleds booze binge at 11:00am with a fistfull of cash is NOT how I planned to spend my weekend!!!!!! We have identical machines, same miles (160), and we're both looking out the window at the other snowmobiles going by...NOT FUN!

So, to make a long story longer, here's some questions I would like to ask the great minds of the forum:

1- Smart valves...what can be done when they get sucked shut in the middle of nowhere to get it going again for good??? In a perfect world, all gas would be water-free, but I'm buying it from a toothless,backwoods, sasquatch-looking guy that just got the news about us landing on the moon, so the quality of his gas might be in question!!!

2- Smart valves....what kind of preventitive maintenence can be done to make sure that it doesn't happen again?? Besides iso, is there some sort of tank tampon you could throw in there to soak up water??

3- Do I have to become a certified mechanic in order to be able to enjoy 1 trouble-free weekend of riding?

Thanks for letting me vent and for your insight!
-Team Hard
teamhard, were you and your bud in Bruce Crossing, MI when this occurred? I watched two guys have a helluva time with their Fcats. Both died and wouldn't start. Two very pissed off doods.
 

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Rob, I agree with your point, but, your not removing the screen, your just by-passing the valve until you can get it replaced. I recently replace one on an '02 that was completely collapsed, it had nothing to do with contaminates, there was Iso in the tank, etc. They are some that are defective, these things can act up and fail without any contaminates, why else would there be a Bulletin on them??

I'm not saying this is the "forum" or your recommendation, but this will certainly get you out of the middle of nowhere, when the Smart valve fails.

BTW: I'm sure that Cat would not recommend changing the ski's either, but we all do it. They say things to cover their butts, anything that is altered you could potentially void the warranty.

Hey, people have been advised, its not for you or I to make the decision for them.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
actionfigurejoe- No, we were in Valhala, WI at the Pub & Grub bar.

My whole point to this is that there HAS to be a better way than the SV's to keep contaminents out of the fuel line. Something that doesn't shut the motor down and cause you to wreck a weekend. I put the same pump fuel in my truck, my GTO, my lawnmower, my 4-wheeler, and my weedwhacker, and I've never had anything shut down because of bad gas!!!!

I didn't get into snowmobiling to become a mechanic. I'll gladly pay my $8,000 for a machine, but I expect to have more fun, than problems...especially from something I have no control over...GAS! Realistically, what more can you do than to put iso in when you fill up?!?! I guarantee you that 90% of people with SV's in their tank don't put anything in their tank and will someday run into the same problem and not know what to do, but to drag them back and park it!

Here's my really stupid off-the-cuff idea...how about a resivoir, similar to oil injector resivoir, that holds iso. Get the iso injected into and mixed with the gas in the fuel line before going thru the smart valve??? Ok, maybe dumb, but I'm grasping at anything here!!!

-Team Hard
 

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I don't know. All I can tell you is that I buy gas from the cheapest places on the trail, always regular gas, and don't give it much thought beyond that other than the occasional bottle of iso on cold mornings. And in 3100 miles I've had no problems with smart valves, or anything else for that matter.. And I still haven't had the chance to install the updated valve yet. :blink: :blink: :blink: :blink: :blink:
 

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another thing that you can do is take out the little spring in the smart valve, and pull it apart a little, making it stiffer. then put it back in and together, this will make it harder to close, while making it still operate correctly
 

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Discussion Starter #11
flightedF7-
Tried that...no good, still closed on me!

*****Update*****
Just talked to my dealer and the Catmaster tech says that the F7's pull 7lbs. more pressure thru the fuel pump for some reason??? He made sure there was no water in my tank and did the update to the SV's and they still closed up on him. He then removed the white diaphram that closes up the system and ran it for 6 miles. Hey, that's more riding that I got to do last weekend...I think he owes me a beer! Anyway, they seem to think that the springs, etc. of the SV's need to be re-worked specifically for the firecats??? I hope SOMEONE figures it out...I just wanna ride!
-Team Hard
 

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Ideally the smartvalve would be a valve for closing off the gas pickup only when air is in the tank and the gas doesn't reach the valve. A seperate fuel filter would be somewhere else in the system.

Since the smart valve is the only fuel filter in the system, pulling out the white filter is not an option. I guess we should have a coat hanger with us on the trail to avoid this problem.

Some people are swearing by ISO-HEAT as it's supposed to be the better dry gas out there.

I ran into one guy in the UP who said he was using ISO and burned down a piston while using ISO. He said that he runs ISO now to avoid icing, but also runs his F7 on the Ethynol mode to make sure the fuel is rich enough to avoid lean conditions.

Theories continue to abound. . . .
 

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Originally posted by teamhard@Jan 27 2003, 11:02 AM
Here's my really stupid off-the-cuff idea...how about a resivoir, similar to oil injector resivoir, that holds iso.

??? Get the iso injected into and mixed with the gas in the fuel line before going thru the smart valve???
Do you mean inject it into the tank? Because the smart valves are the first place the gas hits the fuel system.
 

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There has got to be something different in the system of the Firecats that is causing this problem. I have ridden well over 20000 miles on efi cats and have never had a problem with the smart valves. That goes for the guys I ride with as well. The comment about increased fuel pump pressure might be the answer but it doesn't seem that would be that hard for cat to figure out. The efi system has been a super system in my book and completely troublefree. The smartvalves have created no problem with water for me when other carb sleds in the group were freezing up. I have always used iso and no it does not burn up your sled. Your sled may burn up when you have iso in it but it is due to other problems, not the iso. Thats my story and I'm sticking to it.
 

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If you guys are worried about water in your fuel, just put ethanol in the tank, here in Iowa it's 10%, which is more than your iso is doing for you, plus if you think their is that much water in the tank that it is plugging up the pickups, adding iso is not going to get rid of that kind of moisture. I'm sure glad i wasn't dumping gas out of my new sled and pissed off, I might have been tempted to have a wiener roast. :D
 

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what dealer does your work is it rv sports
 

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i have never ran iso in the 99 efi never had a problem in 3600 miles but i also run ethonal fuel
 

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there is no fuel filter in a efi sled that i know of anyone else ever find one
 
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