Propane Specific Preventive Maintenance
Propane autogas buses do promise less maintenance requirements than diesel. But, that doesn’t eliminate all service needs. We’ve put together the top three preventive maintenance guidelines you should be following to help keep your propane buses running smoothly.
#1. Fuel Filters
Propane autogas fuel systems require much less maintenance than diesel fuel systems and are more comparable to gasoline fuel systems. When operating a ROUSH CleanTech propane autogas fuel system, it’s recommended that operators follow the same maintenance intervals and fluid specifications as called out by the OEM for the gasoline engine.
The only additional maintenance items for our propane autogas fuel systems are fuel filters. One filter is added into the filling line on all generations of our fuel systems. Another one is the supply line filter between the fuel tank and engine on a Generation 4 style fuel system.
Both fuel filters are serviceable without draining the propane from the fuel tank. There are no maintenance items within the fuel tank requiring it to be drained for any type of service.
These two filters are recommended for changing out every 50,000 miles.
If the operator notices a decreased filling rate on a unit as compared to others in the fleet, it could be a sign of a partially clogged filter and should be replaced regardless of the vehicle’s mileage.
#2. Fuel Tank – Corrosion and Refinishing
Propane autogas fuel tanks should be inspected for signs of surface rust or corrosion on an annual basis. If corrosion or surface rust is found, the fuel tank should be refinished to inhibit any further surface rust or corrosion from forming.
We’ve worked with our propane autogas tank suppliers to develop refinishing procedures. We also have a FAQ document which answers many common questions about tank corrosion and tank inspection at http://www.roushcleantech.com/service-manuals/.
#3. Special Tools
ROUSH CleanTech propane autogas fuel systems work with standard OBD II diagnostic equipment and require very minimal tooling. However, we created a list of relatively low-cost special tools that we recommend you have in your shop. That list can be found at http://www.roushcleantech.com/training/.
We also have information on several types of propane transfer systems. These can be used to speed up the repair process when in-tank repairs are necessary and require the propane fuel to be drained from the tanks. There’s the ROUSH CleanTech Transfer System that uses in-tank fuel pumps plus two other manufacturers’ transfer systems we recommend. You can find out more at http://www.roushcleantech.com/training/.
We’ve also developed our own diagnostic software application, known as the ROUSH RDT tool. This tool is available to download for free. It’s like other OEM forms of diagnostic software and requires the use of one of our recommended pass-through devices to communicate between the vehicle and the computer. To download the free ROUSH RDT tool, or for more information about the recommended pass-through devices, visit http://www.roushcleantech.com/rdt/.
If you have any questions about preventive maintenance, please contact Mario Genovese at Mario.Genovese@roush.com.