It has recently been brought to our attention that some users running ethanol-based fuels with various Flex Fuel Sensor Kits on the market have been reporting about line deterioration issues. Concerned that these reportings may involve our kits, our Product Development Team immediately began looking into this. After reaching out to numerous customers and asking them to cut apart their lines for inspection, we have found that some lines have softened internally, or showed signs of deterioration, while others did not. This data was collected from kits spanning over the lifetime of our Flex Fuel Sensor Kit offerings (beginning in late 2018), using numerous hose batches.
Though our Flex Fuel Sensor Kits have always used Gates Barricade Fuel Injection hose, which exceeds all CARB, SAE, CAT and GTS certifications/specifications and is listed as “Multi-Fuel Compatible” (recommended for ethanol), we have been looking into sourcing an alternative since discovering these findings. Over the past week our engineers have reached out to numerous reputable manufacturers offering similar ethanol-compliant hoses. In our discussions we have found that some of these manufacturers have received reportings of similar issues with other popular hoses in recent months as well. This means that virtually any fuel system upgrade or kit utilizing a “rubber” hose, is susceptible to this type of behavior. We believe that this type of deterioration has been going on for years, but is only becoming more noticeable with Direct Injection vehicles (because of how the fuel system is routed/works) and enthusiasts diving deeper into their fuel system with upgrades.
We always recommend inspecting for any signs of leaking or component deterioration periodically for optimal safety and performance. Flex Fuel Sensor Kit hoses are to be treated as a “wear-and-tear” item, and may be subject to replacement over time. Our team is continuing to explore alternative fuel hose materials, such as PTFE/Teflon to offer as an upgrade in the future, most-likely mated to custom fittings. These line assemblies will be sold as an upgrade at an affordable price once we finalize our decision. We will be sure to email another notice and post updates on our website once we finalize this hose upgrade. If any customers are in need of a hose replacement at this time or before this is available, we ask that you please email our Customer Support team at email@example.com to purchase a replacement.
My car is in the shop now to replace pump and injectors. I have 96,000 miles on the car, and the last 35,000 with the Flex Fuel kit. The cause for the pump failure hasn’t been determined yet, but after Phearable directed me to PRL’s notice, I’ll review my old parts for contamination from a rubber hose. I’ve also requested a replacement hose kit to get me down the road until a reliable solution is offered. I really don’t want to lose the added power from ethanol because a rubber hose. If I had suspected the hose of breaking down earlier, I would have saved thousands of dollars for Honda to troubleshoot and replace parts. The warnings and drivability of the car as the pump was failing led me and Honda all over the place to get to the pump. One tech refused to look at the car since it was tuned. An older tech finally agreed to look at it. What a deal this has been.
Wish there was a heads up ahead of time an email or something as a notice. My flex fuel kit was one of those bad batches. My fuel pump gave out due to the gates line degrading with the Ethanol clogging up my fuel pump/feed line. I have to spend 600$ to fix this now.
Is there any update to this? Will replacement lines be offered on your site as a routine maintenance item soon? Or an upgraded steel-braided line be offered? If so, what kind of ETA should we expect at this time? Thanks!