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  1. #1
    Veteran Member
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    Kubota B3200, Ford NAA, IH 454D, Case 1845C

    Default Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    During this past cold spell the fuel gelled up in my 5203. Filled the tank to the top with new fuel, added fuel treatment, installed a new filter and it is 45* here today. I have been trying to bleed it as per the manual, and haven't had much luck. I finally got fuel to flow properly out the bleed screw in the filter housing (after about 100 or more pumps of the primer), but haven't been able to get any measurable amount to come out of the bleed screw on the injector pump. After 200-250 pumps I've gotten maybe a table spoon of fuel to come out of the injector pump screw. I'm wondering if maybe the primer pump is shot? Any other ways to go about it? Any thoughts or advice would be great, thanks in advance.
    Kubota B3200
    Ford NAA Jubilee
    International 454D
    Case 1845C skid steer
    JD 265

  2. #2
    Platinum Member
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    Sep 2010
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    711
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    Virginia
    Tractor
    5210 MFWD

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    This youtube video made by a 5203 owner may help and be the answer to what your problem is.

    JD 5203 John Deere tractor fuel filter change - YouTube

    Any success getting the pre-heater working on 5045e?

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
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    Kubota B3200, Ford NAA, IH 454D, Case 1845C

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    Quote Originally Posted by JD5210 View Post
    This youtube video made by a 5203 owner may help and be the answer to what your problem is.

    JD 5203 John Deere tractor fuel filter change - YouTube

    Any success getting the pre-heater working on 5045e?
    Thanks for the video, I have done everything that he did except for take the hand primer pump apart and clean it. May try that.

    As for the 5045e, I have admitted defeat and will just install a momentary on toggle switch to activate the relay/heater. Somehow the #385 green wire didn't get connected at the factory and I don't feel like taking the whole dash apart to find the problem. I'll update that thread when I get it finished and working.
    Kubota B3200
    Ford NAA Jubilee
    International 454D
    Case 1845C skid steer
    JD 265

  4. #4
    Elite Member Tx Jim's Avatar
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    4,718
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    Coyote Flats,Tx
    Tractor
    JD 4255/Kubota M7040 HDC

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    Are you 100% sure you have good fuel flow from tank to the fuel filter?? If so for difficult bleeders I blow compressed air in fuel tank neck with a rag filling up remainder of filler hole. I only carefully give it short bursts of air so as to push fuel through filter to injection pump. If your 5203 doesn't have a hyd controlled trans I would tow start it. I once owned a 3000 Ford that I could wear my fingers out pumping primer pump and it wouldn't start. Hook a chain on the 3000 and pull it not very far and it would crank. Does your tractor's pump resemble the one in photo?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -pup128_________un24may00-gif  

  5. #5
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    5210 MFWD

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    Looking at JDparts it looks like my tractor and only 4 screws hold the panel that the key switch is attached to. While we have different part numbers for the key switch, if it would be of help I will take my key panel off and take a picture and post it.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member
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    Kubota B3200, Ford NAA, IH 454D, Case 1845C

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tx Jim View Post
    Are you 100% sure you have good fuel flow from tank to the fuel filter?? If so for difficult bleeders I blow compressed air in fuel tank neck with a rag filling up remainder of filler hole. I only carefully give it short bursts of air so as to push fuel through filter to injection pump. If your 5203 doesn't have a hyd controlled trans I would tow start it. I once owned a 3000 Ford that I could wear my fingers out pumping primer pump and it wouldn't start. Hook a chain on the 3000 and pull it not very far and it would crank. Does your tractor's pump resemble the one in photo?
    I'll give those two tricks a try if cleaning the hand primer out doesn't help. The injection pump on mine is a rotary type pump with the injection lines coming out the back. IIRC it is a Stanadyne pump. The hand primer pump is on top of the fuel filter/water separator. I'm pretty sure the fuel flow is unrestricted, when you open the drain valve on the bottom of the fuel filter fuel comes out in a good stream.


    Quote Originally Posted by JD5210 View Post
    Looking at JDparts it looks like my tractor and only 4 screws hold the panel that the key switch is attached to. While we have different part numbers for the key switch, if it would be of help I will take my key panel off and take a picture and post it.
    I might take a look at my 5203 and compare the two, maybe test the operation of the preheat circuit on mine, not sure if it's worth the trouble. Thanks for the offer though.



    I assume once diesel reaches a certain temperature it will 'un-gel'?
    Kubota B3200
    Ford NAA Jubilee
    International 454D
    Case 1845C skid steer
    JD 265

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    The air in the tank worked for me. You simply have to get the fuel to flow. No fuel at the injection pump and they do not run. The small amount of air will help push the diesel along.

  8. #8
    Elite Member Tx Jim's Avatar
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    Coyote Flats,Tx
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    JD 4255/Kubota M7040 HDC

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    2458n
    You're correct. I never forget my nephews face one day when he called me and asked me if I could come over to help him get a tractor started that an employee had run out of fuel. I pulled up to the tractor and checked to see if fuel system had be fully bled. He told me he had been pumping lift pump a long time. I fired up my air compressor(stay's on my truck 24/7) and stuck air hose in fuel filler neck. Long story/short story tractor was running in about 1 minute.

  9. #9
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    Apr 2011
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    cx70,5510,4630,5005

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    unhook the fuel line before the fuel filter blow back to the tank.take off the elbow going into the filter clean it.then see if the filter will pump up.

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
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    Kubota B3200, Ford NAA, IH 454D, Case 1845C

    Default Re: Can't get air bled out of fuel system, 5203, ideas?

    Ok, I worked on it another couple hours today and still nothing:

    -There is good fuel flow to the filter, I took all that apart and fuel flows easily to the filter body, and out the bottom without the filter on.
    -I took the hand primer pump off and completely disassembled it and cleaned it. There was a bunch of crap in it (brownish goo) and the spring was rusty, reassembled and it seems to work better.
    -Tried the bleeding procedure again as per the book, still nothing
    -Tried the compressed air trick and did get fuel to come out the bleed screw in the pump, but very little came out and there was plenty of air still in the pump.
    -Tried the compressed air trick again with even more pressure, to the point I got a geyser of fuel back out the filler neck and still didn't help.
    -loosened the fittings at each injector and tried the bleeding procedure again, then tried cranking it with fittings loose. Finally got a tiny bit of fuel out of the injectors, but still won't start
    -battery is now dead from so much cranking, have it on the charger

    So, I'm about at wits end. I've tried everything I know and can't seem to get it bled, maybe there is something else going on that isn't letting it get bled, IDK. Maybe the newly charged battery will help it crank better and start.
    Kubota B3200
    Ford NAA Jubilee
    International 454D
    Case 1845C skid steer
    JD 265

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