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Fuel gauges on the Carver 390 CPMY

Discussion in 'Carver Yacht' started by Joe Graceffo, Jul 21, 2016.

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  1. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    My new purchase has 3 fuel tanks, port and stbd tanks in the engine room and an aux tank in the lazarette. The fuel guages at either helm unit has a toggle for the stbd tank and the port aux. I recently learned the hard way (in that I managed to run the one tank dry and killing both engines) that only one tank in the engine room is guaged, and that the aux tank in the lazarette is measured by toggling the "port aux". Is this typical of Carver 3 tank boats or is it peculiar to the 390 or only on my boat? Does Carver assume that only one tank in the engine room needs to be gauged as both tanks should run down evenly as each engine only draws from and returns to it's own tank? Do any of you with this boat model have a third, seperate gauge for the aux tank or are you setup as I am? None of this was explained to me beforehand so I am stumbling along as I go getting familiar with this boat.
  2. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    I've seen several Carver with that gauge, but not with the aux. tank. How many gals is the Aux. tank? Sounds like just some extra gals. for if you go past 'E', but the gauge should be reading the port and stbd tanks, not the Aux. The Aux may only feed the port motor as a get home measure. Odd configuration if that's the case.
  3. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    The aux tank is 100 gals and it must have been feeding both engines as the stbd engine shutdown first, followed by the port engine a minute later. The stbd fuel gauge still showed full at time of shutdown and both engine room tanks were topped up 3 hours prior. It was my intention to run off those full tanks on the trip home and then top up again at the end of the trip to get an idea of fuel consumption.
  4. trmnewt

    trmnewt Member

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    My old '96 355 Aft Cabin had the same arrangement--3 tanks, 2 fuel gauges, 1 of which was shared by 2 tanks and controlled by a toggle switch.
  5. Bucketlist

    Bucketlist New Member

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    My 356 is also like trmnewt. The right side of the dash has a toggle that reads port and starboard. When you hold it to either side the gauge shows the fuel in the corresponding tank. The Aux tank toggle is on the left side of the panel. You need to open the bilge to switch tanks manually between the hangers (port and starboard ) and the aux (rear). To be clear...your 390 does not have a switch that toggles b/w the two ?
  6. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    Mine has two switches, one for stbd and the other for port aux. I had incorrectly assumed that the port aux was for the port engine room tank. I will have to re-label it to read "stern tank" or some such, and re-label the "stbd" switch to read engine room tanks. I'm not sure if there is a toggle, per se, on that port aux switch, I do think that it only goes in one direction and doesn't allow you to toggle between port and aux.
  7. Bucketlist

    Bucketlist New Member

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    Try that port/aux switch as a toggle. I can't imaging that the there is not a gauge reading for each tank. For pure safety reasons you need to know how much fuel you have at all times. Somethings not adding up. What year is the boat. Maybe post a picture of the dash and the switches. Would love to help.
  8. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    I agree with you that all tanks should be gauged. I am away from the boat for a couple weeks so when I get back I will try to "toggle" the port/aux switch and also take a photo to include in this thread. Thanks for your help.
  9. timeout

    timeout New Member

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    One other quick thought. Assuming all are full, I run from the side tanks first, until half full or so. Then switch to the stern tank.
    If you run from the stern tank first, you will soon start to run bow heavy. Definitely keep the stern tank in the
    rotation, so as to keep fresh fuel in the system.
  10. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    Thanks Timeout. We are planning a short cruise in Sept and I will have to fill the stern tank before we leave. I was actually thinking of running off the stern tank first, as on the trip up, with the wind on the stern quarter, waves were breaking on the outboard motor and dinghy, so I was trying to trim the boat bow down in order to lift the stern. So I thought I would burn off the stern first. Considering your recommendation, I will re-assess.
  11. trmnewt

    trmnewt Member

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    +1 bucketlist. My 355 had fuel levers under the salon sole for each engine. Could select port, starboard, or aux for each. I used to run each engine off the tank on it's side, and if necessary switch both to aux.
  12. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    On a boat like the carver, most of them run stern heavy and it would probably run faster and help it stay on plane by draining the cockpit first. Now in rough seas, you're better off draining the foward tanks first.

    Do the 2 tanks in the engine room have a hose at the bottom of the tank, running from one side to the other, to equalize them? If in fact they do, then you only need one gauge as they'll equalize the level in them.
  13. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    I haven't checked yet if there is an equalizer between the two, but there is a transfer pump between the two, which would be somewhat redundant if there was an equalizer hose.
  14. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    I did find the fuel tank selector and it was only after running the stern tank dry that I realized I misinterpreted the way they were set :mad:, and that I had misread the fuel tank gauges.
  15. trmnewt

    trmnewt Member

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    Mine didn't have a hose or equalizer pump. My boating at the time was primarily inland lakes, so boat trim was not so much of an issue.
  16. leeky

    leeky Senior Member

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    I have no experience with a Carver 390 CPMY, but if you can see the fuel tanks, you could look for a wire connected to the port tank. That would let you know whether the port tank was intended to be "gauged" or not.
  17. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    Good point. I'll have a look next time I'm down there.
  18. Bucketlist

    Bucketlist New Member

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    It is vital that all tanks are gauged. My carver draws fuel from the port tank for the generator. This will cause unequal amounts in the hanger tanks. This is important info. What year is your 390?
  19. Joe Graceffo

    Joe Graceffo New Member

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    It is a 1994 with no generator.
  20. hipnautic

    hipnautic New Member

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    My 2003 404 CMY has 3 tanks---98 gal port, 98 gal starboard, and 120 under the cockpit(AUX). There are 2 "FUEL" switches with corresponding fuel gages, one on each side of the helm----switch on left panel is AUX. Turn it to the left, it shows aft tank level. Switch and gage on right panel is PORT/STARBOARD. Turn switch left, it shows PORT tank level. Turn switch right, it shows STARBOARD tank level. As far as I know(I sold Carvers for 15 years), all of these boats have the same setup, from the 1994 390 CMY, to the newer 400 CMY, to the final version, the 404 CMY. If not set up like this, something must have been changed or something doesn't work properly anymore and needs repair. I hope this helps. Cheers.