Cheap corroded fuel line repair or replacement

Discussion in '1998 - 2002 Toyota Corolla' started by Bill Patterson, Aug 9, 2015.

  1. Bill Patterson

    Bill Patterson New Member

    I've got a 2000 Corolla with a leaking, corroded fuel line(s)? My gas mileage on local driving has gone down to half what it had been, while on long highway speed drives, it is only down by about ten percent.

    When I brought the car to my local garage for the annual state inspection, I passed the safety part but was told that the pollution emissions test could not be made until I got the "Check Engine" light to go out, and that a Toyota dealer would be needed to do that.

    I then brought the car to a metropolitan mega-dealership, where I was told that the fuel lines were leaking and that it would cost me $2,030 to have them replace them, but even if I had them do that, there was no guarantee that the car would pass the emissions test, just that it could then be tested. They were also "nice" enough to provide me with a list of other things they had found wrong with my car, and while they didn't price their repair cost, it would easily be another two thousand dollars.

    The price of the fuel line replacement/repair broke down into $1,850 for parts and $180 for labor, and so I wouldn't be saving much of anything if I bought the parts from them and did the installation myself. I have also been told that there are no aftermarket Toyota stainless steel fuel lines available and that making my own would surely entail more work than it was worth.

    There is absolutely positively no way that I am going to pay $2,000 to repair a car that will only be worth $2,000 after the repair is completed. What would like to know is"

    1) If I determine that only one of the lines is leaking, should I be able to get a dealer to replace just that one line?

    2) If they won't do it, will Toyota sell me just one line, rather than a complete set?

    3) If I replace the leaking line or lines myself, will I still need to have a dealer do something to reset the Check Engine light circuit, or will the light simply not come on if I restart the repaired vehicle with no fuel leakage taking place, and most importantly,

    4) Is there any cheapskate, inferior repair I can do, like replacing a leaking section with a repair piece, or perhaps concocting some kind of epoxy-filled tubular encasement perhaps either using a fiberglass wrap or even a copper or plated steel wrap that I would solder closed to give backing strength to the epoxy?

    And finally, to aid me in my own inspection, can anyone direct me to an on-line drawing of the fuel lines? I am a "carburetor age" guy who only knows the whereabouts of the line that goes from an engine's external fuel pump, to the fuel filter (on Ford's, we used to punch a hole through them when they got clogged), and then into the carburetor.
     
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  3. Digger

    Digger New Member

    Buy them from a salvage (junk) yard. Here in sunny & dry CA we don't have the rust and corrosion problems from the snow and salt and stuff lasts a very long time. Shipping would certainly be a fraction of the quoted cost.
     
  4. scottfelsen

    scottfelsen New Member

    making a fuel line is not difficult either. For 2 grand... I would lean how to make them.
     
  5. OP
    Bill Patterson

    Bill Patterson New Member

    I finally jacked up the car and took a look. The leak is in the left-most line (left meaning driver's side), to the rear, where it curves up from its "underbelly" path and goes into a flexible line. It was getting dark and was cold, so I didn't look any further. What is to stop me from either bandage wrapping that short stretch with fiberglass, using steel-embedded epoxy, or for that matter, getting another foot or two of the flexible line, cutting off the last foot or so of the corroded steel line, and replacing the bad section that way?
     
  6. OP
    Bill Patterson

    Bill Patterson New Member

    I scraped the leaking section of the fuel line clean, and found that there were two pinhole leaks, nearly directly opposite one another. Unfortunately, I was not able to get the fuel drained completely just by letting it leak out, and when I tried to apply epoxy putty, the gasoline simply dissolved it, so I then went to my nearby AutoZone and bought a short piece of 5/16" pressurized fuel hose and a pack of four hose clamps, and I cut a piece about 1-1/2" long and slit it lengthwise and wrapped the leaking section with it and then muckled the four clamps onto it, and that stopped the leak cold turkey. The temperature was 50 degrees and dropping, but it will peak at 64 degrees Friday, and I might get daring and do a better repair then... or I might not bother if no leaking has developed.
     
  7. engineerpilotdude

    engineerpilotdude New Member

    I know this is hella old, but how did it turn out? I think I have the same problem.
     
  8. RUSTBUCKET

    RUSTBUCKET New Member

    Patching it with a rubber hose will not last very long due to high pressure found in fuel injected engines.You should ask a mechanic to replace your leaking line.
     
    engineerpilotdude likes this.
  9. engineerpilotdude

    engineerpilotdude New Member

    Thanks for responding. I got a good look underneath, and it turns out it’s actually leaking from the gas tank where the fuel filler is connected to the tank via a flexible hose. I’m going to try the JB Weld they make for gas tanks with the fiberglass sheet, if that doesn’t work I’ll get a new tank installed. Might attempt it myself, but I’ll ask the dealer for an estimate to see if it’s worth the trouble.
     
  10. RUSTBUCKET

    RUSTBUCKET New Member

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