Extended Use Tank For A Honda Generator In 4 Easy Steps

One of the pieces of equipment on our to do list is a generator. We much prefer to anchor out when cruising and at times we can get weathered in for days. During those extended stays we still like coffee in the morning, still have the need to recharge the batteries and like to watch TV. All of this uses power and we have been using our handy Honda 2000 portable generator until we can have a more permanent installation. The Honda will handle most of our power needs, with the exception of the air conditioning system. But that suits us just fine for now. One of the things I don't like to do is to fill the built in tank every day when the generator is in constant use and for long term when charging that batteries it might mean shutting the generator down, filling the fuel tank, and starting it again. It is also hard to fill the tank without spilling gas on the deck, especially if the boats gets waked. So, the need for a remote extended fuel tank. To build one of these only takes a few inexpensive fittings, a fuel tank and about an hour of your time, at the most.




The first thing that I did was to buy a spare cap for the built fuel tank in case I messed up doing this, or if I wanted to run without the extended tank. I found it locally for $15.00 from a Honda dealer in the area. Next was to get all of the miscellaneous parts. We decide on a 3 gallon tank instead of the larger 6 gallon since we don't run the generator that much. We already have a 3 gallon tank for the dinghy outboard so this could also be used as a spare. We also decided we wanted to be able to use the same fuel line as the dinghy outboard so we would not have to carry different fuel lines and again it could do double duty. To accomplish this we would need the attachment fitting that would be the same as on the one on the dinghy tank and on our Johnson Outboard. The two fittings totaled about another $15.00 and then another $4.00 for a brass hose barb. The plastic fuel tank was another $25.00 (please read this review before purchasing Moeller fuel tanks). The assembly was pretty easy.



Step 1.
Remove the inner workings of the fuel cap and drill out the center to fit the connector. Be careful to not drill the hole too large. It should be slightly under sized to allow the fitting to be screwed into the plastic cap.



Step 2.
Fill a thin amount of epoxy around the threaded base of the fuel line fitting inside the cap and screw on the female brass hose barb. Allow the epoxy to dry and them replace the rubber gasket inside the cap. The hose barb may or may not be needed but it makes the connection fitting stay in tight and I beleive it will help to draw the fuel into the generators built in tank.



Step 3.
Install the second connector fitting into the fuel tank.



Step 4.
Fill the fuel tank with gas, fill the generator built in fuel tank with gas, connect the fuel lines and start the generator. Be sure the vent on the fuel tank is open. That's it.

It is very important that the cap be completely sealed. If any air can leak at the cap, the generator will not pull fuel from the extended tank. As the vacuum builds up in the internal fuel tank for the Honda, it will pull fuel from the extended tank. Mark the generator tank so that oil will not get added to it by mistake like the outboard tank. The Honda does not require a fuel/oil mix. The Honda will now run for a much longer time and annoy your neighbors for hours.

There are many variations for doing this, using a 6 gallon tank, installing only hose barbs, putting an inline filter in the fuel line. But the basics are the same. This should work just fine for us until the permanent genset is installed.

16 comments:

  1. Hello folks, Say I am in the Keys and purchased the Honda 2000 a few months ago, it has run near full time since the purchase. I know they make a kit for $119.00 that installs right into the existing filler cap giving you an 8 gallon capacity including the 1.1 on the unit.

    Be well, Curt

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  2. Oppps sorry your pictures and details of the system you made did not load for me before I posted. Yours is a better way of doing it and will probably be much less expensive. You can delete my earlier post and spare me from looking like an idiot if you like.

    Thanks
    Curt

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  3. Curt, I have not seen that kit but I do know that folks make the same kit we have put together and sell them for too much money. The tank size can be anything you want. We chose the smaller tank because we don't use it that often and prefer to turn to fuel over and not let it get old. The 2000 is a great unit and the extended tank has worked perfectly for us. Hope all is well in the Keys. We were based out of there for ten years. Chuck and Susan

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  4. Hey Curt, No problem at all. The blog does load a bit slowly sometimes depending on your connections. Mostly because we have so much stuff on it. Hope everything works out for you. Chuck

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  5. Can't answer for Curt, but our 2000 can't be heard unless you are right next to our boat EXCEPT if it is running under full load. Then it gets a little noisy. Chuck

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  6. Thanks for the info Chuck. Appreicated . Ron

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  7. Guys help me please!!! I have a honda eu3000i and i need to keep generator runing for more then 4,5 hours but ca't do like honda 2000 because its not sucking gas...
    Any ideea???

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    Replies
    1. Sergiu, If you have the extended tank set up according to instructions and it does not pull gas from the tank, then either the fuel line is blocked or the fitting in the cap is not sealed well enough and it is getting air pulled in. This will cause the generator to stop pulling from the extended tank. Chuck

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    2. EU3000i's use gravity, EU1000i and EU2000i's use a fuel pump.

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    3. Seconding what Anonymous said. Only the 1000 and 2000 have fuel pumps. 3000 and up use gravity, and the one purpose built extended run kit out there is not cheap (uses a vacuum draw from the oil plug)

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  8. It also could be that the secondary tank is not vented to allow it to pull the fuel out of. Or, the cap manufacturing could not be airtight as you mentioned.

    Two things have to happen for this to work. The Honda cap has to be made airtight, and the original venting system in the cap has to be disabled AND the secondary tank has to be vented properly so it can evacuate the fuel much like a radiator overflow tank works. (although a radiator tank both sucks and blows as the temperature changes.)

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  9. I do not believe the 3000 has a fuel pump like the 1000/2000 does. The 3000 will have to be tied into the fuel line and gravity fed.

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    Replies
    1. I have no experience with the 3000 so I can't comment on it. The 2000 will run fine whether the tank is above or below the generator. The fittings must be absolutely air tight to work. Chuck

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  10. The 3000 just needs a fuel pump added in order to make it work. There are kits available or find parts yourself. There are YT vids of the kits.

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