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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I've got a gasoline 3500 PM and am installing a diesel fuel tank under the vehicle to use for the Espar heater I plan to install. I'm trying to maximize stealth with this build, and would therefore really like to be able to avoid cutting an additional hole in the side of the van for an extra fill location.

Here's my idea. Since I have the gas model, the DEF fill port is empty. Instead, the rubber sheeting just covers the empty slot beneath the gasoline fill port. I'd love to install a diesel fill location here, and keep everything nice and clean within the factory compartment.

Has anyone tried this in the past? Any better ideas out there? Input is much appreciated here.

Thanks!
 

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Depending on the altitude for a gas version, you could be throwing your money away. Burners that soot up and can't be cleaned will cost you $400.00 to replace. Go the cheap Chinese diesel at 1/5 the initial cost. Carry a spare burner - 20.00?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I've used a propex HS200 heater in my previous build, but really looking to get away from propane. I really like the Espar D2 Airtronic heaters, have installed them in other vans (already diesel) and really appreciate the lower maintenance of a diesel heater relative to a gas fired option like the webasto. I'm sure they're just fine, just not my preference at this point.

I also really like that the Espar has the built in altitude sensing module to adjust the mix, as I'll regularly travel between sea level and around 8,000 feet.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just wanted to post an update to this. After a bunch of research into undermounting fuel tanks, materials for fuel lines, and dialing in the right sizes for a compatible filler neck and fill hosing, I spent last night installing the filler neck, running the first bit of hosing, and staging the tank for installation sometime soon (selling my old van this weekend so taking some time to clean it up/get it ready for its new home).

I really love the way this is coming together so far though. More than anything, I appreciate how easy it's going to be to get this filled, rather than having to take an aux tank out of the van interior or worrying about running the main fuel tank too low.

Diesel filler neck positioned in empty DEF location
Diesel filler neck installed in empty DEF location
Filler hose under chasis through empty DEF chase
 

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Very neat. When you get it all figured out how about posting the product list and/or offering a kit?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Very neat. When you get it all figured out how about posting the product list and/or offering a kit?
That's the plan! Will probably post another time or two along the way here with progress updates, but eventually I'll have a walk-through and parts list available.
 

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i used the chinese diesel heater and mounted the tank that came with it inside. actually i paid reds custom design to do my install
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Looks like that came out nice and clean! For me, I had a few criteria which led me away from something like this:
  1. Long-term climbing/skiing/mountaineering trips have me parked in an area for a week or more at a time, so I wanted to be able to carry a sizeable amount of fuel stored up, conservatively designed to be able to run the heater continuously for the whole time. For me, I determined this would require somewhere between 5-10 gallons.
  2. I really didn't want to have to open up the van to fill the aux tank, and didn't want to mess with having a separate canister to act as a transfer tank.
  3. After having a propane-fired heater in my last build (Propex HS2000), I hated how much space the propane tanks took up inside the van. With an enclosure under the bed, I lost about a third of the available storage down there. This won't impact my storage space at all and will only extend as low as the muffler, so no loss of clearance either!
Totally a matter of preference. I also couldn't resist trying something like this that I haven't seen done on any other vans as well....
 

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Totally a matter of preference. I also couldn't resist trying something like this that I haven't seen done on any other vans as well....
Actually it was done on a Transit awhile back, but IMO his install turn into a money pit by having a custom tank built. His glad it's done, but won't recommend doing it his way. For Transit owners he offer this, "Word to the curious - be aware that this mod is very labor intensive".

I think for the Promaster it's a more straight forward mod as your showing.

Looking forward to your mod.
 

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Looks like that came out nice and clean! For me, I had a few criteria which led me away from something like this:
  1. Long-term climbing/skiing/mountaineering trips have me parked in an area for a week or more at a time, so I wanted to be able to carry a sizeable amount of fuel stored up, conservatively designed to be able to run the heater continuously for the whole time. For me, I determined this would require somewhere between 5-10 gallons.
  2. I really didn't want to have to open up the van to fill the aux tank, and didn't want to mess with having a separate canister to act as a transfer tank.
  3. After having a propane-fired heater in my last build (Propex HS2000), I hated how much space the propane tanks took up inside the van. With an enclosure under the bed, I lost about a third of the available storage down there. This won't impact my storage space at all and will only extend as low as the muffler, so no loss of clearance either!
Totally a matter of preference. I also couldn't resist trying something like this that I haven't seen done on any other vans as well....
10 liters last me about a week.
 

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I installed mine inside in a sealed (gasket) plywood box. After 2 days driving we couldn't sleep because of the diesel smell. No matter how hard you try the diesel smell penetrates everything. We were on vacation, so I ended up pouring cat litter inside the box to absorb as much as possible the smell. I will now install it outside or simply using a small 5 L in the engine compartment as someone else did in this forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Just putting another update here on the progress of this install. I keep pushing this down the priority list in favor of continuing the interior build, but with the cold coming, it's time to get this checked off.

Welded up some custom brackets yesterday and mounted my 7 gallon auxiliary tank below the van. Tank fits pretty **** perfectly right between the spare tire and rear axle. Really happy with the way this came out. The assembly hangs a total of 12.5" below the underside of the floor, with about 4-5" still clear from the bottom of the rear axle. Now that the tank is in place, I can order the final length of fill hose to connect to the filler neck I had previously installed and it'll be all set! Standard heater installation beneath the passenger seat will be sometime this week, and hopefully everything will be up and running by the weekend!

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