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Changing Duramax Fuel Filter

Discussion in 'Do It Yourself Articles - How To's & Product Revie' started by RI Chevy Silveradoman, May 3, 2008.

  1. RI Chevy Silveradoman

    RI Chevy Silveradoman At your service Staff Member Moderator

    May 3, 2008
    Rhode Island
    Instructions for changing a fuel filter in a Duramax!

    Changing Fuel Filter From Top

    1. Disconnect both batteries [Not Mandatory]. I don't.
    2. Remove passenger side battery from truck, you can use it for a step if you want to [Not Mandatory] I don't. Remove the plastic Air Intake hose.
    3. Reach in and disconnect water in fuel light wiring.
    4. Using a rubber or Nylon strap filter wrench, unscrew filter.
    5. Remove water in fuel sender.
    6. Reinstall water in fuel sender in new filter using new o-ring [Lube with engine oil].
    7. Slip new filter assembly down next to battery tray and install using a new large o-ring [Lube with engine oil].
    8. Tighten new fuel filter using filter strap wrench.
    9. Reinstall water in fuel wiring.
    10. Reinstall battery and reconnect cables. Reinstall air intake tube.
    11. Remove or loosen plastic bleeder screw in top of fuel filter housing.
    12. Push down on filter pump several times to prime the fuel filter until fuel comes out of bleeder hole and tighten plastic bleeder screw.
    13. Pour soapy water on filter housing to get rid of any spilled diesel.
    14. Start engine and check for leaks.

    You can also change the fuel filter by removing the black plastic fender liner and going in fender. It gives you a little more room. Some people do this when they rotate their tires and already have the wheel removed.
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2011
  2. ZF6 MAN

    ZF6 MAN The Unwritten rule

    May 3, 2008
    Battery removal is not necessary from what I have seen but if you require more room it is much easier to remove than the inner fender liner. Thanks for the write up
  3. Drew

    Drew <font color=blue>Capa'n</font>

    Feb 10, 2008
    Dayton Ohio Area
    I dont take my battery out either. I bent the A/C lines just enough to get it to fit in from top.
  4. Chromer

    Chromer Ain't no Recruit

    May 10, 2008
    Northern Illinois
    It should be noted that the LMM's are almost friggin' impossible to do from the top. It's a breeze pulling inner fender
  5. 03demax

    03demax New Member

    May 7, 2008
    I just cut a slit in the fender well liner right where the filter is. I just spread it and access the filter. works nice.
  6. BudTX

    BudTX Edjumacated Redneck

    I don't remember this step. What hose are you referring to?
  7. jmac

    jmac Recruit

    May 7, 2008
    Humboldt IL.
    Me too.But it is still a pain.If you have not done it before you have to push up pretty hard on the filter to get it to scew on.It is a must to lube up the center o-ring.The first time took me almost a hour.(and alot of swearing)the second time took about 20min.(And just a little swearing) .
  8. Mad Maxx

    Mad Maxx See, what had happened was... Staff Member Moderator

    May 3, 2008
    Long Island, NY
    I just pull the Battery and go from there. Gives me enough room to work with the Filter Wrench.
  9. jrkrace

    jrkrace Recruit

    May 9, 2008
    I let the filter drop into a ziplock bag, seal it up, drop it to the frame and just pull the bottom of the liner enough to get the whole mess out. Merchants filter head spacer also makes it a lot easier to slip the wrench onto the filter.
  10. RI Chevy Silveradoman

    RI Chevy Silveradoman At your service Staff Member Moderator

    May 3, 2008
    Rhode Island
    Plastic air intake tube


    I remove the big black plastic intake tube that goes from the air filter to the intake. It gives you a little more room to move around in there! :thumbsup:
  11. KYLE@XDP

    KYLE@XDP can help you w/ anything

    May 9, 2008
    i also just cut a small section out of the wheel well liner. it doesn't cause any more mess in the engine compartment and i can change the filter w/ just a cresent wrench to remove the sensor, in about 15min.
  12. 01duramax6spd

    01duramax6spd Recruit

    May 6, 2008
    I've gotten good at this due to being on the road a lot but for me it takes a filter wrench,visegrip, and a screwdriver and 5 minutes. I change then about every 10K or when I get a low rail pressure code.
    I remember the first time I did one it took an hour. It was 20 degrees outside and the wind was blowing 30mph and we had no choice cause Dads D-Max wouldn't run speed.
    Last edited: May 22, 2008
  13. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 Just a speck on the wall

    All it took for me was on the coldest night in Feb. 2008 while we were out pushing snow and my buddy's truck wouldn't run worth a darn due to a plugged fuel filter. (Lucky I carry extra filters being 2:00am and about 1 hour from home)

    After changing his fuel filter when it was so cold that we had to take turns working and then warming our hands on the exuast of my truck, I made this up the next day.

    There is no need to remove or loosen or touch anything but the fiter.

    All you do is reach down and unplug the water sensor, put wiring through the middle of the filter wrench and remove the whole thing at once.

    All it is is a filter wrench shortened and I welded a piece of 1/2 square stock, then you put a 1/2 extension on that and run the whole thing with a box end wrench on the top.

    Attached Files:

  14. got-h2o

    got-h2o HillBilly Pimp

    May 10, 2008
    NW Indiana
    Man Phil, you are a pimp.

    I'd patent that baby before posting it on the internet!!! Nice work.
  15. SEA04DMAX

    SEA04DMAX Recruit

    May 5, 2008
    The filter head spacer helps alot, Merchant sells them but i made mine.
  16. WhitetailAddict

    WhitetailAddict Recruit

    May 9, 2008
    Central Pennsylvania
    I found a 1 1/2" 12-point socket and a pair of channellocks work well for removing a worn water-in-fuel sensor.
  17. 921500Z71

    921500Z71 New Member

    May 26, 2008
    Lawrence, Ks
    I have something similar to what phil has just it has a 3/8" square hole that is perfect for a 12" extension to fit into. No need to remove inner fender or cut a slit in it. First time i did it, takin it off took about 5 minutes and then getting it back on without it lubed up took about 10 minutes before i said man this thing needs some lube. After some lubrication it was another 5 minutes and hook everything back up and prime and voila my first filter change on my dmax went without anything getting torn up.
  18. 12ga diesel

    12ga diesel Jack of all, Master of none

    May 4, 2008
    I just finished changing my fuel filter. It was my first time doing it myself, and decided to leave the battery in and removed the middle part of the air intake tube. For myself, that seemed to be the easiest way. Tried to go thru the wheel well, but I had the tire on so I couldn't get the best access. Thanks for the write up.
  19. MorganHorse

    MorganHorse New Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    Thermopolis WY
    I have fought this battle with the difficulty of changing the fuel filter so many times, I am sick of it. I had the same trouble on a 2003 that I have on this 2007 Chevy Duramax. Changing these filters should be easy but they have made it nigh impossible except to pull the wheel and removed the fender housing. If you are out on the road and get a bad batch of fuel, and it happens, you are stuck if you try and come up through the top, it just won't work. They guy/gal that designs these things should have to change the fuel filter and they would make it different. I Have been working in my head what to do and here is what I did today. I made sure I had this stuff on hand. Had to order the ferrels but got the tubeing locally. Unbolted the fuel filter from the bracket on the engine. Two bolts, 12 metric head. Made a riser from heavy iron stock raising the filter as high as I could up against the large air intake tube. It is about 5 inches higher now. Bolted the bracket to the engine, and bolted the fuel filter housing to the bracket I made. Used brass double ended ferrels and fuel rubber tubeing to extend the lines and hooked it all back up. Had to move the "check oil" tube which was easy and pushed the 'check transmission" tube over a little which was also easy. Now it is high enough that you can reach in and unscrew the filter, replace it and take it right out--from the top! Hooking up the wires to the bottom water sensor is easy too, as it is all right there.
  20. RI Chevy Silveradoman

    RI Chevy Silveradoman At your service Staff Member Moderator

    May 3, 2008
    Rhode Island
    Nice. Do you have any photos of the engine compartment to share? There are also a few other options that you can do today, that were not available back when this was written. There is an adapter with a spin on filter that you can get that makes things easy. It eliminates the OEM filter altogether.

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