VENTED DECK FILLS
Angled Vented Deck Fill Model # 3682
Perko Combination Fuel and Vent Set Model # 1319
Perko Combination Fuel and Vent Set Model # 0541
Seacurefill Fuel Recovery System 1 ½”
Vented Deck Fill Summary
Combination deck fills
and vents, or vented deck fills, literally combine the fuel vent
(that usually vents overboard) with the deck fill. Essentially,
the vent line is redirected into the neck of the fill allowing vented
fuel to return safely to the tank. When these units are installed
at the factory, there is no need for an overboard vent. However,
if you choose to install one of these devices yourself you must
seal off your existing overboard vent so that water does not condense
or siphon into your boat.
your boat doesn't already come with a vented deck fill installed,
be prepared to cut into your deck to accommodate one. It also
must be located away from an area that can get substantially
flooded, as the vent in the cap must breathe air.
You may also have to
cut a slightly larger deck opening to accommodate this larger fixture.
This new unit allows for movement of air into and out of the tank
via the cap and essentially functions as a vent when not refueling.
For this reason, vented deck fills are not air tight, and therefore
are NOT watertight.
and Perko specifically bring this trait to your attention and urge
you not to install this device in a location that can become substantially
flooded or submerged. The Seacurefill device uses your existing
vent and functions somewhat differently so water intrusion is not
a problem with this unit.
special note on installation: Some models require
a ground wire to prevent sparking when a metal fuel nozzle
is inserted. For grounding
requirements please refer to the manufacturer’s
installation instructions for specific details.
ATTWOOD ANGLED VENTED DECK FILL (Model #3682;
retails for $59.99). The Attwood Angled Vented Deck Fill features
a hinged plastic cap and a stainless filler neck with an integral
vent and splash guard to prevent spills. The angled neck of this model
allows for various installation orientations, including an angled
surface. We chose to mount it on a 45 degree angle which allowed for
good visibility to see the internal vent (which is inside the filler
neck) when refueling. This gave us the comfort of looking around the
inserted nozzle for hints that the tank was nearing capacity.
ATTWOOD ANGLED VENTED DECK FILL (Model #3682)
ATTWOOD ANGLED VENTED DECK FILL (Model #3682)-- OPEN
During our mock-up test,
with the nozzle fully inserted and pumping at both 10 gpm and 20
gpm, fuel managed to back up the filler pipe and trigger the auto
shut-off on the pump nozzle too late. At 10 gpm, the splash guard
managed to redirect most of the fuel back into the tank, but at
20 gpm, fuel worked its way past the guard and ended up on our deck.
Since the unit was mounted on a 45 degree angle, the vent was actually
slightly higher than the fill opening and we wondered if this characteristic
contributed to the auto nozzle clicking off too late.
On the plus side, its
built-in plastic splash guard minimized “misting,” which
occurred on other models when vented fuel bounced off the nozzle,
keeping the deck essentially dry until the tank became full. This
unit requires a grounding wire to prevent sparking when a nozzle
is inserted, so please refer to the instructions for safe installation.
The Attwood deck fill and can be ordered through the BoatU.S. and
West Marine catalog sales special orders department.
COMBINATION FILL AND VENT SET (Model #1319;
retails for $20.99). Perko offers many styles of vented fills for
gas, diesel and water. The model we tested was a black plastic deck
fill with a hinged “flip top” opening that did not require
a deck key and was clearly labeled “gas.” Because it
was hinged, the lid could not roll into the water but we did worry
that when open, someone stepping on it could break it. Since this
model is all plastic, no special ground wire was required.
Above: PERKO COMBINATION FILL AND VENT SET (Model #1319)
Above: PERKO COMBINATION FILL AND VENT SET (Model #1319)-- OPEN
Because of its hinged
design, there was no beaded retainer chain for the lid getting in
the way of visibility into the neck of the deck fill. When the fuel
tank was nearly full, we could easily see that the vent was doing
its job by redirecting vented fuel back down the filler neck during
the refueling process. As in other tests, we waited for the auto
shut-off device to disengage. Unfortunately at both 10 gpm and 20
gpm testing, fuel spilled out of the filler neck suddenly just as
the nozzle clicked off and flowed onto the deck. We also found that
the larger nozzle (delivering 20 gpm) did not fit very well in the
deck opening and we experienced slight misting on the deck during
the fueling process as a result of the vented spray hitting the
nozzle and landing on the deck.
unit and other Perko models can be ordered through the BoatU.S. and
West Marine catalog sales special orders department.
FILL AND VENT SET (Model #0541; retails for $28.99). This
Perko product featured a round polished chrome cap and a plastic body.
The cap has a beaded stainless steel retainer chain which is attached
to th e inside of the neck, making a snug fit for the nozzles. The
tight fit blocked our view of the vent, so we couldn’t observe
the venting process as it occurred. Additionally, the tight fit caused
misting on the deck as we noted with other units, especially at the
higher velocity. A ground wire is NOT recommended on this unit because
of its plastic body and the possibility of an electrostatic discharge.
PERKO COMBINATION FILL AND VENT SET (Model#0541)
PERKO COMBINATION FILL AND VENT SET (Model#0541)-- OPEN
United States Coast Guard and the American Boat &
Yacht Council (ABYC) are concerned enough about the possibility
of sparking that as of 2/10/05 they have issued a Coast
Guard Warning & Technical Bulletin for safe installation.
we experienced results similar to the other models previously tested.
At 10 gpm, the tank would suddenly become full and backsplash would
spill out of the deck fill just as the automatic shut-off nozzle
disengaged. And at 20 gpm, even more fuel flowed from the deck fill
and onto our deck. This unit can be ordered through the BoatU.S.
and West Marine catalog sales special orders department.
FUEL RECOVERY SYSTEM (1 ½” Model; retails for
$139.00). The Securefill is a different kind of vented deck fill.
Instead of having an integrated vent, it requires you to permanently
install a new vent fitting in the deck adjacent to your existing
deck fill. It works by redirecting the vented fuel back into the
original deck fill via a piece of clear vinyl tubing that you must
attach temporarily each time you fill up your boat. The concept
is simple - the clear tubing literally allows you to see the venting
process during refueling so you will react and slow down in response
to the rising fuel bubbles.
you must cut a hole in your deck about the same size as your existing
deck fill. You do not have to abandon your existing vent, but below
deck, you will need to fit your existing 5/8” vent tube to
a nipple on the bottom of the unit and add another short section
from the Seacurefill unit to the existing overboard vent. This allows
for the boat’s vent system to breathe and operate normally
when not refueling.
Above: SEACUREFILL FUEL RECOVERY SYSTEM (1 ½”
Above: You do not put fuel in the Securefill unit although
it looks like a regular deck fill. A different color cap is
now offered to prevent potential confusion, especially when
someone else, like dock staff, refuels your boat.
Above: The Seacurefill temporarily bypasses your existing
vent during fueling. It is fully restored after you replace
the cap on the Seacurefill unit and your deckfill.
We tested this
device as we did the other units – at both 10 gpm and 20 gpm
and pumped until the handle clicked off. In a way, this was an unfair
disadvantage since this unit relies on you “seeing”
the venting process so you can react by slowing down. Regardless,
we carried out the test as planned using the standard “control
fill” and found that that this unit allowed the nozzle to
click off just in time (we could see fuel rising in both the clear
tube and fill level) with minimal spilling at 10 gpm. For the 20
gpm delivery, we saw fuel enter the tube but fuel rose too rapidly
for the automatic shut-off nozzle to disengage, spilling out a few
ounces onto the deck. Seacurefill does make a 2” model that
we suspect would better accommodate larger nozzles and higher delivery
speeds. The Seacurefill Fuel Recovery System can be purchased at
BoatU.S. and West Marine stores and through internet and catalog
and Below: The vented deck fill is a good concept, but we
only recommend these products if you use them with caution.
The vented deck fill is a good concept, but we only recommend these
products if you use them with caution. The vented deck fills did not
promote backsplash as much as some of the inline separators did, but
we were surprised by the fuel that found its way onto our decks. In
general, these devices have a slight advantage over the inline separators:
if you move the nozzle over to one side, you may be able to see when
the unit begins to vent into itself and slow your speed of fuel delivery.
The Seacurefill gives the most visible cues since clear tubing allows
you to see precisely when your tank begins to vent, signaling your
tanks are full.
we found that while refueling at 10 gpm, the amount of fuel from
the venting process wasn’t significant enough to trip the
auto shut-off fuel nozzles. Many times, the auto-stop feature disengaged
just as the fuel reached the top of the deck fill, so the spills
were contained to only a few ounces. However, none of the devices
tolerated the high-speed fuel delivery at 20 gpm and sometimes spilled
as much as a cup or more from the deck fill. Fuel would often continue
to gurgle up and onto the deck, even after the nozzle clicked off.
Additionally, because these deck fills have integrated vents, the
nozzle opening was snug which made them prone to misting the deck
with fine droplets of fuel.
As with the
inline separators, we’ve learned you should never rely on
the auto-stop nozzle triggering off in time. You will want to use
an absorbent fuel collar, bib
or pad to catch droplets, but do keep in mind this will restrict
your ability to see what’s happening in and around the vent
area. Also, always fuel slowly as you reach the top of your tanks.