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Why Do Old Ford Trucks Have Two Gas Tanks?

Why Do Old Ford Trucks Have Two Gas Tanks?

Dual gas tanks are an essential part of old Ford trucks to facilitate stored gas. They have small sizes and limited gas carriage according to the dimensions of the pickup truck. 

Why Do Old Ford Trucks Have Two Gas Tanks? Old Ford trucks have two gas tanks for better heavy load towing, work as a reservoir facilitated with a manual switch, and distribute total weight on dual containers. Also, they lower the gas consumption with diverse connections, a quick shift to balance gas volumes with dual pumps, and pipelines for engine and fuel rails. Furthermore, the traditional Ford F150, F250, and F350 have a front gas tank with a capacity of around 17.5 gallons to 24 gallons, and rear tanks have an average capacity of 19.2 gallons to 20 gallons.

Nowadays, these are not common, but you can get this system in your Ford Super Duty trucks with a few modifications or select their old versions.

Towing facilities

Generally, Ford trucks can tow heavy loads with minimum problems. But, it requires more engine power and consumption of gas. 

In such situations, the manufacturers made two gas tanks for providing continuous power for towing the heavyweights.

Also, the gas containers facilitated the engine components for towing different objects. 

Old models of Ford F150, F250, and F350 had significant gas tanks with front and rear capacities. 

Due to double tanks, the load distributes on two gas passages that keep the machinery intact.

Reservoir for emergencies

The dual gas tank system works as a reservoir for emergencies because it has extra gas levels.

In old variants, their engine uses gas from the front container for several hours. 

The low gas level indicates him for switching tank through an internal regulator. In this way, the traditional models never lacked stored gas. 

Also, it provided them a sense of relaxation and improved long-distance traveling without any fear. Moreover, the tanks can store extra gas with the standard size and built-in specifications.

The rear container activates immediately in emergency conditions and provides constant gas to the engine components.

It prevents the wearing and tearing of internal wires, machinery, and fuel pipelines. Moreover, the double fuel pumps are better than a one-pump system.

Both of them work together and support the performance and efficiency of either tank. The only condition is to fill both tanks before leaving because filled tanks have a high tendency for storage.

Distribution of total weight

Ford has stopped making double tank systems and provides one massive container for all functions. The single tank has a specific weight that varies according to the design and gas carrying capacity.

In addition, it increases the total weight of the vehicle and results in challenging parking and storage conditions. 

The Ford manufacturers added dual containers in old models with different weight capacities. Moreover, their collective weight is less than one gas tank.

But, those variants were lightweight and remained unaffected by the gas volumes. Moreover, the weight distribution in two containers makes the Ford trucks controllable with different standard techniques.

Low consumption of gas

According to their design and inner features, both tanks connect with different components. Also, they have separate pipelines for gas flow. 

However, there is a balance pipe that connects both containers. One line connects with the engine through a valve and regulator.

Other pipe joins with the fuel rail and controls the returnable energy.

The engine components consume gas from secondary and front containers simultaneously. It decreases consumption and facilitates improved efficiency of the pickup truck.

It prevents the engine from drying, reduces internal wearing, and provides stability.

Quick switching

The traditional Ford variants have manual controls for the engine components, electric features, and a double gas tank system.

However, switching from one container to another is quick and takes around 4 to 5 seconds. You can check their levels and take preventive measures. 

Shift the front tank state to the rear one and immediately get the required gas for smooth driving engine performance. 

It keeps the driver relaxed in long-distance and off-road traveling conditions. Check the manual of your Ford truck model and access the switch controls. 

Multiple functions

The engine and its electric components require a constant gas supply for standard performance. Therefore, a single container has one fuel pump with a specific pipeline. 

But, dual equipment has two valves and separate pipelines. The system facilitates multiple functions of the engine compartment with improved combustion, smooth drive, and extra miles.

What Ford trucks have two gas tanks?

The old Ford trucks have double tanks with primary and secondary functions. The rear container supports the front container with several gallon capacities.

For example, the 1987 to 1996 Ford F150 models have dual tanks with around 19 gallons to 21 gallons for front and back containers.

Also, 1994 to 1997 Ford F250 variants have a front tank with 17 gallons to 19 gallons. Moreover, it has rear tanks with around 19 gallons to 20 gallons. 

The older and traditional models of Ford trucks have double tanks with variable primary and secondary tank capacities.

Ford Trucks

Model years

Cab style

Front gas tank capacity

(US Gal)

Rear gas tank capacity

(US Gal)

Ford F150


Super Cab




Regular cab




Long bed




Crew Cab








Extended cab




Regular Cab



Ford F250


Regular Cab




Regular Cab Long bed




Crew cab short bed




Crew Cab



Ford F350


Crew Cab




Long bed Crew Cab




Crew Cab



What is the design and setting of two gas tanks on Ford trucks?

The traditional Ford truck models have dual gas tanks. The primary container has a different level of gas than the secondary tank.

The manufacturer adjusted them in a parallel or series manner for controlled operation. Finally, the series designs merged in the standard fuel line and control system.

For parallel layouts, the fuel pumps operate in two fuel lines. Moreover, a specific assembly works as a sender and handles the switch of gas tanks. 

The filters, screens, and reservoirs are essential components of the truck gas setup. In addition, a selector valve with a shuttle, a valve for checking the gas level, and a pressure regulator exists in the system.

How do the dual gas tanks work?

Ford manufacturers adopted this system to attain better efficiency and drive performance. These gas storage containers work together and facilitate the parts of a truck engine.

They connect with separate pipes that work as a passage and allow the gas to move from one container to other through the pipelines.

Both reservoirs work simultaneously and supply gas to different components. 

According to the standard layout, one pipe provides gas to the engine and its components. 

On the other hand, the second pipe works with the fuel rails. During driving conditions, the truck gets power from the primary gas container. 

However, the rear tank utilizes the consumed energy or the primary component. It is a complex activity that facilitates continuous gas to different engine sections.

Ignition provides an input signal to the fuel pump, and it operates throughout the driving conditions. The entire activity continues until the truck stops.

After turning off the ignition, the control module activates and shuts off the fuel pump.

Why did Ford manufacturers stop dual gas tanks?

The latest Ford models lack the double gas tank setup, and manufacturers provide one massive tank with a high capacity.

They inhibited such models due to internal technical problems and engine mechanical issues. The following reasons are primary factors that compelled the Ford manufacturers to stop making two gas tanks.

Leakage problems

Each tank has a separate fuel injector, regulator, and switch. However, the malfunctioning switch and regulating equipment led to leakage problems. 

As a result, the manufacturers stopped these layouts and facilitated standard manual control. 

Frequent refill

People find it better to fill their one gas or fuel tank at a time. But, the distribution of weight, function, and performance of two tanks leads to frequent refill in Ford trucks.

Also, the owner had to take care of the reservoir tank with the specific gas source. The repeated refilling and continuous check resulted in frustration. 

Some consumers complained about the hectic tank filling patterns that resulted in multiple recalls every year.

Faulty gas flow

The front tank receives gas from the back container in needy situations. But, input signals mix due to internal faults of pipelines. 

The faulty gas flow did not fulfill the engine needs and resulted in wearing and internal damages.

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