Hi - New to the forum. Just purchased a '98 Dodge Ram Van V6 - shorty - 109" wheelbase. So here's my first question. My book says the 109" van capacity is 32 gal. Yesterday (1st fillup) my gauge was at 1/8th (fuel lite flashing) so I filled 'er up ($3.75 gal. ouch) and tank took only 24 gal. I figured it should have taken about 28 gal. So if everything is correct I had 8 gal. in tank with gauge showing 1/8th instead of 4 gal like I thought. No big deal, but on a trip I guess it would be nice to know how many gal remaining in tank when lite starts flashing at 1/8th. So whaddya think? I suppose I could run her out of gas (carry a gallon with me) and start out with an empty tank but don't really want to do that. BTW tank looks original, not replaced.
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My observation so far of these vans is that if the filler neck is before the rear axle then it is the small tank, for the tank is long and narrow. If the filler neck is after rear axle then it will be the 35 gallon tank, for its width is at or near the length.
Besides the filler neck postion another way to quickly tell is by where the spare tire is located. Is it under the van, then small tank, is it inside the van on the right hand side, then the large tank.
An 1/8 of 32 is 4 gallons. Since your gauge was at an 1/8 that accounts for four of the 8 missing gallons. No gauge is designed to work the full range of the tank from empty to full, there is a reserve at each end of the scale. You already have the answer you seek. Since the tank took 24 gallons when the light was flashing, you have 8 gallons left in the tank. This of course doesn't mean the pump will be able to pull all 8 of those gallons out. There are factors which will allow different amounts to be left in the tank under different condition. For example, the pump will pull more fuel out of the tank on a level surface than it will on a hilly surface.