How to Stop a Fog Machine from Leaking

When it comes to creating fog for a basic yard haunt, the standard weapon of choice is the “Fog Machine” created by Gemmy.  Although the packaging may differ from store to store, this workhorse is known by its basic boxy design and it’s ability to create a large amount of fog for a very reasonable price. Each year, however, there is one running complaint about the Gemmy Fog Machine: the darn thing drips Fog Juice over the place. For years haunters have had to plan their layouts around this prop’s leaking.  This year, we are pleased to bring you the news that there is a solution.

WARNING: To fix the problem, you must remove the top cover of the machine and tinker with the insides. This totally voids the manufacturer warranty, and, if you don’t know what you’re doing, could result in someone getting hurt. So, if you decide to undertake these modifications, please note that you are doing so at your own risk.

OK, now that I’ve scared off the people who probably shouldn’t be playing with the guts of the machine anyway, let’s get down to business. The first step is to remove the cover.  As you may have noticed, the screws holding the cover on can’t be removed with your standard flat or phillips head screwdriver.  These are torx screws and you’ll need a torx bit to remove them.  Thankfully a set of torx bits in assorted sizes can be picked up at most auto parts stores.

Torx Bit and Screw

Now that you’ve got the cover off, locate the Fog Juice reservoir and the plastic tube leading out of it.  The ends of this tube, which are held on with tiny zip ties, are the points at which the machine leaks.  Remove the tube.  If you have an OLD style machine (without the remote control), be careful with the fluid level sensor wires on the side of the reservoir.  Odds are that you’ll be able to slide the tube off of its connections without much effort.  There may be some silicone residue that should be removed.

Inside "Old" Fog Machine

At this point, take a look at your tube.  There should be a small mesh filter jammed inside.  This filter protects the pump from any foreign sediment that may end up in the Fog Juice.  As a result, it also slows down the flow of Fog Juice into the heater.  For our machine, we chose to remove the filter to increase our output of fog.  We’ve got a large graveyard, and we need every bit of fog we can get.

Fog Machine Filter

Reattaching the tube is as simple as sliding it back into place and fastening it with a few zip ties.  For best results, put two zip ties on each end.  For older style machines, it may only be possible to get one tie on the reservoir end.  You want to get the zip ties as tight as possible, so, if you have a zip tie gun, use it.  Then, fill the reservoir up with Fog Juice and check for leaks.

New Zip Ties in Fog Machine

Next, put the top back on and replace all of the screws.  Then, just plug in the machine and fire it up.  In just a few minutes, you should be standing in the middle of a cloud of fog, totally leak free.

Cloud of Fog

Categories: Fog Machine, How To | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “How to Stop a Fog Machine from Leaking

  1. Luc

    Hi, I have a similar fog machine, the gammy fogger machine – 400W (Mini-Silver) with the wired hand held controller.

    I had to clean the inside out and I took pictures of where all the wires plug in except I missed the spot where the power switch and fuse is. I’ve been looking for a picture of the inside of one of the machines and found nothing close other than your pictures. Do you think you could take a picture of that area for me and email it to me? Many thanks.

    • BlackWidow

      I just checked back through the pictures I took that day and unfortunately I don’t have one that shows what you are looking for. If I have an excuse to pull the machine apart again I’ll be certain to take some more detailed pictures.

  2. Crey

    I also had to make a couple of “adjustments” to mine, as I noticed a few days ago (after having it in storage from last year) that it had sprung a leak.
    I located the leak where the nut is attached to the juice tank. It looks like the assembler may have dabbed something around it to make it water tight. The major leak was in the threaded part of it.
    I simply took some canned air and filled the tank up 3/4 of the way and started spraying around all of the connections to the tank.
    Sure enough, when I would spray around that nut, the juice would bubble.
    Put a bit of blue silicone on a toothpick and dabbed it on around the threaded part, and then pressed down around where the silicone was applied as to force it into the threaded area and seal the leak.
    Checked it a few hours later and noticed I still had a bit of a pool in the bottom of the fogger.
    Looked it over again and noticed where the tube connects to the tank wasn’t tight.
    I took a pair of blunt ended pliers and grabbed on to the bit of wire tie that was left and gave it a good tug.
    This tightened up the wire tie a good 3 or 4 clicks tighter than it was.
    I tried to twist it again, no go. Good and tight now.
    Tested it out, working fine.
    Filled the tank up full and after sitting for a day, no more leaks!

    now, I’ll have to check on that “filter” thing you were talking about… I was unaware there was a filter in that hose.
    If taking that out will double the output of fog, then I’ve got to do that.
    It puts out a good amount, but that would be perfect!

    Thanks!!

    • BlackWidow

      The filter in the tube surprised me too. I was very happy with the output after removing it. I’m not sure if it’s worth pulling everything apart again to get to it, but if you’re already in there, might as well pull it out.

  3. the man

    I have the exact model from walmart. It leaks pretty bad but I can’t get the cover off. I unscrewed all of the screws but the wires are keeping me from lifting it off the base.Can anyone give me some tips to get it off?

  4. jesus

    I have the model with wireless control and the last time i used the fog machine it´s start automatically every time warm up. , without press the remote control or press manually green button. why happen this?

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