Cleaning out a fuel tank

Discussion in 'UK Motorcycles' started by Gavsta, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. Gavsta

    Gavsta Guest

    As subject really.

    I have the tank off the 400, and there is a fair bit of crap inside ot,
    I dont know where from though <shrugs>

    I have the fuel tap off and the cap and want to try and get it clean.

    Can I just hose it out and then leave somewhere warm to dry out or is
    that a bit no-no. I dont really want to fill it with fuel and then drain
    again TBH.


    For the road: GSXR600K1
    For the track: GSXR400GK76A
    For everything else: Citroën Berlingo

    Gavsta, Jan 25, 2009
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  2. Hot water with washing up liquid and a big handful of screws. Block holes,
    shake tank lots, drain, repeat. Rinse well, leave to dry somewhere toasty.
    Mungo \Two Sheds\ Toadfoot, Jan 25, 2009
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  3. Gavsta

    crn Guest

    Could be in danger of developing holes.
    Usually a sign that it has been left standing for a long time and rusted
    on the inside. Add a good mugfull of sharp gravel, block holes, shake
    violently until your arms hurt. Shake out the debris, rinse with petrol,
    dry and then treat with tank sealant to prevent it rusting through in
    the future.
    crn, Jan 25, 2009
  4. Gavsta

    Andy Bonwick Guest

    Fill it with cheap coca-cola (I did wonder whether to say coke) and
    leave to soak. It'll clean all the crap out without the risk of any
    rust pots forming and eventually growing into big holes.

    It's a method that's worked for a couple of people on here so give it
    a go.
    Andy Bonwick, Jan 25, 2009
  5. Gavsta

    Pete Fisher Guest

    Certainly worth a try. It released all sorts of crap from the Forgotten
    Era's Puch Grand Prix 50 tank. I had to give it the full POR-15
    treatment in the end though. TBF, it had been sitting with less than a
    pint of fuel in it inside a very leaky greenhouse[1].

    Even though the fuel was 2-stroke mix the internal rust was epic. Wasn't
    leaking (at the bottom at least), and after treatment certainly doesn't
    now, and not a sign of detritus in the clear fuel filter to catch out
    ancient Dellortos.

    Colas should be enough in Gavsta's scenario I would think.

    [1] Which really must come down before it falls down. Plan A is to
    acquire a box trailer (for duties later in France) for transporting the
    unwanted contents and the results of demolition to the tip, so the
    demolition party I proposed might be back on the agenda.

    | Pete Fisher at Home: |
    | Voxan Roadster Gilera Nordwest * 2 Yamaha WR250Z |
    | Gilera GFR * 2 Moto Morini 2C/375 Morini 350 "Forgotten Error" |
    Pete Fisher, Jan 25, 2009
  6. Gavsta

    Eiron Guest

    Cola of any sort is useless at converting rust.
    Just get some proper phosphoric acid rust treatment and swish it around
    for half an hour.
    It will do much more than cola would in two weeks.
    And cola is so weak that it rusts steel as fast as it de-rusts it.
    You would need to seal it after treatment though.

    Or if all you want to do is clean out the loose stuff, your original
    idea is best.
    Eiron, Jan 25, 2009
  7. Gavsta

    Andy Bonwick Guest

    Obviously those that tried it and found it worked were mistaken.
    Yeah, just pop into Sainsbury and buy it off the shelf.
    Andy Bonwick, Jan 25, 2009
  8. Gavsta

    Gavsta Guest

    Well had a good look inside with a flash light and the inside looks
    pretty clean actually, no rust that I can see.

    I blocked the holes up, filled it with hot soapy water and then got the
    pressure washer and blasted the insides with it.

    Lots of what looked like white paint flecs came out with that???

    Drained all the water out and then blasted it with an airline - then
    squirted about 1/2 tin of WD40 into it and then blasted it again with an

    All good fun, its looks dry enough now, but have left it open and Ill
    leave it a couple of days until refitting.


    For the road: GSXR600K1
    For the track: GSXR400GK76A
    For everything else: Citroën Berlingo

    Gavsta, Jan 25, 2009
  9. Gavsta

    Simon Wilson Guest

    I've tried it on a rusty tank and was disappointed with the results.
    Seems to be a bit of an urban miff? Or they've changed the formula.
    Simon Wilson, Jan 25, 2009
  10. Gavsta

    Eiron Guest

    Nearest Halfords to me - 4.83 miles, open until 5:00pm on a Sunday.
    Nearest Sainsbury's - 4.4 miles, open until 4:00pm on a Sunday.
    One sells a product that will do the job; the other sells soft drinks
    that will not.
    Not the most difficult of choices.
    Eiron, Jan 25, 2009
  11. Gavsta

    Andy Bonwick Guest

    I don't remember seeing a Halfords when I was last on the Isle of Man
    but there might be one somewhere on the island.
    Andy Bonwick, Jan 25, 2009
  12. Gavsta

    Pete Fisher Guest

    I never expected my cola experiment to 'convert' the rust. What it did
    do, was clear some of the dried Bardahl residue and loosen some flaking
    paint to reveal just how bad the rust was, hence cranking up the full
    POR-15, three stage tank sealing kit approach. Soapy water may have been
    just as effective TBF.

    Perhaps it has to be "The Real Thing"? Though Snopes agrees that Cola
    won't hack it for a proper job.
    | Pete Fisher at Home: |
    | Voxan Roadster Gilera Nordwest * 2 Yamaha WR250Z |
    | Gilera GFR * 2 Moto Morini 2C/375 Morini 350 "Forgotten Error" |
    Pete Fisher, Jan 25, 2009
  13. Gavsta

    Eiron Guest

    How many Sainsbury's are there? And how many car spares shops?
    Eiron, Jan 25, 2009
  14. Gavsta

    Andy Bonwick Guest

    Plenty of supermarkets over there that are open late on a Sunday but
    car spares places I'm not sure about. You're the expert so have a look
    and let me know.
    Andy Bonwick, Jan 25, 2009
  15. Gavsta

    geoff Guest

    Any decent central heating merchant should stock a phosphoric acid based
    geoff, Jan 25, 2009
  16. Or, since Gavsta's on the Island, where there be cows, a farmers' supply
    store, where dairy cleaning products contain it, for a fiver a gallon.
    Grimly Curmudgeon, Jan 25, 2009
  17. Gavsta

    Galet Guest

    I've done a treatment with por-15 to my leaky GS500 tank. I'm quite happy with
    the results:

    Galet, Jan 26, 2009
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