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Old 06-04-2011, 10:43   #1
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Cleaning Diesel Tank

I have pumped out most of the old diesel in my 110 gallon tank, I am left with quite a bit of sludge and maybe half a gallon of diesel. The baffles makes it impossible to reach all the tank through the inspection cover.
Any suggestions on how the get all the crude out?
Bazzer
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Old 06-04-2011, 11:24   #2
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Try a hand pump with a small diameter tube attached and snake it through the baffles to the low point.

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Old 06-04-2011, 11:28   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SabreKai
Try a hand pump with a small diameter tube attached and snake it through the baffles to the low point.

Sabre
That might work for the small amount of diesel left, but the sludge, which I think is emulsified diesel and water is stuck to the sides if the tank! Short of getting the baffles out I can see no easy solution
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Old 06-04-2011, 14:42   #4
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Install new inspection covers, one for each compartment?
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Old 06-04-2011, 14:47   #5
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Install new inspection covers, one for each compartment?
Unfortunately in order to install a second hatch I would have to remove much of the teak furniture, something I would prefer not to do. I am considering washing out with a detergent of some kind
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Old 06-04-2011, 14:58   #6
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Careful, you may end up like the old woman who swallowed a mouse to catch a fly.

How do you get the soap out, without any residue?
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Old 06-04-2011, 15:01   #7
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Careful, you may end up like the old woman who swallowed a mouse to catch a fly.

How do you get the soap out, without any residue?
Suck it out with a pump and take it to be recycled. No flies, just a bloody great dirty tank
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Old 06-04-2011, 15:06   #8
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Depending on the tank material caustic soda does a good job of dissolving just about anything. It can be hazardous to work with if you are unfamiliar with it.
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Old 06-04-2011, 16:11   #9
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by bazzer View Post
I have pumped out most of the old diesel in my 110 gallon tank, I am left with quite a bit of sludge and maybe half a gallon of diesel. The baffles makes it impossible to reach all the tank through the inspection cover.
Any suggestions on how the get all the crude out?
Bazzer
You might try the technique I used when I drained my fuel tank:
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: REMOVING DIESEL FROM THE FUEL TANK
As shown I just went to an auto store and bought a fitting the fit the fuel tube and sucked the fuel from there. The Topsider also comes with a thin tube that is even a smaller than the fuel pickup tube in the tank if you want to get into the corner but, I found that I really did not need it.
For cleaning I was planning on using full strength Simple Green sprayed around the inside of the tank through the inspection port and sucked up through the fuel pick up. Floowed by a couple of water rinses. Have not tried that yet though.
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Old 06-04-2011, 16:22   #10
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Best way to clean the sludge out is to scoop it out with something. You will also find the scraping the sides of the tank with and old credit card or some other plastic scraper will do a fine job. After scraping you can wipe up all the remaining sludge with paper towels and simple green. You really need to be able to get to all parts of the tank in order to do a proper cleaning job.
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Old 06-04-2011, 16:29   #11
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

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Originally Posted by RainDog View Post
Install new inspection covers, one for each compartment?
I have under floor diesel tanks built in as part of the structure of the vessel.
The tank top is what you walk on, so it is well baffled for support.

I would have to add 52 inspection ports to access each baffle

Religious fuel polishing is what I hope will solve any issues
Walbro or similar fuel pumps and 4 x 500fg knockoffs cycling, cycling,cycling
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Old 06-04-2011, 20:15   #12
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

Installing clean out holes is not difficult.

Religious fuel polishing will not get the crud off the walls of the tank.

Remove the furniture and do the job.

Because the %^$& will hit the fan in a heavy sea and you start fouling filters.....as they say in Louisiana....I Garrrrontee it!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 06-04-2011, 20:30   #13
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

I had a friend who reported good results using gasoline in a garden sprayer to dissolve the gunk inside his fuel tank. He was able to suck out the gas and junk leaving behind a clean tank. Of course, this is just how he relayed the story to me so it's all second hand.
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Old 06-04-2011, 22:33   #14
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

if the water in a fuel tank - it will effect the engine lifespan as well !
so get it clean asap !
if u self don't know how, - ask the professionals for help....

but the golden rule:

clean tank once annually!
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Old 06-04-2011, 22:39   #15
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Re: Cleaning diesel tank

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Originally Posted by Prerequisite View Post
I had a friend who reported good results using gasoline in a garden sprayer to dissolve the gunk inside his fuel tank. He was able to suck out the gas and junk leaving behind a clean tank. Of course, this is just how he relayed the story to me so it's all second hand.
then he has open the engine after and seen something like that :

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