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Old 02-03-2016, 18:02   #1
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Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

I have searched the thread and although there was some discussion back in 2009, I have not seen anything new.

We need to have our two diesel tank cleaned and the fuel polished. Some CF located on the east coast were discussing around $400-$600 per 150 gallons (again back in 2009). I just got a quote back from a company here in the puget sound and they wanted over $1,700 for 160 gallons (80 Gallons in 2 tanks).


I was a little shocked with this price.

So here is the question: Is that the going rate or should we look at other vendors? We are in Everett, WA. Boat is at the Marina with easy access and (2) 10" inspection plates. For $1700 I can buy and install a new dedicated polishing system in the boat and call it a day.

Thoughts or advice is always greatly appreciated?
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Old 02-03-2016, 18:43   #2
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

You can install a fuel polishing system in your boat for less and polish as often as you like. We have a Reverso fuel polishing module installed on our boat.
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Old 02-03-2016, 19:17   #3
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

If you have great access to the inspection ports, maybe just empty the tanks and just get in there and scrub them manually. If it's really easy to do this occasionally, and you don't ever have to worry about taking on fuel from a questionable source, then it's possible that a polishing system may be unneeded complexity.

Just my 0.02. I love my polisher, but would trade it for better access to the tank if I could choose.
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Old 02-03-2016, 19:19   #4
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

What do they do for that kind of money?

Use the Google Custom search area and you should come up with lots of information on fuel polishing/tank cleaning.
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Old 02-03-2016, 19:23   #5
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

Why do you need the tanks cleaned and the fuel polished?
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Old 02-03-2016, 19:56   #6
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

Why not do it yourself? You could do it by hand -- hard work, but definitely doable -- by running the fuel through a funnel with built-in filter, or follow some of the other advice and run through a filtering system aboard (if you have have an electric fuel pump it's ideal, if not the engine can do the work). If you don't have a system already that can clean the fuel, you need to get one. On our boat we have a Racor filtering system that has a very handy valve that allows me to drain a bit of fuel before each start to check for water or any gunk (just like is standard practice in airplanes). It's great and highly recommended.

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Old 03-03-2016, 08:53   #7
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

We’re on Lake Union in Seattle. Someone at our marina rented a unit designed for fuel polishing (some filters and a pump, 110 VAC). Plugged it in next to his boat and let it run.

It was remarkable inexpensive to run… tens of dollars.

Look into that. Sorry not have contact info for you.
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:06   #8
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

I built one using a high volume 12vdc pump and large truck filter/separator mounted on a stand for about $100. Works great did both out boats and a neighbors. Said neighbor then tried to keep it and didn't replace filter canister either, so much for lending it out after that. New filter canister is about $18.
I would suggest go for an install if there's room. For the money paid to have it done you can have a very nice one the way you want it.
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:20   #9
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

I had my tanks cleaned and fuel polished back in 2006 by Denny at PetroClean in Blaine WA prior to 6 years of offshore cruising. The cost was considerably less than what you have been quoted and he had to install new Anchor Access Plates in each of my tanks to clean on the other side of the baffle. The cost is not in the fuel polishing, you can do that yourself. The cost is in evacuating all the fuel from the tank then using some of that fuel through a wand and pressure cleaning the tank. Once you get into an ocean passage the constant motion will shake up any slime buildup in the bottom of your tank and that is what clogs up your fuel filters.

Before Cleaning

After Cleaning and new oval Access Plates added

Denny at PetroClean


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Old 03-03-2016, 09:35   #10
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

Wow, if that's the going rate it's gone up a lot. I would build my own for that. In about 2000 it was $300.
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Old 03-03-2016, 10:47   #11
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

The price quoted to me for removing 25 gallons, polishing, and cleaning the tank was $950. That's here in Honolulu.
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Old 03-03-2016, 12:00   #12
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

Felix Marine [Northwest Environmental Services/same company] in Seattle, quoted me $2000 to pull the fuel, steam clean, and add a liner to the bottom of my 24 gallon tank on my Baba 30. The lovely woman on the phone basically told me that it's the same cost as if I had a 500 gallon tank. I think they just can't fathom my little tank and boat. For that kind of money I can buy a dual Racor setup, and have brand new tank welded up, and still come out ahead. So I've just added pulling the fuel and taking the tank out to my list of things to do.
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Old 03-03-2016, 12:17   #13
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

Once clean, I don't understand the necessity to polish. Keep a good bio additive in the fuel and burn the fuel, try to not let fuel get over a year old and I've never had an issue.
My boat came with a problem, stuff looked like tofu in the tank, clogged up the pickup tube.
Once I got rid of that, I've had no issue since. I know PO just let the boat sit for a long time, without additive in the fuel.
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Old 03-03-2016, 14:10   #14
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

Would anyone be kind enough to share the details of their DIY polishing system that I could build? If it's not to big I might make it a permanent install, if not I'll just make some sort of stand. Thx
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Old 03-03-2016, 14:17   #15
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Re: Fuel Polishing/Cleaning Cost Puget Sound

as far as I'm concerned, 'fuel polishing' is a racket. Here's why I say:

I bought an old boat, and its tanks did not have inspection ports. I believe it's a good idea to have such ports, so I cut some into the tanks, figuring I'd clean the tanks while I'm at it.

What I found was 20-odd years of what looked like thin mud CLINGING to the walls of the tanks. I reached in to clean the tanks, and it took more effort than swishing around some liquid to get the stuff out. Good ol' elbow grease and rags got the job done, and in my opinion that is what it needs.

After the cleaning, I installed a Filter Boss system, and I treat regularly with SeaFoam, and I don't believe I'll have any trouble.
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