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Old 24-01-2015, 09:15   #1
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Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

Looking for recommendation for someone in SE Florida or Mujeres who can clean fuel tanks and fuel and do it right. Had it done in Shelter Bay Marina Panama and it made my problems worse.
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Old 26-01-2015, 09:39   #2
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

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Originally Posted by SVNeko View Post
Looking for recommendation for someone in SE Florida or Mujeres who can clean fuel tanks and fuel and do it right. Had it done in Shelter Bay Marina Panama and it made my problems worse.

Neko,
Buy a fuel transfer pump($129.99 Northern Tool) and run it through an inline filter to jerry cans. You can clean the tank yourself, by hand, and refilter fuel back to tank when finished. It will be far better than any commercial vendor can do since they don't manually clean empty tanks but merely recirculate the fuel through the filters. www.northerntool.com/.../product_2006125...

Good luck and good sailing.
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Old 26-01-2015, 10:41   #3
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

I don't have that many jerry jugs. I certainly don't want someone to just filter the fuel. The tanks have to be scrubbed. However, they only have one inspection port and several baffles. So I need the cleaner to use the cycling fuel to blast the crud out of the areas I can't reach.
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Old 26-01-2015, 12:02   #4
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

Are you getting contamination in your filters all the time or in ruff seas

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Old 26-01-2015, 12:25   #5
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

Nek,
What is the capacity of your tank(s)? R
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Old 28-01-2015, 16:08   #6
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

We have 100 gal on one side and 65 on the other. The stuff is clogging the filters in any sea but the real problem is there is so much stuff it clogs the fuel lines as well. I have to blow it out occasionally. I will change the lines when I can but I want to make sure the tanks and fuel are as clean as can be first. I tried to do one tank in Panama but the yard used a hose to squirt the returning fuel around and that hose abraded against the baffles and left strips of rubber in the tank.
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Old 28-01-2015, 18:34   #7
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

IMHO you absolutley need an inspection port for each are that is baffled so that you can get in and scrub off the sludge. It is a difficult job on most boats. I have never heard of someone sticking a wand in and scrubbing baffled off areas. I had to put in two of these Seabuilt - Access Plate Systems for each of my tanks. It was a lot of work but I have not had any problems since I scrubbed the tanks 8 years ago. I think I'm going to run one tank dry and open up the inspection ports to see if it needs to be done again this year.
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Old 29-01-2015, 13:28   #8
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

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Originally Posted by SVNeko View Post
We have 100 gal on one side and 65 on the other. The stuff is clogging the filters in any sea but the real problem is there is so much stuff it clogs the fuel lines as well. I have to blow it out occasionally. I will change the lines when I can but I want to make sure the tanks and fuel are as clean as can be first. I tried to do one tank in Panama but the yard used a hose to squirt the returning fuel around and that hose abraded against the baffles and left strips of rubber in the tank.

Nek,
Do not be intimidated. This is not a difficult job . . . just time consuming. Your tanks should have an access port with a rubber/nitrile gasket underneath the cover. I've never seen a tank without one installed but I'm sure they exist. However, I would transfer as much fuel from the small tank to the large one with the pump described above(hopefully its not full) and then empty the final remains of the smaller tank into jerry cans. Then, clean the tank completely by hand and refill/refilter 60 gallons from your jerry cans/main tank back into the smaller tank. This will be easy if you have no more than 60 gallons in your main tank. Refill the remainder of your main tank into the jerry cans and then clean that tank. I'm certain between borrowing a few tanks from those on the dock and buying some(5 gallon tanks about $33.00) you can keep the costs down. After cleaning your main tank, refilter all fuel back into the tank. I would then change my primary and secondary fuel filter on the engine, add a good diesel treatment to the fuel, and have plenty of spare filters in case you missed something. After that, you'll be fine. A final thought, unless you are planning a long passage with the potential of much motoring, why not use the 60 gallon tank as your primary tank and leave the 100 gallon tank empty? You can leave some treated fuel in the bottom of the tank and then tape/seal the tank vent opening to avoid bacterial growth. Then, when it's needed, added fresh biocide/fuel and you should be fine. Good luck. Stick with it! P.S. A good tool for cleaning the baffles is a scrub brush with a long handle(to loosen the crud) followed by a glass washer with a sponge head to absorb it for removal.
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Old 29-01-2015, 14:15   #9
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

Try a product called 'Fuel Right' as well. I can't tell 100% sure just yet but it seems to have cleaned my keel tank with baffles.

I've got a very small access hatch to a small area. Can barely get a hand in. I cleaned with a water presure cleaner as well as I could but still couldn't get around all the baffles and into the bottom of one end, so I was left with crud (I presume) in one side.

I put 'fuel right' in and then ran the filtering system and the fuel has never been cleaner. In a few days I'm heading out to sea to where it will get rouch and that will be the real test. But so far, this product called 'fuel right' seems to be great.
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Old 29-01-2015, 14:24   #10
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

FUEL RIGHT IS GOOD BUT NOT THR BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK.
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Old 29-01-2015, 14:25   #11
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

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FUEL RIGHT IS GOOD BUT NOT THR BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK.
You really don't need to YELL!
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Old 29-01-2015, 15:11   #12
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

Here's Practical Sailor's review of diesel additives including Fuel Right.
www.practical-sailor.com/issues/37_32/.../Diesel-Additives_11083-1.htm...


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Old 29-01-2015, 15:20   #13
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

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Here's Practical Sailor's review of diesel additives including Fuel Right.

www.practical-sailor.com/issues/37_32/.../Diesel-Additives_11083-1.htm...




That link doesn't seem to work? I'm quite interested in reading it but I don't seem to be able to google it either.
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Old 29-01-2015, 15:26   #14
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

Actually, googling the link instead got me to the page.

Fuel Right, they claim induced corrosion and pitting. Very interesting.

Diesel Additives - Practical Sailor Article
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Old 29-01-2015, 15:36   #15
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaner Needed

I know how the reviews work in magazines. It is products that are offered in the retail market. Your better products are used in more extreme applications.We use products that are used in Bunker fuel ships, Military and power plants. Most additives are on shelf's because of other products that the retailer carries.
Most of these additives will not meet the new Tier 4 engines. The reason is that they emulsify the water into the fuel and the lubricating chemicals that they use.
Most of these engines are very small and can work on most products. When you deal with a 4000HP engine it is very different then what the average boater will ever see.
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