How To Clean A Motorcycle Gas Tank With Simple Tools
How to clean a motorcycle gas tank just got easier with the right methods. You will no longer have to worry about fuel contamination anymore.
If you own a motorcycle, you know very well just how much it could cost you to have a fuel pump replacement. That is not something you would want to experience when owning a motorcycle. You have to think about some of the issues that can lead to its failure. One of them would be having a dirty gas tank.
For a motorcycle that you use for daily use to commute to work and back home, it is likely to develop some dirt in the gas tank. Things such as sediments, debris and rust are likely to find their way into the gas tank. You will have to think about the removal of such contaminants that will affect fuel quality.
With cleaning now in your mind, you have to think of ways on how to clean a motorcycle gas tank. A couple of methods exist, we get to look at a few and their applications. These methods are cheap, so do not worry about spending much on the cleaning process.
Method 1: Inspection And Cleaning Of The Gas Tank
The fuel tank is supposed to last a lifetime of the motorcycle, so it is the reason you have to take good care of it. Without the proper maintenance, you might just end up having to replace the whole fuel tank, which is often expensive.
With this method, anyone can check for any signs of corrosion and dirt in the gas tank before cleaning.
What You Will Need
- Cleaning solution
- Socket set
Step 1: Inspect The Gas Tank
Before you can decide whether the tank needs cleaning or not, some inspection has to be done. This is where the flashlight comes in handy. Make sure you are wearing your goggles when poking around the fuel tank.
With your flashlight, check the interior of the gas tank to see if it is clean. You are likely to see some debris or rust in the fuel tank if it has been a while since the last cleanup.
It is not just about the interior, also check the exterior to see if the tank has been spared by the road damage. Sometimes you might end with a tank more damaged on the outside than inside. Which is commonly the case.
Step 2: Unscrew The Gas Tank
Once you have seen the condition of the gas tank, you would commonly understand whether to clean it or not. At this point, we assume it needs some cleaning, so you have to unscrew it from its place for the process to start.
It would always be easier to clean the gas tank if it is not still on the motorcycle. Using the socket set, use the appropriate tools to remove the gas tank from the motorcycle. Do it carefully, especially if you have a lot of fuel still in it.
Step 3: Drain The Tank
Once you have removed the tank from the motorcycle, it is the time that you removed all the fuel in it before you can start with the cleaning. Drain the fuel into an approved container so that you can still be able to reuse the same fuel later on after cleaning is done.
Some containers for storing fuel would come with a filter that helps eliminate the debris and rust. The next time you top up the fuel tank using the same fuel, it will not have any issues such as the debris and rust.
Step 4: Start With The Outside
It is common to find that the exterior of the gas tank would not always be clean. It would need some work before you can start cleaning the interior. Since the surface would always be exposed, you can expect to find some surface rust and debris.
With your cleaning solution and brush, it should be easy to handle the dirt on the exterior of the gas tank. With a few minutes of scrubbing and rinsing, you should now have a clean exterior. It would be time now to tackle the dreadful interior.
Step 5: Clean And Flush The Tank With Water
Water is often the best cleaning agent you can get to use in your gas tank. The work of the water would be to remove some of the loose debris and sediments before you get to clean the rust later.
Pour enough water into the tank for the cleaning process. You can now swish the water around in a circular motion to dislodge as many debris and surface rust as possible. The debris will now settle at the bottom once you stop swirling the gas tank.
Proceed to pour these contents in a container, and you will see most of the debris come out with the water. Tap at the bottom of the tank to remove any remaining debris inside.
Step 6: Use A Cleaning Solution Of Your Choice
For the cleaning solution, it can vary from homemade to commercial. The trick is to ensure you get the right cleaning solution at all times. For this case, we can use dish soap and water. The resulting cleaning solution will help in removing rust and other sediments from the tank.
It might get tricky cleaning the modern fuel tanks as they might have internal baffling as a way of reducing the rocking motion. To remove the debris easily, you will have to clean the tank with high-pressure soap water.
That pressure combined with the cleaning capabilities of soap, you can have most of the debris removed. You should rinse the tank with clean water to make sure that no excess soap stays in the gas tank.
Step 7: Drying
It would only be logical if you let the tank to dry before you can install it back in its position. There are many ways of drying the tank. You could leave it out in the summer sun or use compressed air to dry it fully. You can always opt for the compressed air method if the sun is not showing up anytime soon such as the winter.
Step 8: Reinstallation
Before you can reinstall the gas tank, a last inspection is often recommended. You will be checking for any serious signs of rust or leaks. With your flashlight, check to see if the interior is now in a better condition than when you first took it out of the motorcycle.
If the tank shows that the damage is excess, the best thing to do is just replace it. It might work for a while, but it would often end up being a disaster.
If everything is okay, you can easily bolt it back into position using the socket set.
Check out this video for more tips on how to clean a motorcycle gas tank:
Method 2: Using Electrolytic Solution
This method is important for removing rust from the interior of a gas tank. If you were looking for an alternative method, then this should be it.
What You Will Need
- A batterry charger
- Scap wood
- Sacrificial anode made of steel
- Washing soda
- Step 2
- step 3
- step 4
How To Handle The Sacrificial Anode
The sacrificial anode does not have to come into contact at all with the gas tank. The sacrificial anode is not a special rod; it can be any rod made of steel. You can get one of those used to support plants and use it for this project.
The anode will have to be suspended in the tank for it to be effective. It is where we use the scrap wood to hold the rod in position.
Preparing The Electrolytic Solution
This solution also has nothing much special about it. It is just basic stuff we use at home. To prepare the solution, you need to pour enough water into the bucket just enough that would fill the gas tank.
Add the washing soda and soap in the right amounts and stir thoroughly. Once the solution is ready, you can top it off in the tank.
Step 3: Hook It Up To A Battery
Dip the sacrificial anode into the tank with the solution and connect it to the positive terminal of the battery. The negative terminal can be connected to the side of the tank. You will be making the connection using the battery charger, so at this point you have to turn it on. Leave the setup for about 10 hours.
Rust Is Removed
As much as it is supposed to take 10 hours, you are to keep on having a check-in every hour. You will have to remove the anode from the tank and remove the accumulated rust on it. After cleaning, you get to place the anode back in position and turn on the charger again.
Once the rust is removed, you can now rinse your tank to remove the soapy water.
And below is a video with some tips on handling this procedure
The two methods seem easy enough for anyone looking to make the best out of cleaning a motorcycle gas tank. As you can see, they can all be done at home without much need of a garage. This could save you a lot of money if do it yourself at home.
You can always post some comments of what you think about the guide and also share the same article with your friends too on social media.