How to Clean a Fuel Tank Without Removing It

Removing a fuel tank requires time, and not everyone can do it without professional help. If you need to clean the fuel tank without removing it, you need to follow a series of steps.

Luckily, we have prepared the article that you needed. Here you will find the answers to the question of how to clean your fuel tank without taking it out of place.

Ways To Know If Your Fuel Tank Needs Cleaning

The fuel system is a major component of your car. To check if it needs cleaning, here are the most common warning signs:

  1. If your car sputters at high speeds, the fuel pump may be faulty. This can occur when the fuel pump does not feed the engine properly.
  2. A faulty fuel pump can cause the vehicle to overheat and stall. If this occurs, the pump may need to be replaced.
  3. Compare the pressure your fuel tank should be exerting with the actual pressure of your pump. Anything less than the owner’s manual is incorrect.
  4. Strain can cause your car to show some signs. If you are climbing a hill or trying to accelerate and the engine stalls, the fuel pump is not giving the engine enough gas.
  5. If the car starts consuming more gas than normal. When the fuel pump is going to fail, the engine is getting more fuel. Take note of any significant difference in gas mileage.
  6. If the engine does not start and the ignition or battery is OK, it indicates that the engine starts and revs properly but will not start.

If you detect any of the above indicators, clean the fuel pump and filter.

Ways To Clean A Fuel Tank Without Removing It

Not everyone has the time or the skills to remove a fuel tank to clean it properly, so here’s how you can clean your fuel tank without removing it:

Disconnect the fuel tank lines

The first thing to do before you begin is to disconnect the fuel tank lines. This will vary depending on the vehicle model, so it is recommended to look in the owner’s manual.

Drain the fuel tank

This is undoubtedly the most relevant step. The fuel tank must be drained completely. It’s not as easy to empty the fuel as it is to put it in, but you can empty the tank without having to strain too hard or get your clothes dirty.

Drive the vehicle until the fuel is completely empty. Of course, this requires precision, as you must have at least enough gas to get home and have it empty when you leave it in the driveway or in front of your house.

You can also drain the fuel through the drain valve. Look under the bottom of the gas tank to find a plug called a “drain valve”. Place a tub or container under the valve to catch the gasoline.

Stand to the side as you loosen the cap to drain the tank. Wear safety goggles to prevent gasoline from splashing in your eyes.

De-grease the fuel tank

After emptying the fuel tank, make sure it is completely empty. If there is any residue, you will need to clean it with soap and water before proceeding with the next steps.

Next, you will need to use a degreaser containing solvents suitable for gasoline tanks. Scrubbing or brushing with this solution will remove any gasoline residue left in your fuel tank so that it can be used again without being contaminated with gasoline vapors.

Pressure wash

Degreasing a tank is a common process. Once the tank has been degreased, it needs to be washed with water. We recommend you use a pressure washer to remove all the dirt and debris attached to the tank.

This process can take a long time, but it’s worth it to reuse the tank.

Add a cleaning solution

The fuel tank probably has rust inside of it. To clean it, you’ll need a special cleaning solution. These chemicals will dissolve the rust and allow for easier cleaning.

Use professional-grade acid solutions to get better results.

Rinse and dry the fuel tank. Now, rinse the tank with a little water. Spray it with water until there is no more gasoline smell.

When you are finished cleaning it, let the tank dry for 24-36 hours. Make sure the fuel tank is completely dry. Again, after it has dried, check for the smell of gasoline.

Why Shouldn’t You Drive With the Low Fuel Light On?

When the fuel light turns on, head to a gas station as soon as possible. While it is feasible to keep the car running after the tank detects low fuel, this might damage the engine.

Low gasoline may do more than leave you stuck on the roadside. We all want to maximize our gas mileage, but it doesn’t pay to overwork your car. Keep your tank at least a quarter full. So you have some breathing space before you have to make a desperate choice.


How Do You Flush Out A Gas Tank?

Remove the pump from the tank and start cleaning the inside with a cleaner. Start pouring water (clean and warm) into the water tank with the hose. Then, after pouring the water, use the hydrogen peroxide cleaner.

What Is The Easiest Way To Drain A Gas Tank?

Place a jack under the car and start it. Let the car run until the fuel tank is completely empty.

How Much Does It Cost To Clean A Fuel Tank?

Auto mechanics usually charge a one-time fee of $100 or more. It can vary depending on the position and type of vehicle. Our ideas will help you save money while getting the best performance.

Final Thoughts

Fuel tank deposits build up over time. The fuel filter still works, even though it sometimes needs to be cleaned. And a vehicle that hasn’t been driven in months can develop gas tank problems. In addition, rust and corrosion on metal surfaces are problematic.

Follow our tip “How to Clean a Fuel Tank Without Removing It” to get rid of hard particles in your car.

Cleaning the fuel tank restores power. No experts are needed for these treatments. You can do it with a little knowledge.

Liam Dare

As CEO of, my passion for the automotive world motivates me to build online businesses that provide information and entertainment to users. I am proud to contribute in a positive way to the automotive community.