Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the tank?

ryangus
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Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the tank?

Unread post by ryangus » February 27th, 2016, 11:07 am

My old man has just filled his diesel 2013 BT50 fuel tank with unleaded. Apparently there's no drain plug - is this true, and if so, anyone able to suggest the best way to get the fuel out?

hoyks
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Re: Fuel tank drain plug?

Unread post by hoyks » February 27th, 2016, 11:15 am

Syphon or a hand pump. They do have a in tank fuel pump, so you could possibly disconnect the fuel line from under the vehicle and direct it into a container, then switch the ignition to On and the pump will run. It might only run for a while and then need to be turned off and then on again.

I hope you have plenty of jerrys spare.

How low was the tank when he filled it?
A mate did it with his 2011 Ranger and we had to siphon it down before topping it off with fresh diesel.I have a pneumatic venturi vacuum which made it easier. His tank was below 1/4 full and what came out ran the wifes car, the mower and my bike happily, so if it is diluted enough that is one way to get rid of it

hoyks
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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by hoyks » February 27th, 2016, 11:28 am

I just looked in the workshop manual, and they just say to take the filler hose off the top of the tank and siphon/pump it into a container... there is a whole bunch of safety stuff too.

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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by Peter Aawen » February 27th, 2016, 11:29 am

Hoyks makes some good suggestions there. Alternatively, a jiggler syphon, a modified Tanami Pump, or something similar that can suck the fuel out thru the filler neck is probably the easiest way to go if there's no drain plug!! Just last weekend up in Broken Hill my S-i-L got to drain the tanks on a 79 series & a Hilux for exactly the same reason... drivers filled them with ULP after driving from Melbourne & intending to head remote for a week!!! The Tanami Pump works on a pressurised tank providing suction, takes a little fiddling & you can only suck out whatever the volume of your pressure tank is at a time, in our case it was a 20l Jerry Can so it meant a few fill & empty sessions, but both vehicles are still running fine 5000 km plus later! :thumb:

Otherwise, if you are desperate enough, you could always punch a small hole in the bottom of the tank & drain it out that way (don't forget to crack the filler cap to let air in the top) then fit a plug/drain to seal the hole afterwards - you should be able to find a 'screw in' sump drain or similar at a tank manufacturer's supplier; but personally, I wouldn't be putting extra holes in a fuel tank unless it was completely unavoidable!!

Whatever you do, it's best to make sure the ULP contamination level gets down to something less than a maximum of 20% by volume before you try to run the engine. Anything much more than that ratio of ULP in your diesel could in the worst case cause the IP to blow up (ie explode type bang & lots of shattered metal) with heaps of less visible damage to seals, pressures, & pumping ability on the lighter end of the scale! :(

Good Luck :thumb:
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ryangus
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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by ryangus » February 27th, 2016, 11:40 am

Thanks everyone. He's got one of these http://www.bunnings.com.au/gfb-6mm-dril ... p_p6321494 from Bunnings.

I assume the small amount that can't be siphoned should be OK once it's mixed with a full tank of diesel?

hoyks
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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by hoyks » February 27th, 2016, 11:50 am

It would work, but might not the safest option. Drill motors have all sorts of arcs and sparks in them, and you are handling flammable fuel that is producing lots of fumes....

It would be fine with diesel, but not unleaded, you would be after something that is intrinsically safe. If you were going to try it, have the drill motor at the highest point (tray height) with at least 1.5m of hose either side and be doing it in a very well ventilated area.

If you can get it down to less than 1/4 of a tank and then fill it with diesel it should be OK. That was the PITA bit when my mate did it, I only had 3 jerries, so I filled up all the vehicles in the house and all the mower fuel cans and strugged to get one empty jerry to run back down to the servo.

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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by Peter Aawen » February 27th, 2016, 12:00 pm

Re the fuel concentration, once he's got the concentration of ULP vs diesel down below a max of about 20% he should be fine, but of course the less ULP that's left in the tank/the more diesel he puts in on top of what's left of the ULP, the better it'll be! There are some people who actively add a small percentage of ULP to their diesel (4-5% max) in the hope that it'll keep things clean & make the engine run better, altho I'd be a little wary of doing that with a CRD motor, they run their fuel at high pressures & get pretty hot too, which is not a good combination for any level of ULP in the mix!! :eek:

But as Hoyks said, you'd want the power drill to be as far away from the fuel tank & any potential fumes as you can possibly get it (a few metres at least sort of distance! :( ) and that means fitting a long hose on each end of the pump, which of course will make the pumping process take that much longer! BTW, while that pump says it can pump 'up to' 1300 litres an hour, I've never seen one manage anywhere near that & it's a bloody small dia hose, so expect it to take a fair while to pump out a tank full of fuel!! The Tanami pump takes about 5 mins for 20 litres, what with running air compressors & a couple of metres of hose etc, & it runs 1/2" dia hose PDQ once it's going, so I'd expect it to take somewhat longer for that one to move the same volume of fuel, let alone 3 times as much!! ;)
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

ryangus
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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by ryangus » February 27th, 2016, 6:03 pm

All sorted, thanks again everyone. I managed to siphon a bit out using a thin hose, and pumped the rest out using the fuel pump. Probably only 5-10 litres of ULP, which was then topped up with 75 litres of diesel.

The drill pump did indeed say not for flammable liquids. I tried it with a couple of metres of hose, but it didn't work at all - didn't see one drop of liquid enter the clear hose at all. I'll try it for my diffs, gearbox and transfer case, and if that doesn;t work I'll ditch it.

hoyks
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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by hoyks » February 27th, 2016, 6:57 pm

Glad to hear it is sorted.

GBC
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Re: Is there a Fuel tank drain plug? How do you empty the ta

Unread post by GBC » March 1st, 2016, 8:18 am

next time just use a 5ft section of garden hose, put it in the tank, push a compressed air line in a little bit as well and jamb it with a rag. Instant tanami pump.

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