Refurbish Diesel Storage Tank


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M4900 w/loader, finish mower, tiller, auger, rake. BX24 w/loader, backhoe
May 27, 2015
Nelson Ohio USA
Hi All,
I inherited a 115 gallon fuel storage tank that was purchased new by a family member to store diesel fuel. It was manufactured in July 2004. It was used very little and I have had it for 9 years sitting outside. It is aluminum and in very good shape on the outside. There is a about a quart of "something" inside. My plan is to drain it then rinse with approximately one gallon of diesel and drain. Then fill it with diesel and the appropriate amounts of Power Service "Fuel Tank Cleaner" and "Bio Kleen Biocide" and run this fuel. I have not decided what type of filter to use when filling the equipment. I am planning to mounting this to a pallet for transport to and from the gas station, and storage at home elevated enough to allow for gravity feed into the equipment. So maybe a Mister Funnel for transfer from tank to tractor.
Any thoughts/advice?


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L4240HSTC with FEL, Ford 1210
Jan 19, 2013
Near Lancaster, PA, USA
Very nice! I'd be really anal about getting the tank clean before pressing it into service. Is there a bottom tap for the fuel to flow out of? That could be a means for any dirt or water to contaminate whatever you're filling.

bird dogger

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Kubota B2650 and lots of other equipment
Feb 24, 2019
North Dakota
That'll sure be handy!! If you wanted to really clean a dirty/sludge built up could have it steam cleaned....maybe at a radiator shop. It's probably not that bad inside, being a newer aluminum tank. you could drop a penlight on a string inside for a visual look.

Even a good hot water with grease cutting soap sloshed around inside might be all you need. Then a good rinse and dry out the inside before putting into service.

If you search "Cleaning out a used diesel fuel storage tank" you'll find all kinds of info and commercial products that you can use depending on the condition within the tank. Chances are the inside isn't all that bad. And Fleet Farm, TSC, etc. carry filters that do a good job of filtering. Make sure the filter is for a "gravity feed" system rather than a "pumped" system.

When I refurbished my old tanks (200 and 300 gal.) I drained them and then took a pressure washer to the inside. Once all the loose gunk was flushed out and the tank dried, I sloshed a couple of gallons of diesel around the inside by rolling the tanks and drained that fuel. After patching some leaks they were put into service. Been using the smaller tank for about 20 years with no problems. The 300 gallon was cleaned up a year or so ago. My last fill was 500 gallons of Off Road at $1.34 gallon delivered. Doubt that will happen again. Bulk Tank Repair

Any water accumulated inside the tank from condensation will show up inside the filter and can be drained out the bottom. Same for any foreign particles that may have escaped the cleaning. If you wanted to really be cautious you could vent the tank through some sillica gel, etc. to try prevent moisture from getting inside. I wouldn't worry about it. It'll show up in the filter housing.
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