How to Remove Rust from Inside a Diesel Fuel Tank

How to Remove Rust from Inside a Diesel Fuel Tank? Easy Way in 2023

When a car or motorcycle gas tank gets rusted the restoration projects stop abruptly. In such a situation, you need to clean the rust inside the diesel fuel tank. But the question is “How to remove rust from inside a diesel fuel tank’. Well, there are two ways.

One you can go to the nearby shop and ask them to do that, which is going to be expensive. And the second option is you can do it all by yourself. And once you know the process it becomes very easy to do that.

Why Diesel Fuel Tank Rust

There are many reasons why  Diesel Fuel Tank Rust. Corrosive process fluids and cleansers, high humidity, or high salt situations can dissolve the native protective coating which is usually chromium oxide, and cause stainless steel corrosion.

Surface rust removal improves the look of surfaces, but its usefulness extends beyond aesthetics. Rust, if left uncontrolled, may cause pitting and structural damage to goods and components, as well as influence instrumentation performance, pollute flow channels, and reduce dependability.

The exterior surface of the gasoline tank appears to corrode often. We’re not too concerned about taking adequate care of the tank, or even the engine. Even after washing, rust will form if moisture remains on the surface. Make sure you also check our guide for How to Keep Gas Tank from Rusting after Cleaning?

How to remove rust from inside a diesel fuel tank

remove rust from inside a diesel fuel tank

Safety Precautions

Many gas tank rust remedies use harsh chemicals or abrasives. When working with any chemicals, including gasoline, you have to keep yourself from those chemicals. Take the following precautions while dealing with gas tank treatments to ensure your safety:

  • Eye protection and a face mask for safety.
  • To prevent concentrated vapors, work in an open location with lots of air.
  • Do not combine items unless instructed to do so by the manufacturer; chemical reactions may occur.
  • Before removing the gas tank or utilizing any combustible substance, be sure that all heat and electricity sources are removed from the area.
  • While working on the gas tank and fuel system, carefully store fuel and gasoline.
  • Keep a hose available while working with chemicals such as acids
  • You avoid the spilling of potentially hazardous substances, make sure to fill up all of the openings in the gas tank.


Chemicals can range from vinegar and baking soda, which cause a chemical reaction that foams and aids in the removal of rust, to muriatic acid or isopropyl alcohol.

Using a mix of abrasives and chemicals to remove rust can also be beneficial; just make sure the products you choose are suitable and will not cause more harm to your gas tank.

Also, dilute the chemical to avoid causing harm to your gas tank. Avoid muriatic acid solutions if your gas tank contains soldering because the acid can operate so fast that it may eat away the material before it eliminates all of the rust. Besides, you can read some How to Clean a Diesel Fuel Tank Without Removing it?


Electrolysis is the process of separating materials by delivering an electric current through an ionic compound. A 12V battery, a piece of ferrous metal, and sodium carbonate would work perfectly.

Electrolysis is effective for removing rust from tiny things, but with minor changes, it may also be used to remove rust from a gas tank. It is critical to use caution when connecting and removing the power source, and you must ensure that the ferrous metal does not come into contact with the edge of the gas tank.

Suspending the ferrous metal might be the most difficult part of the rust removal procedure. However, the theory underlying this process is sound, and electrolysis can remove far more rust than other methods.

Acetic Acid

Acetic acid reactions are frequently slower than phosphoric acid reactions and may be a preferable alternative when the underlying corrosion/staining affects a greater percentage of the substrate.

Following acid exposure, components must be thoroughly washed with deionized water to ensure total trace acid elimination.

Acid Exposure

Depending on the alloy, 300 series exposure to harsh acids can range from a few hours or days to a year or more before failure; not a good model for dependability. In general, excessive quantities of acid will cause problems for stainless steels such as 300, 304, or 316.

Rust Remover

When your gas tank is empty, add a couple of handfuls of gravel, nuts, bolts, or BBs, then add some liquid and shake. Many mechanics swear by soap and water, but vinegar is a low-risk solution that won’t damage most other surfaces in your garage.

Seal all the holes with various sized plugs and materials before putting liquid (or tiny pebbles) into the tank. Then, start with the abrasives. After that, pour in the liquid and begin shaking the tank. Depending on the size of the tank, you may need to build a mechanism to shake it, or you may be able to shake it manually.

So the steps will be:

  • Take out the gasoline tank.
  • Remove any trash and dust from the exterior surface.
  • Fill a bucket halfway with dishwashing soap and warm water.
  • Soapy water should be used to completely clean the outside surface.
  • Don’t waste time waiting for it to dry.
  • Fill the container with a dishwashing soapy water solution.
  • Shake it up and set it aside for a time.
  • Remove the water.
  • Pour vinegar into the tank once more.
  • After removing the vinegar, immediately rinse with soapy water.
  • Pour in the muriatic acid.
  • Shake it up and take it outside.
  • Finally, using a funnel, pour denatured alcohol within.
  • Shake it vigorously to thoroughly clean it.

Final Words

rust from inside a diesel fuel tank

If you are trying to clean the diesel fuel tank for the first time then you might feel confused and find it difficult. The first thing to keep in mind is that you have to take all the safety measurements because the remover is strong and the chemical reaction of the rust and the remover will damage the skin if it gets in touch with the skin. By following the steps anyone can remove the rust from inside a diesel fuel tank.

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