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Thread: Fuel tank refurbishment

  1. #1

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    Default Fuel tank refurbishment

    Has anyone sent their fuel tanks (PA22-160) out to get cleaned/refurbished? Do you just send them to an automotive shop? Looking for places that offer the service.


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  2. #2
    Glen Geller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    Since we don't know the scope or perceived reason of your project it is hard to give a clear answer.
    I searched the googles for Refurbishing Aircraft Fuel Tanks and had a bunch of hits.
    Good luck!

    https://www.google.com/search?q=refu...client=gws-wiz
    Glen Geller
    1955 PA22-150 "One For Papa!"

  3. #3
    Gilbert Pierce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    Why do they need refurbishment?
    Do not let anyone coat the inside with a SEALER. It will come loose sooner or later and cause big problems. If they are leaking there are shops that will cut out corroded aluminum and replace it.
    Last edited by Gilbert Pierce; 12-29-2021 at 07:02 PM.

  4. #4

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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    Sorry, could have been clearer. Tanks are out of the wings at the moment and when I move them around I can hear crap rattling around the inside and there is some buildup just inside the outlets when the hoses were removed.

    I am just looking to get them cleaned up on the inside before reinstalling them. Just looking if anyone had a similar experience


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  5. #5
    Gilbert Pierce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    It could be the fuel gage floats banging around. Remove the gage. Rinse the tanks out with water. Let them thoroughly dry. Inspect the inside with a camera or mirror. If clean, replace the gages with new gaskets. That may solve your problem.

  6. #6

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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilbert Pierce View Post
    It could be the fuel gage floats banging around. Remove the gage. Rinse the tanks out with water. Let them thoroughly dry. Inspect the inside with a camera or mirror. If clean, replace the gages with new gaskets. That may solve your problem.
    Ok, Iíll do that first. Thank you!


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  7. #7
    walt.buskey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    When I had my wings at home refurbishing them, I removed tanks & cleaned them up as well.

    I used Chemtool B-12 in them, letting that soak for several hours, then fashioned a scrub brush out of a piece of 1/8" x 36" music wire (from my model aviation stash) and a piece of Scotch-Brite stuff. That seemed to be quite effective, going in through the fuel gauge hole. Scrubber was a hinged end on the long wire, with a flat copper piece with its corners turned down to grip the Scotch-Brite. I was able to scrub the entire bottom surface pretty well with that set-up. Drained off the B-12, then a flush with hot soapy water followed by clean water, allowed to throughly dry, and a final flush with a small amount of 100LL.

    While I was at it, I also sanded smooth the area around the fuel gauge sender and primed with zinc chromate. (New gaskets, rubberized washers & socket-head screws installed later.)

    Got a lot of crap out of the tanks and finger strainers (replaced; one had a cracked brass fitting); even found one of those ^$%#! plastic fuel can spouts in one tank!

    So all in all, not too hard a job, and very rewarding to me.

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  8. #8

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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    Some radiator shops have boiling tanks.
    Remove the fuel gauge and cap. Have them put it in overnight, take it out of the tank in the morning and rinse it with fresh water.
    Use extreme caution if you have them leak check it. Do not over pressurize it. They can plug all of the holes, put a minute amount of air to it and drop it in a tank of water to check for leaks. Just like they would do a radiator.
    Good luck.

    Rick

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    I had some white scale buildup, I put about 3 or 4 feet of chain in the tank and some good detergent let them soak and gently shook the tanks. Did that for a couple days off and on, Took some time but they look new on the inside. I do like the scotch bride idea as well.
    Last edited by shelbysautosales; 01-08-2022 at 11:51 AM. Reason: Wasnít finished

  10. #10
    Administrator Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel tank refurbishment

    I have had corrosion in the seams where the two halves are welded together. Put etch in the tank and sloshed it around and then rinsed very well and welded back over the seam that had been leaking.

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