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Old 09-16-2012
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Check diesel tank for water

On the boat I care for their is no primary fuel filter. It has been that way for 20 plus years so the owner don't want to add one.

I get to sail it pretty regularly and treat it sort of like a delivery job. IOW I do the best I can with what I have to work with.

Is their a way for me to see if their is any water in the fuel tank.
I'm thinking that if I can find an access port on the tank and can put a hand pump to the bottom of the tank I should be able to pump out any water sitting on the bottom.

It that a good idea, will it work.
PS. I caught her washing the deck before the fuel fill was tightened down a couple of weeks ago.
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Old 09-16-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

Yes... there is a thing called color cut that comes in a squeeze tube that you put on the end of a sounding tape (or stick) it is a creamy yellow color until it comes in contact with water then it turns a bright red...
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Old 09-16-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

Good call -- we used paste every time we used a dipstick to measure the contents of our big diesel tanks (~1,500 gal) both above and below ground.

I think Bob's referring to Kolor Kut, which is a good paste. You can read more about it here.
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Old 09-16-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

I used to use this:

Power Service Products, diesel fuel additives, prevent gelling, clean injectors, disperse water, boost cetane, reduce emissions, improve fuel economyPower Service Products, diesel fuel additives, prevent gelling, clean injectors, disperse water, boos

I Put some diesel in a small container, added some water, then added some additive, the water was no longer visible.

Paul T
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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

It is one thing knowing there is water in your fuel tank. It is another thing entirely to get it out of there.
I used this pump to empty our gasoline tank into various 5 gallon fuel jugs and found some ugly stuff at the bottom thanks to E10 fuel (pic below).
Manual fuel pump here:
Beckson Siphon Mate Specialty Transfer Pump
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Check diesel tank for water-dirtyfuel.jpg  
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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

Quote:
Originally Posted by CalebD View Post
It is one thing knowing there is water in your fuel tank. It is another thing entirely to get it out of there.
I used this pump to empty our gasoline tank into various 5 gallon fuel jugs and found some ugly stuff at the bottom thanks to E10 fuel (pic below).
There's a good reason right there not to use E10 fuel!

For that very reason, the various authorities over here actively discourage the use of E10 on marine engines and you'll never see it for sale on a fuel dock.
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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hartley18 View Post
There's a good reason right there not to use E10 fuel!

For that very reason, the various authorities over here actively discourage the use of E10 on marine engines and you'll never see it for sale on a fuel dock.
Hartley18,

The "various authorities" down under sound a lot more reasonable then they are up here. In the US it is difficult to get non-E10 gasoline unless you have access to an airport as ethanol free fuel is reserved for aviation use only. Since 2001 it has become quite difficult for an ordinary citizen to enter even a recreational airfield.
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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

Ha - the authorities here figured all the boats/small gas engines etc.. needing repairs would help drive our economy and didn't give a dang. Same reason they are now driving relentlessly for E15 even though they KNOW it will cause problems.
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

I guess there have been a few too many "incidents" where the ethanol perishes the fuel lines, fuel leaks into the bilge, fisherman starts engine and ends up in the water.

I do feel sorry for you guys...but it sounds like Diesel is your only (safe, reliable) alternative.
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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: Check diesel tank for water

Want to get rid of water in your fuel tank?
Easy
I'm a Chemical Engineer and I know of what I speak.
Go on line and order a gallon of butyl cellosolve.
Add about an oz. per gallon.
Before doing that, put some fuel in a small glass jar and set it aside.
After adding the butyl and allowing time for it to be well mixed, take another sample of fuel and compare clarity vs. cloudy original. You know when your diesel is crystal clear that all the water has been phased in.
dick
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