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We have a Morgan 33 O/I Pilothouse and I have done enough on her to start sailing. However, the tank is still full of old diesel at least one, mabey two years old. I am trying to find a source to pump it out and check the tank for anything bad. We live in the Clear Lake area of south Texas, near Galveston Island. Any advice ?
Thanks, Bill Hershey
 

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Look in your local marine advertisment sections for companies who will clean the fuel for you. The process of cleaning and resoring fuel is called " polishing". I have tried to dispose of diesel fuel with no luck. Most municipalities consider it hazardous waste and will not dispose of it. You can check it for water and other impurities by puting it in a clear glass container. If it is not really bad, you can perhaps "give it away" to some large boat with a thousand gallon tank. This is what I did.
Good luck.
Bill
 

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Marinas and Yacht Clubs around here in CT have tanks for old engine oil and the like, which is routinely collected by the oil-cleaning companies (though I''ve never heard the term polisher, used above, before). Our local Yellow Pages has a section for Environmental & Ecological Services, which lists many companies that clean or replace oil tanks. They might be happy to help you out for free, since after removing and cleaning your fuel, they may be able to sell it for heating oil.
 

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When I bought my Bristol it had a 24 gallon fuel tank, full, which had set for at least 4 years. With my trusty little handpump, I pumped the whole damn thing dry, flushed with a couple gallons and pumped dry again, draining as much as possible from the fuel/water separator, but still finding that pumping was necessary. A length of lp gas type copper tubing on the pump makes it a pretty good "wand" for waving around in the tank and getting all the corners. I did get quite a bit of sludge. I simply dumped the diesel into my heating oil tank (in Maine) at home and burned it with no problems. It''s the same fuel, different color. I save the last little bits in the cans, dump it into glass so I can see the water, pour off the fuel and use that for a relatively low volatility paintbrush cleaner. The last gallon or so of crap is effectively waste fuel, which I gave to a friend who had a waste oil burner in his garage. Afterwards, keep an eye on your fuel water separator and a jug nearby to drain a little into every once in awhile to keep the fuel getting to the engine aqua-free. Look for clouds in the separator, schmung in the bottom. It''s pretty obvious. No big pucker.......
 

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I just had the same problem...my boat is in Clear Lake too. Diesel Fuel Maintenance did a good job cleaning the fuel. They had to cut a second port in the tank so they could run their high-pressure closed loop system through it to clean the tank as well as the fuel. They charged $200 for cleaning, plus about $150 to cut the port. the tank is 40-gal. and was full. I believe Jeff was the person I delt with. Kinda expensive, but clean diesel fuel is important.

Another alternative: I heard Houston is having a recycling day at the Clear Lake campus soon (this week or next week)...you can take any hazardous waste there on that day and they will dispose of it free. However, you might still have sludge in the bottom of your tank.

Good luck,
 

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About 5 years age I bought a PY 26 with a huge 8 hp Yanmar diesel. It has a 12 gallon tank that was full ( 4 year supply ). The boat sat for 4 years before I bought it. I asked truck mechanics what to do, and was referred to a large fuel distributor. He told me to consider myself lucky in that the fuel currently available is not of the quality of old diesel fuel. He had me put in some algie killer / preventer and change the filter. I am still burning that tank of fuel and it runs perfectly. OK oK I did add 2 gallons in 1998...
 

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i am with bgruen. if the tank has been sealed nothing but condensation could have gotten in the fuel. (diesal fuel may jell if submitted to extremely cold temperatures.) the fuel filter should trap any particles and the water seperator should take care of the condensation. unless your fuel line is completely on the bottom of the tank you should not pick up any sludge. $350 would have bought a lot of fuel filters.
 

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I had the same issue recently with my 34 Irwin. I removed the fuel by using a small hand bilge pump (purchased at West Marine)and duck taped a small tube to the end and pumped the 17 gal tank into 5 gal fuel containers (then recycled it). I would highly recommend removing the fuel tank (if it is stainless it wont be heavy)and taking it to a diesel truck shop to have them clean it out (about $50 - $75). My biggest problem wasn''t the age of the fuel or water but the stuff that actualy grows in the fuel. then use a biocide additive every time you fill up to keep the fuel clean.
 
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