How to Keep Your Gas Tank Clean

Few parts of your vehicle get as much use as your gas tank. There is always gas sitting in your tank, whether you’re driving your vehicle or leaving it sitting in the back of the garage. When your car is running, the gas tank is the starting point for all action, as fuel is brought to the engine from the gas tank via the fuel pump. 

Keeping your gas tank clean is very easy and simple, and requires only a few steps. By keeping the tank clean, you’ll ensure that dirt, debris, and harmful contaminants are kept out of your gas, and therefore out of your fuel pump, and potentially your engine as well. 

Take Basic Care of your Fuel Cap

One of the best ways to make sure that your gas tank stays in good condition, is to make sure that nothing funky gets in there in the first place. After refueling your vehicle, always take the time to properly place your fuel cap back on, to keep contaminants from falling into the tank. If you notice a crack in your fuel cap, or the cap is not securing properly, have it replaced as soon as possible.

Be Careful When Refueling

Any time you add gas to your vehicle, make sure that you’re careful and cognizant of the debris that can end up in your gas tank. Make sure that the tip of the gas nozzle is clean before inserting it into your fuel tank – if it’s not, simply wipe it down with a paper towel. As soon as you are finished refueling, put the fuel cap back on, to limit the amount of exposure your tank has.

Clean Out Your Fuel Tank 

Your fuel tank doesn’t need to be cleaned with regularity, but any time the fuel pump is replaced, the gas tank should be cleaned. To do so is fairly simple, though it requires some mechanical skills. As is always the case with automotive maintenance, if you’re not 100% comfortable with this task, leave it to a professional. Having your fuel tank cleaned is very quick and affordable if your fuel pump is being replaced.

If you do wish to clean the fuel tank on your own, wait until the fuel pump has been removed, then swirl and pour out any remaining gas. Add a soap and water mixture (make sure to use soap with low suds), and swirl and drain once more, then dry with compressed air and lint-free towels). Replace the fuel pump, and you’re good to go!
It doesn’t take much TLC to take care of your gas tank, but your fuel pump and your engine will thank you for it!  

About The Author

Brady Klopfer

Brady Klopfer is a freelance writer and editor from Los Angeles. You can read more of his work here