Rust/Red Residue in Fuel Tank - SV1000 Portal
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 22nd August 2019, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
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Rust/Red Residue in Fuel Tank

Hey all,

This might sound odd, but yesterday I opened up my fuel cap for the first time since purchasing the bike last week. For some dumb reason, I never thought to open the cap while talking to the seller.

Anyway, when I opened it, I immediately noticed red thick residue all over the inside. My assumption is that it's a bunch of rust. But honestly, I have never seen SO MUCH thick red rust inside a fuel tank before. It almost looks like someone poured a bunch of red epoxy paint inside the tank and let it dry.

If it is rust, is there an easy way to clean it? Or do I need to get a new tank ASAP? The rust doesn't seem to be floating around or anything. But that doesn't mean that pieces of it aren't getting inside the fuel lines. Also, does the SV1k have a fuel filter that would trap the rust particles?

Hopefully I'm overly paranoid and the fix isn't too difficult. Please let me know if you've experienced this before.
I can post photos later when I get a chance after work.

Thanks!

ps. The bike is in extremely good shape for its age. I am just at a loss how rust could have gotten in. Unless it was stored in a shed with an empty tank.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 22nd August 2019, 02:59 PM
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Someone may have had the tank coated in order to stop rust.

Yes, there's a fuel filter, although it isn't the easiest to access (you have to pull the pump from the tank)
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 22nd August 2019, 03:08 PM
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I could almost guarantee it's rust. I bet the bike has been unused for a long period of time with a partial tank of ethanol-containing gas. You should remove the fuel pump and clean the mesh "pre filter". See this thread, especially posts 9-13 for how I did that and stripped the tank of rust using a phosphoric acid solution that I bought at Home Depot. It worked great and now I just keep my gas tank full at all times to prevent rust from returning.

edit: it certainly could be a rust protective sealant as Junkie posted. Snap some pics for us to see.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 22nd August 2019, 03:53 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by oldbaldsob View Post
I could almost guarantee it's rust. I bet the bike has been unused for a long period of time with a partial tank of ethanol-containing gas. You should remove the fuel pump and clean the mesh "pre filter". See this thread, especially posts 9-13 for how I did that and stripped the tank of rust using a phosphoric acid solution that I bought at Home Depot. It worked great and now I just keep my gas tank full at all times to prevent rust from returning.

edit: it certainly could be a rust protective sealant as Junkie posted. Snap some pics for us to see.
Thanks for the help! I will definitely have a project on my hands. Judging from your photos, my gas tank has 10x more rust. But I hope that either the phosphoric acid solution you used or something else will work. I read some other posts where people use a solution that was designed to get rid of rust, like Evapo-Rust. (unless you'd suggest otherwise).

Also, reading your thread... man.. SV1000s with 800 miles?? That's incredible! What a gem
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 22nd August 2019, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by YevZak View Post
Thanks for the help! I will definitely have a project on my hands. Judging from your photos, my gas tank has 10x more rust. But I hope that either the phosphoric acid solution you used or something else will work. I read some other posts where people use a solution that was designed to get rid of rust, like Evapo-Rust. (unless you'd suggest otherwise).

Also, reading your thread... man.. SV1000s with 800 miles?? That's incredible! What a gem

Thanks! Most of the rust remover stuff is indeed varying amounts of phosphoric acid. The stuff I bought at Home Depot was like $20-$30 for a gallon of it. I think the product name was "Behr". A couple of liter or so doses swished vigorously around in your tank for several minutes followed by a high pressure rinse like at a car wash, then distilled water rinse followed by a heavy fogging with WD-40 should do the trick. Then just reinstall the fuel pump and tank (you might need a new fuel pump gasket if gas leaks from the bottom of the tank after you reinstall the fuel pump). Keeping the tank full of gas should prevent any further rust issues.


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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 23rd August 2019, 02:24 AM
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If its real bad, you might need to do the acid wash twice, but you will know soon enough.....

Here in Oz we can buy non-ethanol fuel, so the rust thing isn't an issue there, but, do you have that option there ?

There are some rust-convertor solutions out there as well......(not sure of names for your market)
You could slop some of that in there as well if the second acid wash doesn't remove the rest.....then let it go off for a day or so and then do another wash to make sure the residue is gone before adding fuel....

May be some people who have done that before who can add some advice on that one.....

To add to oldbaldsob's plan on the acid, throwing some clean small nut nuts in the tank with the acid and giving it a damn good shake can also remove some heavier rust.....

I might no' be a smart man Jenny....but i can pain' ma copper colored bike a dif'ren color.....
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 23rd August 2019, 11:34 AM
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I bought an SV650 on the Gold Coast (I am in Sydney) and the bike looked awesome with only 4000klms on the clock it was mint. I gave the bike a good going over and the seller said he’d filled up the tank for me and yes he did but only to hide the rust in the tank, I was 400ks into my return journey when I realised what he had done, he’d filled it so I couldn’t see the rust, the tank was a bucket of rust. Anyway made it back ok.

After some internet searching I decided I would go the filling the tank with vinegar routine and it worked a treat, did it twice let it soak for a couple of days each time. Pressure washed the inside, wiped it out as much as possible then took a hair dryer to it to get as much moisture out of it as I could and then I let it bake in the sun for a couple of days, bringing it in at night. Worked a treat.

I took the pump apart and cleaned it, hooked it up to a battery and pumped some fresh gas through it just to be sure no left over rust. I bought a new filter and that’s all she wrote, I was very lucky the filter stopped any crap from getting into the injectors.

There are kits you can buy for about $90 and they also give you a liquid you put in the tank and you slosh it around and then another thick creamy liquid sealant you dribble over the inside of the tank to stop the rust returning.... apparently.

Anyway that was my journey, good luck with yours whichever route you take.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 23rd August 2019, 02:43 PM Thread Starter
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Pics of Rust/Red crap
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File Type: jpg 793BB7FE-D502-4529-A7E7-12086BB5D917_1566567739727.jpg (345.6 KB, 15 views)
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 23rd August 2019, 02:44 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by YevZak View Post
Pics of Rust/Red crap
We have ethanol free gas stations. Usually something like Quick Trip will have that option. It’s 87 octane with no Ethanol. I will definitely make it a point to only fuel up with that type of gas.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 23rd August 2019, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by YevZak View Post
Pics of Rust/Red crap

Kind of looks like someone did a half-assed job of sealing the tank with something. I can see areas of the red substance you were talking about that have run around the fuel cap opening. It's as if the person who did it just turned the fuel tank upside down and let it drip out while it was drying. It will be interesting to see what your fuel pump pre-filter screen looks like.


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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 26th August 2019, 03:03 AM
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Pics of Rust/Red crap
Holy Sheet.....thats nasty....cetainly looks like a liner of some sort....

Kreem is the only decent brand for that use....but that dont look like that at all....

Why th ehell they lined it is anyones guess, apart from trying to plug pinholes from rust....

Go the whole hog like oldbaldsob has suggested...... and then stay the hell away from that sugarsoap shit they call ethanol....

I might no' be a smart man Jenny....but i can pain' ma copper colored bike a dif'ren color.....
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 27th August 2019, 07:46 AM
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I'd check salvage yards for a used SV gas tank.

I'm in the habit of filling up my tank after every ride. That's the best way to prevent rust.

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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 7th October 2019, 03:57 AM Thread Starter
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Update: so I took the tank off and removed the pump. I capped off the bottom hole and filled the tank with a rust remover. Entire gallon. Been shaking it around and letting it soak. So far the red gummy stuff isn’t coming off at all. There are some bits of rust that’s floating around. But the ugly crazy red crap is still there.

I’m beginning to wonder is paint thinner would do anything? Any advice on that?
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 7th October 2019, 07:47 PM
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Have a search through the Practical Sports Bikes group on Facebook. This comes up a lot with the various methods on how to remove the rust etc.
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 7th October 2019, 07:55 PM
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I think POR sells a kit that includes a separate fuel tank stripper and liner. Might be worth checking out.

edit: The POR-15 Strip Gel is apparently what you need to remove the old liner first: https://www.por15.com/POR-15-Strip-Gel (or you could see if you could find something that may be less expensive. Methylene chloride is this stuff's active ingredient according to the MSDS (found here). I searched around and found that Home Depot and Lowe's have stopped carrying paint strippers with methylene chloride due to some accidental deaths. Probably people huffing it.

Strip Gel is described in the first pic in this link: https://www.por15.com/POR-15-Fuel-Tank-Sealer


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