Clean Your Oil Tank !

clean your oil tank

Ahhhh…. Scored a cheap swap meet oil tank! Living the Dream!

What could be better?

An Oil Tank With A BONUS!!!

Yesss Sir there Dudly…. You got the Bonus Plan Baby!

You didn’t just score any old oil tank….. You got one with the Last 20 Years worth of ENGINES INSIDE !!!!

Play your cards right and YOURS could be the next Lucky Engine in there!

oil tank dirt

oil tank dirt - cleaning oil tank

These couple of pictures here show just how much garbage can be hiding inside an oil tank just waiting to go through your engine. A good number of bikes don’t have oil filters, and even those with oil filters doesn’t mean that the oil tank will stay clean. This one happened to be particularly dirty, but this is not uncommon. It took over 2 hours of cleaning to get it acceptable!

Gasoline worked best for cleaning the junk out. The problem is you have to put some gas in the tank, shake it up, dump it out. You can go through a lot of gas if you have a dirty tank like this one, so you need to filter the gas and then put it back in the tank, shake, rinse repeat. This is what the filter looked like after 2 hours of nonsense.

oil tank dirt in filter

Some tanks are easier to clean than others. Horseshoe oil tanks are the worst because of their construction. The seam on the bottom can hold a lot of junk and it is very difficult to get anything in there to poke or scrape the junk stuck to the inside. Obviously the easiest to clean tanks are the square FL tanks with the oil filter in them.

If you read an old Harley service manual, you will see under regular maintenance they tell you to clean the oil tank out with kerosene about once a year.

If you rebuild your engine YOU SHOULD ALWAYS CLEAN THE WHOLE SYSTEM OUT ! This means oil lines, tank and oil cooler if you have one.