500 gallon stationary fuel tank - tiny leak

softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭✭
In the Weeds or what?

Do we have any plumbers here? I can pretty easily take a pic if someone feels they are qualified to assess this.

At the base there is a 1 1/2" outlet that is reduced to 1". But the leak is exceedingly small and almost impossible to pinpoint. I'd estimate my losses at ~ 8-10 drops/day. Not enough to even drip. Just enough to gradually form a droplet after a few hours.

Efforts to tighten made it leak much, much worse. So that's a huge no go. It even makes me consider leaving it alone.  Bought some JB Weld for fuel tanks but I just can't find the source of the leak. It is either too small or too wide spread - perhaps the bottom half of the 1 1/2" outlet?

Oddly there would seem to be a few places where the leak could be originating. The tank was made in China - I suspect their connections may be different than what I am accustomed to. Even considering a compression fitting rather than the standard threaded fitting. Which makes me somewhat leery.

Any plumbers here?
First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries

Comments

  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,828 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Diesel , fuel oil or gasoline  ?

    I'd be tempted to scrub with acetone and use an epoxy fuel tank sealer

    Can you empty the tank to do repairs (or wait till it's nearly empty ? )
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
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  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭✭
    Can't empty without another tank.  Gasoline.

    Scrubbed thoroughly of course. Leak is just too small to pinpoint.

    JB Weld is a 2-part epoxy. A lot of adhesives do not work with fuel. This is for fuel. I'd have to use a great deal unless I can pinpoint the leak. Three different areas could be the leak.

    I'm not even sure that it is more than 1-2 drops/day. It does not drip drop.
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • Marc KurthMarc Kurth Solar Expert Posts: 784 ✭✭✭✭
    How many gallons are in the tank?
    I always have more questions than answers. That's the nature of life.
  • mcgivormcgivor Solar Expert Posts: 3,428 ✭✭✭✭✭
    This is one of the best products to use with fuel tank leaks https://www.amazon.com/Seal-All-380011-Adhesive/dp/B0000AXYZG
    1500W, 6× Schutten 250W Poly panels , Schneider MPPT 60 150 CC, Schneider SW 2524 inverter, 400Ah LFP 24V nominal battery bank 
    Second system 1890W  3 × 300W No name brand poly, 3×330 Sunsolar Poly panels, Morningstar TS 60 PWM controller, no name 2000W inverter 400Ah FLA 24V nominal used for water pumping and day time air conditioning.  
    5Kw Yanmar clone single cylinder air cooled diesel generator for rare emergency charging and welding.
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 18 #6
    How many gallons are in the tank?

    About 485. The leak started due to the stress of washboard roads. I think it is leaking less each day. Put a paper plate under it a few hours ago. Not a drop.

    If I lose 1-2 drops/day - that will take a pretty long time to drain. About 35,000 years. I likely will not live that long. I figure my consciousness will fit in an affordable $3.49 32GB USB stick. But the stick lasts how long?
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,656 admin
    If metal tank, water in bottom, pinhole rust? If so, then the tank is not really structurally sound now?

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭✭
    That is definitely not the issue. A pinhole would be exceedingly easy to find and fix. The tank is kind of newish - just wasn't made for washboard roads - not much is. Snapped a 9.75 axle a couple years ago.

    This is a couple drops/day folks. Not a "structurally unsound" tank. Though I knew it was coming.
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • geosierranevadageosierranevada Registered Users Posts: 36 ✭✭✭
    Softdown
    It may sound silly but rub a bar of ivory soap on the leaking area, it works but I have not done it since 1972.

    George.    Have a nice day
    Off grid for 18 years. 5KW panels, Trace sw4024, Bergy XL1 wind generator, GB forklift battery.  3 SQF 2 well pump, 12kw back up gen.  Not easy living in the wilderness but it keeps you busy
  • solar_davesolar_dave Solar Expert Posts: 2,366 ✭✭✭✭
    Softdown
    It may sound silly but rub a bar of ivory soap on the leaking area, it works but I have not done it since 1972.

    George.    Have a nice day
    Yeah when I was a kid I had a '61 t-bird with a rusty tank, soaped it about once a week or after a rain. LOL
  • Marc KurthMarc Kurth Solar Expert Posts: 784 ✭✭✭✭
    softdown said:
    How many gallons are in the tank?

    About 485. The leak started due to the stress of washboard roads. I think it is leaking less each day. Put a paper plate under it a few hours ago. Not a drop.

    If I lose 1-2 drops/day - that will take a pretty long time to drain. About 35,000 years. I likely will not live that long. I figure my consciousness will fit in an affordable $3.49 32GB USB stick. But the stick lasts how long?

    I am guessing that you burn a lot of gasoline in order to use it up before it ages out, even with a stabilizer additive.
    I always have more questions than answers. That's the nature of life.
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 18 #12
    Yes - nothing is close for one thing. Accounts are a 500 miles round trip. Torn up rentals are a 5000 miles round trip. If I sen money to S Florida without supervising - it pretty much disappears.
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,247 ✭✭✭✭
    It quit leaking. Not a drop in 28 hours. Everything is bone dry. What a relief!
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
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