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  #1  
Old 07-05-2022, 05:13 PM
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Possible Algae in tank?

Hello,
Working on an 87 300D

I have been recently had plugged strainer inside my Fuel tank.
I can clean the strainer, but it plugs up after a very short time.
The fuel is not black or slimy like I would expect algae contaminated diesel to be, but I dont know what else it could be.
I have also put biocide in the tank.

This is my question-
If I take the tank out of the car, and drain it and leave it in the hot sun (triple digit temp) for a few weeks, will that kill the algae?

Any thoughts are appreciated

Thanks!

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  #2  
Old 07-05-2022, 05:48 PM
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Does it look like this?
https://i.redd.it/83g9fctirqx81.jpg
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  #3  
Old 07-05-2022, 08:17 PM
vwnate1's Avatar
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Post Fun, Fun Tank Time

You should (must) have a plastic fuel intake screen like the one pictured .

Some cars have narrower, longer translucent screens that you can't see the algae collecting in, these are very bad for your engine indeed and should be replaced A.S.A.P. .

Get as least two of the clear plastic ones and install one correctly, put the other in the glove box and as soon as you notice the algae crud collecting, replace the dirty filter and take it home, clean it out with dish soap etc. DO NOT USE AEROSOL AUTO CLEANERS (carby / brake / electro contact etc.) ~ once it's nice and clean,(you rise it out with tap water) stand it on end overnight or until it's COMPLETELY DRY ~ ANY MOISTURE REMAINING WILL RUIN YOUR INJECTORS .

If you're rich you can just buy a few new screens but I find that even after removing the in tank screen and cleaning it (also with dish soap and a soft bristle brush), drying and replacing it and adding biocide, there will be accumulated dead algae that ever so slowly works it's way out of the tank and fuel sender , catching in the clear plastic fuel intake screen .

Like most repairs on old Mercedes' it's not hard nor difficult and requires no special tools / experience , just time and patience .
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  #4  
Old 07-05-2022, 11:59 PM
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"This is my question-
If I take the tank out of the car, and drain it and leave it in the hot sun (triple digit temp) for a few weeks, will that kill the algae?

Any thoughts are appreciated

Thanks!"

Good ides to remove the tank. I would also use some biocide. You have to kill the crud. (but maybe the high temp will also do it in. Just have to scrape the dry crud out....ugh

I wonder whether hydrogen peroxide and baking soda will also kill it?
That is the recipe for killing bathroom tile grout mold.
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  #5  
Old 07-06-2022, 08:59 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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treat your tank with biocide. It will kill the BACTERIA and render it so it will flow through the filter and burn off.
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  #6  
Old 07-06-2022, 10:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
treat your tank with biocide. It will kill the BACTERIA and render it so it will flow through the filter and burn off.
Dead microbes are far more likely to clog a filter than flow through it.

https://www.donaldson.com/en-be/bulk-fluid-storage/technical-articles/microbial-bacteria-diesel-fuel/#:~:text=Microbial%20growth%20can%20occur%20in%20any%20diesel%20fuel.,as%20well.%20Stagnant%20fuel%2 0is%20especially%20at%20risk.
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  #7  
Old 07-06-2022, 11:02 AM
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Well it does appear according to that article that an advanced case may plug and not flow through. In my personal experience though treating them will allow them to flow through and be burned off. I have done this numerous times. I have owned probably more than forty diesel cars and trucks. Trying to treat them seems like a no brainer to me since no harm can be done by treating it.

That advanced case shown in the article would plug the tank strainer. Anything coming through the strainer should be stopped by the clear filter on the side of the engine and anything coming through that should be stopped by the big filter that looks like a small oil filter.
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #8  
Old 07-06-2022, 11:06 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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I just read that article again. It clearly is offering products to clean big tanks as illustrated on the website. It also refers to sending a man down into the tank to scrub the walls. Nowhere is a car or truck mentioned.
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #9  
Old 07-06-2022, 11:15 AM
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Just my .02, but if I went to all the trouble of taking the fuel tank out, I would take it to a shop and have it professionally cleaned. Radiator shops can usually do it for you. Again, just my .02.
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  #10  
Old 07-06-2022, 11:21 AM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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...well, if you have the tank out already, no harm to be done there.
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..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #11  
Old 07-06-2022, 02:33 PM
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I am a fan of Startron and have never had to pull a tank. Early on, I had a couple of filters stop up on a trip. Replacing the filters got me home. I just follow whatever recommendations were on the bottle and perhaps a little more. Now that my diesels have been sitting for various reasons, I'll add some Startron as a precaution but not make a big deal about it unless it really is a big deal.
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  #12  
Old 07-06-2022, 08:11 PM
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yes, the Primary filter looks almost exactly like that!
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  #13  
Old 07-06-2022, 08:15 PM
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Digg,
Yes, I have thought about that, but was trying to find a home remedy first.
Thanks for the .02!
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  #14  
Old 07-06-2022, 10:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1987300sdl View Post
Hello,
Working on an 87 300D

I have been recently had plugged strainer inside my Fuel tank.
I can clean the strainer, but it plugs up after a very short time.
The fuel is not black or slimy like I would expect algae contaminated diesel to be, but I dont know what else it could be.
I have also put biocide in the tank.

This is my question-
If I take the tank out of the car, and drain it and leave it in the hot sun (triple digit temp) for a few weeks, will that kill the algae?

Any thoughts are appreciated

Thanks!
Startron makes a product for diesels that has an enzyme that is supposed to not only kill but break up the bodies, so they are small enough to pass through the filters. Boat places sell it and maybe NAPA.

However, if it is extremely bad nothing works but cleaning out the tank and also treating it with something to kill the stuff.

No matter what you do you may end up changing more than a few fuel filters.
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  #15  
Old 07-06-2022, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unkl300d View Post
"This is my question-
If I take the tank out of the car, and drain it and leave it in the hot sun (triple digit temp) for a few weeks, will that kill the algae?

Any thoughts are appreciated

Thanks!"

Good ides to remove the tank. I would also use some biocide. You have to kill the crud. (but maybe the high temp will also do it in. Just have to scrape the dry crud out....ugh

I wonder whether hydrogen peroxide and baking soda will also kill it?
That is the recipe for killing bathroom tile grout mold.
What I am going to call the infection is also in your fuel lines and hoses. Remember it is something that grows.

Bilbore biocide is a product that just kills the stuff and is well known for ships and boating.

Personally, I would not waste time using anything that was not made for the job. But if you just insist on something homemade do an internet search. I cannot remember what it is, but it is not Alge because I believe Alge needs sunlight to grow.

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Last edited by Diesel911; 07-07-2022 at 01:26 AM.
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