I moved onto cleaning up the fuel system this week. I was happy to find that the fuel tank was essentially empty, reducing the risk of a environmental disaster significantly. Removing the fuel lines from the tank and fuel pump resulted in only a few drips of foul gasoline out of each. Dropping the fuel tank out of the car was very easy… four bolts and a little prying and it dropped out.
I pulled the fuel level sender out and could see by the stains on it that the tank was probably about half full when it was stored. It seems that if you leave about 10 gallons of gas for about 20 years, it reduces to about 1 quart of nasty brown stuff. With the help of a friend, we poured what we could of what remained into an appropriate container. Getting the last bit out it nearly impossible due to the location of the drain, fuel pickups, and filler. Inside, its definitely rusty, but I’ve seen worse. There is a local radiator shop that can clean it up for me.
Next, we moved onto the fuel pump. Overall, it doesn’t look that bad from the outside. We decided it made sense to remove the bottom cover of the pump to see if what crud might have made it inside. There was some sludge and varnish, but it wasn’t too bad. After soaking and flushing with some acetone I had handy, it cleaned up nicely. Here is a look inside during the cleaning process:
We then briefly connected the pump to a battery to ensure that it would run. The pump did run, but a bit unevenly. It didn’t seem like a good idea to run it any more than a few seconds without any fuel in it, so I concluded that it works well enough to install back in the car for now. I’ll order up a new seal (thats A 004 997 04 45, I hope) along with new fuel lines, a fuel filter, and tank screener.