Do you have a plastic gas can that looks really dirty, has sludge in it, or appears black?
Even the outside of your gas can get so dirty that when you move the gas, you can transfer the dirt to the inside of your car boot, onto your hands, and even stain your clothes.
If you find you have some gas cans that could really do with a good clean, then we have the right tips to show you just how to do that.
It is important to give your gas can a good clean out every now and again, so you don’t get too many contaminants going into your car fuel tank, generator engine, and even your lawnmower.
Table of Contents
How To Clean A Plastic Gas Can?
If you have gas in your tank, you need to dispose of it properly first. Then remove the spout and the cap. Now squirt some detergent into the can. Consider using a good detergent with degreasing properties such as cleaner degreaser. After putting the detergent in, fill it halfway up with hot water, put the cap on, and shake the can to remove any dirt and built-up deposits. Don’t tip the contents down the sink as it can block the drain. Tip it outside and then go ahead and rinse the container out with clean water. Repeat the process if needed.
How To Clean The Outside Of Your Plastic Gas Can
When you are cleaning the outside of your gas can you want to make sure that your container is empty, as moving the container too much can cause gas to leak out.
Using a toothbrush or scrubbing brush and the same detergent as above, scrub the gas can and keep wetting the brush to ensure you have enough suds.
Once you have cleaned the sides and the top, you can tip the can upside down and clean the bottom of the can until you get rid of all the grime.
When you are done, you can rinse the container under clean water. For the next step, it is important that you leave the can in a dry spot that has plenty of air circulation to dry out the water that remains inside.
Ensure you leave the cap off to dry out as if water remains when you put the gas in, it can cause separation.
This occurs when you have an alcohol or ethanol-based gasoline that absorbs the water, which means you have a substance that has now separated and moved to the bottom of the gas can.
This is not good for the machine you are putting the gas into as alcohol and water bases don’t burn well, and when they do, they can cause significant damage.
Cleaning An Extra Dirty Can
If your plastic gas can have extra build-up inside, there is a way to clean it. You will need to empty it completely and use your degreasing cleaner and then put either a metal chain or some nuts and bolts into the tank and shake it vigorously.
The metal works as a scrubber for the inside of the gas can. You can also purchase special bendable brushes that are extra long to help you reach the hard to get to places. You can also try aquarium quarts and even gravel but do not use sand.
If using articles like gravel, ensure you completely wash out, so no foreign parts remain.
When you are finished scrubbing, you can empty out whatever you put inside and give the container a good rinse out. You might need to do this several times to get rid of the scum and particles.
Drying Out The Container Completely
Leave the container open and ensure that you dry it out completely. You can do this under the sun as long as it isn’t hot, which will only create more moisture inside the plastic as it sweats.
Some people will put some gasoline inside the tank and swish it around, which helps to dry it out faster.Once you have finished cleaning your gas can and it has completely dried out, you can then put the cap back on and store it, or you can fill it up with gasoline and use it how you normally do.
There are many cleaners on the market perfect for cleaning your plastic gas can, and which one works best for you is based on what was stored in the gas can and how long it has been in there.
Sometimes you will need to repeat the process a few times if the gas can hasn’t been cleaned before or it has been stored with gasoline in it for a very long time.
Cleaning your gas can will ensure your gas is clean and free of debris which will be more efficient when using in your machines.
FAQ About How to Clean A Plastic Gas Can
How To Remove Stubborn Sludge From Plastic Gas Cans?
Use 2 cups of vinegar and 1 cup of baking soda and put them in the gas tank. You now want to fill the container up three-quarters of the way, which will create a great cleaning solution that will break down grime and build up. You can soak the container in the solution overnight.
Can I Clean My Plastic Gas Can With Acetone?
Acetone is a great cleaner to use. It will vaporize very fast. You can add some chains or nuts and bolts to help exfoliate the inside of the can.