Tackling fuel tank replacement

Published on October 5th, 2023

by Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt Sailing News
I had been battling trouble with a Yamaha 130 outboard, and while countless mechanics would give me short term fixes, it took too long to recognize the problem was fouled fuel.

After replacing the fuel tank (and engine), it felt like I had just bought my 17-foot whaler for a second time, but it’s hard to put a price on peace of mind. This story from the Practical Sailor may cost you some money, but if boating is what you do… do it:

October is the time of year when the procrastinating catches up to us. The big projects we avoided all summer stare us in the face. Do nothing, and you risk a summer wasted pulling epoxy from your hair instead of sailing. If your boat is 20 years old or older, a fuel tank replacement—a bear of a project, even in ideal circumstances-might be that project you’re postponing. If it is, well, you’re in luck, because we’ve got a fair bit of information to help guide you through the process.

Several years ago, marine consultant and technical writer Steve D’Antonio did an extensive article for us on this topic, Diesel Fuel Tank Replacement. The following excerpt from that article deals explicitly with aluminum, but there are other options. – Full report

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