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Discussion Starter #1
Just spent a couple of hours fixing my TRX420 2007. It cut out and would start after a few minutes and then cut out, gotta be fuel filter thinks me, check youtube and yes the older fuel pump filter is known to clog.
It's a bugger to get at the fuel filter so after a while I start pulling off pipes and am surprised there is no petrol in the supply pipe? Tanks half full...
So after taking the tank off and removing the petrol tap the first thing is the plastic pipe that sits inside the tank totally disintegrated! Plastic literally crumbled! It was unrepairable so I decided to pull the brass pipe from the tank to make it useable.
This is when I found the grey sludge in the fuel tap, its literally like grey putty! Carb cleaner wouldn't touch it so I spent 20 minutes at the kitchen sink with hot water and detergent to clean it out.
I have never seen anything like it?
So, anybody else seen this before of has someone 'dropped' something in the tank?
I'm careful to use clean fuel.....
 

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Yep - it's called alcohol damage - Ethanol in the fuel absorbed water from the atmosphere or from sitting outside in the rain or from condensation formed inside the tank while stored in unheated shelter. The ethanol is highly corrosive - it will soften and expand polystyrene, corrode steel, dissolve soft metals and melt rubber and nylon among other things. Neoprene fuel lines are especially susceptible to damage - it only requires a percentage of alcohol in the gasoline to melt neoprene fuel lines. The OEM fuel line is not neoprene, but many home owner replaces the OEM line with the common braided automotive fuel line.

Use 93 octane non ethanol fuel as recommended and the problem will not re-occur. If using ethanol fuel, don't let it stand more than 21 days - if the vehicle will be in storage more than 30 days drain the fuel system regardless of the fuel used - if it will be in storage more than a year, put two stroke fuel in the tank and run it til it smokes out the exhaust - either run it til all the fuel is gone or drain it, cap the intake and exhaust to keep out atmospheric air and rodents - the oil in the gas will coat & prevent internal corrosion in the tank, carb, cylinder and exhaust.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi, are you saying alcohol damage rotted the plastic parts of the fuel tap or caused the grey sludge?
I’m in the UK so I don’t think we have ethanol in fuel but I will check.
The TRX lives in a barn and gets used very rarely but has been 100% reliable for years so far,......
 

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I didn't even look at your location - Ethanol is a problem here in the US - in the UK, it could be an additive put in the fuel at the distribution point - every retailer (BP, Shell, CITGO, Marathon) has their own formulation and additive package. I'm sure BP formulation in the US is probably different than their formulation for UK and perhaps different again for other countries they market in.

My answer may not apply to you region, but it may be a similar chemical reaction due to the fuel formulation.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I checked and it can contain up to 5% ethanol and next year it goes up to 10% so possibly more problems on the horizon for older fuel systems....
I'll look into fuel stabilizers I think.
Cheers.
Paul.
 
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