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Mrs. Peel

Let's talk... fuel tanks!

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I love to crowd-source homeowner solutions on here! I have (2) somewhat-related conundrums all related to heating my house (home fuel oil, boiler, baseboard heat, btw) and I can't recall bringing this up previously (forgive me if I did, but the problem has since gotten more complicated anyway as you'll see...)

1) I own (4) 5-gallon diesel containers. They saved me a few times, especially when I first bought the house and was on a discount fuel service... and accidentally ran out! Now I'm with a full-service company, but nonetheless, I like knowing that in an emergency I can get some fuel in the tank, and even bleed/restart my boiler if need be. However, these cans are the WORST engineering I've ever seen!! I had one particularly horrible night years ago when my boiler ran out of fuel... and there I was, in freezing rain, in the dark (wee hours of the morning), standing next to my house trying to get diesel fuel into the tank. These bloody containers were big, awkward and heavy and would NOT flow smoothly no matter what I did... it was glug... glug... glug. Maddening. I was out there for a half-hour at least... slowly turning into a human popsicle. I was aching for 2 days! And more recently, I had a new oil tank installed (in a different location in my basement) and due to the slope of the yard the outside spigot now sits even higher than the last tank's spigot. So, I realize there's no way I could ever lift the fuel cans high enough to get them on the fuel pipe, even if the cans were only half-full...I simply don't have the strength... so now, it's a problem that "must" be addressed.  

2) I am also in the process of getting a portable generator at my house (one of the last items I'm checking off on my prepper list - YAY!!). I plan to buy several gas cans for that. But, it seems all fuel cans these days are of this same inefficient, new-fangled "no-spill" (and no release value) design as my diesel cans. I'm afraid of a repeat scene: standing out in howling winds and freezing temps, feeling bitter at each s-l-o-w "glug"... as I try to refill the generator. Seriously, perish the thought! 

When I researched this problem on YouTube, I found out that I am certainly not alone! There were TONS of videos of people BITCHING about the "new" fuel cans and giving various work-arounds. So, there are 2 types of products/solutions that I'm currently eyeballing: 

Battery-operated fuel transfer pumps -  there are multiple brands - Terapump, Harbor Freight, etc. I think this would be an excellent solution for my diesel containers. If the hose was long enough, I could even fill the tank from inside my basement - which would be super-nice! Has anyone used these? Is there a brand you recommend? Here's a link to one if you're not familiar with them:  https://www.amazon.com/TERA-PUMP-Portable-Battery-AutoStop/dp/B00WZX9W86/ref=sr_1_14?dchild=1&keywords=battery+powered+fuel+transfer+pump&qid=1614307764&sr=8-14 - now that my exterior intake pipe is higher, I think this has become a "must have" for the diesel. However, even though they say these are safe for gasoline, I do feel a bit worried about a potential battery spark so close to the gas fumes. Thoughts? Am I overly worried? That brings me to this next option...

E-Z Pour kit - because so many people hate the new fuel can designs, this company came up with a retrofit kit to make your "new" can pour as efficiently as the "old" cans. So, the other option (for the gas cans) is that I buy new cans, but retrofit them from the get-go. https://www.amazon.com/EZ-POUR-40051-Replacement-Spout-White/dp/B00YP3YTXM/ref=sr_1_10?dchild=1&keywords=e-z+nozzle+fuel+tank&qid=1614309285&sr=8-10 Seems crazy to retrofit a brand-new product!... But it is what is is. Has anyone tried these kits?  Are they good? 

Lastly, is there some other gadget I'm not aware of? I tried to find a foot pedal fuel transfer pump, for instance, but couldn't find one... maybe they don't exist? I'm looking for solutions that are simple, that work fast, that eradicate heavy lifting (esp'ly because I could be on slippery surfaces), but that are also highly unlikely to spark a fire. It would be nice if it was under 50 bucks, too, but price is not the driver. I'm more concerned about making these situations more workable. Your suggestions are most welcome! Thanks in advance.

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13 minutes ago, Mrs. Peel said:

I can get some fuel in the tank, and even bleed/restart my boiler

Peel, that you know how to do that, much less what it means.  Sexy. ;)

I'm sorry to say there is no good 5 gallon can solution since the leftards when all hippie on gasoline cans.  We run into the glug glug problem all the time filling mowers.  What we did was drilled air holes in the handles so air can get into the can as the liquid sucks the air out creating a vacuum.  Old fashioned cans used to have holes in them, there was usually a little yellow cap over a nipple somewhere at the top of the can, but they did away with those when the new and improved nozzles came along.  If we are in a hurry, we take the nozzle off and use a funnel.

Diesel has a higher viscosity than gasoline, so it's going to decant slower.

If you have diesel/heating oil already, look into diesel generators.  You don't have to get a giant one, but they are super expensive.  you won't have to worry about keeping fresh gasoline and you will already have a diesel reserve.

Lastly, if you are going the transfer pump rout, why not get a 55gallon drum and put it on wheels.

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Estate sales are great sources for old style fuel cans at give away prices.

Check out https://www.estatesales.net/NJ/Northern-New-Jersey for listings in your area.

Last estate sale I went to they had a bunch of them in the shed, I'm already well stocked so I didn't buy any.

I would suggest several 2.5 gal cans if you don't have the strength for the 5 gal. size.

 

 

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https://www.estatesales.net/NJ/Somerset/08873/2785848

Here is one; check out photo # 205, thats a 2.5 gal Rubbermaid can in the garage, if they have lawnmowers or other power equipment they almost always have gas cans as well.

Hit a few of these and you have more cans then you need and probably lots other stuff too. 

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How about an oil extractor pump? They suck motor oil out the top of your engines for some dumbass cars without drain plugs (looking at you, BMW...) or lazy mechanics. Enthusiast versions can be had with a hand pump or clips to use a car’s 12v

 

Some are quite cheap, you just might have to extend the lines to reach between a fuel can and your tank fill port

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Call the boy toy....I  mean pool boy.  Duh.
 

But seriously.  Maybe something like this?

Put the fuel container on a ladder (4 foot one) so it's off the ground.  I'm sure you could fine one with a longer hose if needed.  

https://www.cabelas.com/shop/en/tera-pump-trep01-2d-battery-powered-fuel-transfer-pump?ds_e=MICROSOFT&ds_c=Shop|Generic|AllProducts|High|SSCCatchAll&msclkid=1354f68ac56e1f3588cf96b3797cffde&gclid=1354f68ac56e1f3588cf96b3797cffde&gclsrc=3p.ds

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If I had to transfer fuel oil often I would definitely get something battery powered.  That said, I know that if I needed one only occasionally in an emergency...the batteries would be dead. I know this to be true. So count on it. I'd opt for a hand powered unit something like this one I found. 

 https://www.amazon.com/Koehler-Enterprises-RA990-Multi-Use-Transfer/dp/B0181EDCZ6/ref=psdc_15707731_t1_B00GW3QM4C?th=1

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Tractor Supply

30 gallons, hand crank.  It's a bit pricey at $500.00, but it's all that and a bag of chips.  Holds enough fuel to keep a genny going for 7 to 14 days depending on how big the genny is and how many hours you run it.

 

1350794?$470$

https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/gas-go-30-gallon-steel-ul-listed-caddy?cm_vc=-10005

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1 hour ago, JackDaWack said:

They had the flip style and seal spout.

Don't quote me on this, but I think Jerry cans are already compliant because of the spring loaded spout.  The main issue with most gas cans, according to the tree huggers, is that many people leave the spout cap off and vapor escapes.  The little yellow vent caps always break off too. 

The whole idea with the new style spouts is that they self close and even have a vapor return tube.  In a perfect world, those spouts would not be a terrible idea, but they suck monkey dick.  They never work and are nearly impossible to operate without spilling gasoline, which defeats the purpose entirely.  Those dumb ass spouts have spilled more gas than the old style ones ever did.  Brilliant!   I bought a can two years ago that the spout actually worked well, but squirrels ruined it.  Those lil bastards love chomping up gas caps on mowers and cans.

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1 hour ago, SmittyMHS said:

yawanna? I just changed the tank on my '87 Buick if you do....lol

that couldn't have been fun.

 

 i've got my 78 futura sitting on the rollback waiting for me to have time to put the new fuel tank in it...........

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19 hours ago, 1LtCAP said:

that couldn't have been fun.

 

 i've got my 78 futura sitting on the rollback waiting for me to have time to put the new fuel tank in it...........

It's starting to be a money pit now. Labor of love I guess. Have fun. 

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fuel tank?
Find the metal , 5 gallon kind
https://www.uline.com/Product/Detail/H-1850R/Safety-Storage/Gas-Can-Type-I-Red-5-Gallon?pricode=WA9292&gadtype=pla&id=H-1850R&gclid=CjwKCAiAm-2BBhANEiwAe7eyFOVWThwB5BkoPS7jlom2HrtVazQHJrnGtoHWvZ9iJ_kjwwxI8hndnRoCeiYQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds
or, drill a hole in the tank opposite the nozzle to allow air in, you must plug this when storing the fuel, but it will help with the glug gluging
the ezpour kit is basically a piece of plastic tubing that replaces the spout/nozzle
if you buy that kit, you only need to buy one, and transfer it to gas cans as you use them

 

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5 hours ago, SmittyMHS said:

It's starting to be a money pit now. Labor of love I guess. Have fun. 

in my mind, the only way a 87 buick is worth a bunch of effort is if it's a grand national....otherwise, pull the ejection lever......

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5 minutes ago, 1LtCAP said:

in my mind, the only way a 87 buick is worth a bunch of effort is if it's a grand national....otherwise, pull the ejection lever......

It's a T Type ...A GN in other then black. :D

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My guess is you will need a transfer pump for your fuel oil since it is up high, A vent in the tank is all you need to cure the Glug Glug. The ez pour kits are great to repair new or old jerry jugs. I like the Rigid spout better than the flex spout the flex spout is nice but large. 

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