clogged gas tank on chipper-shredder


I have an old Craftsman 8-hp chipper-shredder with a plastic gas tank. A valve screws to the bottom of the tank. From there a foot of hose leads to a transparent filter, from which another foot of hose leads to the carburetor.
When I try to start for the first time in the day there may be no gas in the filter. When I'm using it it may shut down with no gas in the filter. Taking the cap off the tank doesn't help. Unfastening the fuel line and using a syringe to blow are into the fuel tank will get the fuel going again.
I assume something sometimes blocks the screen in the tank. I can't get a good look at the screen. In the past, I have put water in the tank, shaken it, and dumped it. That didn't help. With the tank off the shredder, gas and water drained with no trouble.
Has somebody cured a similar problem?
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A couple isolated th oughts.
Maybe the valve is the problem? Since the valve unscrews from the tank, sometimes there is a screen on the valve. Oven cleaner does a nice job stripping varnish and stuff from the inside of Tecumseh carburetors (found this out by trial and error). Might work on valves, and fuel screens.
Might have to take the tank off, take the valve out and spray oven cleaner into the hole left by the valve you just removed.
When you finish, rinse well with hot water to remove the sodium hydroxide, byproducts, etc. And let dry thoroughly.
Hope that helps.
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Christopher A. Young
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put clean gravel in tank and shake well that will clean debris from its inside
remove the valve before hand and use carb cleaner on it
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

It looks as if gravel would be hard to shake out of this tank. It's 6.5" from the top opening to the bottom. The collar goes down 2". 1.5" farther down is a horizontal baffle with a hole.
Through that hole I can see part of the drain screen. It seems to be metal mesh about 3/4" in diameter. It must have been fixed in place before the top half of the tank was molded on.
The tank and valve can drain fast, but sometimes I have to blow air through the drain. I can't account for it unless there are tiny loose particles in there a little heavier than gasoline and big enough to clog the screen. If they would dissolve in lye, Stormin Mormon's idea might work. Not having lye on hand, I twice filled the tank with water and shook it out the top into a pan. I didn't see any suspended particles. I'll see if it's better.
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Doghouse wrote:

since you can see the screen can you poke a hole in the mesh?
then put a in line filter on the gas line after first flushing the tank to hopefully remove any debris.
appears your tank is supposed to be disposable when the filter clogs:(
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

There is an inline filter and I'm thinking of poking a hole in the screen from below, through the drain. It appears that the screen serves no purpose but to keep debris out of the valve.
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