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I have a gas tank that is leaking a few drips at a time. It doesn't seem like much of a problem except when the tank is at half full or past, and I can quickly lose 2-3 gallons overnight from the dripping.

I looked under the car and tried to tape the leak shut as a temporary fix last night with no luck. The tape was too wet from the gasoline.

I am letting it drain so I can cover it with something even as a temporary fix, but I want to know if there is a good sealant anyone recommends using and how it should be used on a vehicle with a leak like this.

I plan on letting the tank drain so the dripping stops. Like I said, it's a very small leak, so when there is only a quarter of a tank, it doesn't drip. I can't fill it up though and it's very frustrating.

TLDR: Gas tank has rust damage and is leaking. How can I seal it and what should I use to seal it?

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    Not answering your question, but my experience with leaks due to rust is that I always ended up replacing the tank. It could be a skill issue, but I wouldn't even bother trying to fix it. – George Dec 5 '15 at 19:34
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    Agree with @George. Depending on the vehicle, tanks are relatively cheap. The main problem with rust is, if it's leaking through in one place, you can bet there are 20 other places which are ready to take its place once you have the original place fixed. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Dec 5 '15 at 19:53
  • Right, only problem is I basically have no money to get this fixed right now. – Android Bro Dec 5 '15 at 20:10
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    Another reason to repalce it as soon as you have money is safety. You do not want to get in an accident when the integrity of your fuel tank is in doubt. – Hennes Dec 6 '15 at 13:33
  • Thanks for all the good info guys I will share it with my husband who has been fighting with the gas tank on his truck for about a year now. I'm sure one of these Solutions will work. – Sheila May 2 '17 at 12:24
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I agree with Paulster2 and George also, but when you can't afford the new tank, a good fix might be a product like JB Weld or some similar product. I fixed a pinhole in a 135 gallon slip tank about 4 years ago with the JB. Still holding. Just do a good job of preparation, sandpaper or whatever you got and try it. Nothing to lose. Hope it works for you.

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If you have no money, the simplest way to get it fixed is to use a stainless metal screw (or galvanized if you cannot find stainless). Simply screw it into where the hole is at. When you insert the screw, the metal of the tank will form around the screw. This is an "old timers trick". Back in the day when a tank would get some water in it (because of bad gas), the water would settle to the bottom of the tank (water being lighter than gasoline), a person would drill a small hole at the lowest most point of the tank and let the water flow out. Then you'd screw a small metal screw up into the tank to seal the hole. All I can say is, it works.

This will plug the hole with minimal stress. Most liquid or epoxy type glues/fillers can be washed away, diluted, or damaged by gasoline which is a pretty good solvent in its own right.

Needless to say, if you go this approach, you'll probably still want to plan to replace your tank at some point as there will be more holes to follow.

  • Problem is it isn't a hole. It's more of a rust crack. I think this would actually make it worse. – Android Bro Dec 10 '15 at 14:55
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I recently repaired a tank with a similar situation. This tank had several holes. it seems that the tank had been welded and spatter from the welding landed on the tank causing multiple micro holes. I emptied the tank, sanded the area really well, cleaned the area with alcohol and used a good amount of Quick Steel from my local Auto Parts Store. I kneaded the epoxy paste until lit was nice and soft and then used a metal scraper to spread the tank with a nice even coat. I let it cure for a couple of hours and that's it. so far it's been 1 month and no leaks nor any signs of any possible returns.

  • How about a follow up please Sam Rosario, so if I do the same I have an idea of how long it will last. – user23347 Oct 25 '16 at 1:45

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