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Fuel Tank problem - I need help


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I'm working on my Daughter's 77 Celica Fastback (RA28) and it seems the pick-up fuel line/pipe has a blockage in it. I've tried blowing compressed air back into the tank via both the pick-up and return lines and whilst the 'return' line is all clear the blockage is completely stopping air entering the tank via the 'pick-up' line. I've removed the sender unit from the top of the tank, which creates a small observation hole. I've tried using a fairly thick fuse wire to clear the blockage along with WD40, and more recently automotive rust removing acid. I've also tried using coat-hanger wire to come back up from inside the tank (but that doesn't come back up far enough), and I've even tried using a high-pressure water hose directed straight into the hooked end of the pick-up line - but not a drop emerged out the top. I forced a section of coat hanger wire into the pick-up line from the top and was just about to give it a whack with a mallot when I had the unnerving thought that there might be a gauze filter or a one-way valve in the pick-up line?? I've tried checking the internet for schematics - all to no avail. Can anyone tell me if there is a valve or filter in these fuel lines and how can I clear out the blockage? I'm going to try running a fuel hose into a jerry can to see if the engine will fire - it seemed like it wanted to before I started this mess - but I figure if there's a blockage in the fuel tank I need to get that clear then work back towards the engine. I'm no mechanic but I'm keen to try to work this out for my daughter. She's just turned 18 and has sold a great little '85 Celica that she bought as her first car for this one because it's much more of a classic. I've previously owned two TA22's and I think she's made a good choice, but if I don't start the engine soon my wife will be telling us both "I told you so." Can anyone tell me whether there is a valve or filter in the line? Or do I just give it a whack with the wire and hope for the best?

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Have you tried attaching a power drill to the wire and if the drill has a hammer action on it, use that function. It might chip away little fragments at a time.

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I hadn't thought of that. I'll have to go looking for some wire that is strong enough for that yet supple enough to bend with the pipe. I really need to know whether there's a valve or gauze filter in there before I do too much though. Thanks for the tip.

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My daughter (RA28 Girl) and I took the tank down to our local Toyota Dealer at Benalla, and one of their mechanics, Brad (top bloke), took one look at it and said there wouldn't be a filter inside the pipe. When they came out there was a 'sock' or similar filter over the outside of the intake pipe apparently - but this one didn't have it anymore. With that information in hand we went to the local hardware store looking for some wire that would do the job with a drill. And here I have to thank Ozzcaddy very much for that little gem of advice because we bought some 3mm 'wire rope' and used it with the drill as a sort of 'rota-router'. About 5 minutes of easy drilling later I had a breakthrough. A further little tip is to use the drill in reverse with the wire rope to start with then use it at a slower speed in forward and the rope opens up to create an ideal tool for cleaning the inside walls of the pipe. If you pull the end out past the bend you have to replace the piece of wire rope to get it back down and start again. But after a couple of goes with some WD40 sprayed in for good measure the job was well and truly done. Thanks Ozzcaddy & Brad. After days of frustration the right advice had it done in no time.

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