I've been talking to a lot of Arctic Cat owners lately that have a leaking fuel tank on their Arctic Cat 600/800 ZR & ZL models as well as a few Thundercats. The leaks have been going on for years, some people have gotten Arctic Cat to replace the tank (no labor coverage), others have just fixed the leak.
This is no new topic on Arctic Cat gas tank leaks, I just wanted to clarify where the leak can be found as I have run across a lot of people who think their tanks are leaking at the seam where the filler neck connects to the gas tank, this is not the case! The Arctic Cat fuel tank leak is actually on the filler neck itself. It is common for these models to crack just below the threads.
The photo above is one of my sleds that just developed this crack. As you can see the crack is just over half way around the filler neck, below the threads but not at the seam where it meets the fuel tank. I was able to grab the filler neck and bend it upwards enough to get piece of packaging in there.
Why do these Arctic Cat gas tanks leaks?
Some say it is due to over tightening the fuel tank cap, some say the fuel tank/filler neck leaks are due to manufacturer's defects, other say the leak in the filler neck is due to leaving the gas pump nozzle unattended and hanging in the wide hole. The pressure from the weight of the fuel pump nozzle cracks the filler neck. Whatever the cause, there is nothing more frustrating than having fuel spilling out while you're riding your sled, getting gas all over you!
So how do you fix the gas leak in these Arctic Cat sleds?
I had a few failed attempts at fixing the gas leak. As you can see if the first photo above, I tried to use JB Weld to fix it. While The JB weld held out ok on the outside, on the inside it peeled right off after a week of being subjected to just the gas fumes. We didn't even ride the sled so no gas came in contact with it, just the fumes. So JB Weld might not be the best fix for the Arctic Cat fuel tank filler neck leak.
After I noticed the JB Weld peeled off, I left the JB Weld on the outside and repaired the gas leak with the another method (below).
What you will need:
(You should be able to get these products at just about any hardware store. If you want the same exact products I used to fix this, we can get them for you and mail it to you. Click Here To Order).
Note: The parts listed below are for models with a fuel filler neck that is 2-11/16" inside diameter. For other size fuel tank filler necks you will need to find the correct size sleeve. For example, some models have a 2-7/8" inside diameter filler neck.
Since the fuel tank filler neck inside diameter is approx. 2-11/16" I used a 2" (inside diameter) PVC coupler which means you will need to sand down 1/16" between the inside of the fuel tank filler neck and the coupler itself to make this fit. Different manufacturers of the coupler may give you a different outside diameter so be sure to check before you buy one. You will use this as a sleeve to strengthen the gas tank filler neck and help seal the crack.
You will also need 150 grit sand paper. You can start with a coarser grit but you should end up with a 150 or 200 grit.
You will also need an adhesive called "Seal-All" which is gas and oil resistant.
Arctic Cat Fuel Tank Filler Neck Repair Instructions:
First, getting the gas and oily residue off of the surface to be repaired is very important! I used rubbing alcohol to do this, then wiped it with a paper towel and let it dry well.
Take the 150 grit sand paper and sanded the inside of the gas tank filler neck surface really well.
Then sand the outside of the PVC sleeve. This is going to take some time since you have about 1/16" of an inch to sand down. Don't be tempted to use a grinding wheel or other power tool. You will want to check the fit often to see if you're getting close to having the sleeve fit in the tank. You will want this to fit snug, but not too tight. As a rule of thumb, it shouldn't be so tight that it gets stuck in the filler neck and hard to get back out. It also shouldn't be too lose where it falls in the filler neck on its own. You should need to push it in by hand with a little pressure. Once you have the sanding done, the hard part is over. Wipe the sleeve and the fuel tank filler neck to remove any dust particles from the sanding process.
Now take the Seal-All and coat the entire outside of the sleeve with it. It sets up fast you will will want to do this quickly. Once it's coated with Seal-All slide the sleeve down until it seats on the small ridge (if your tank has one) near the bottom of the fuel tank filler neck making sure that the sleeve is covering the crack. If it doesn't seat on the ridge it is more important that it is covering the crack in the filler neck. Be sire to wipe off any excess Seal-All. If you get Seal-All on the top of the filler neck where the gas cap gasket seats and it hardens, use sandpaper to remove.
Also, you can apply more Seal-All on the outside of the filler neck on the crack. After the Seal-All adhesive dries, apply extra coats on the top and bottom of the sleeve and on the outside of the filler neck.
The best part of using Seal-All is that unlike most other adhesives it dries faster in COLDER temperatures! That makes Seal-All perfect for the Arctic Cat Fuel Tank Filler Leak Repair!