How to Clean a Fuel Pump

Gasoline is the most common fuel that propels a motorcycle. The problem with gas is its volatility. After sitting for a long time, it goes bad. That spells trouble for a motorcycle’s intake system. As Motorcyclist’s Justin Dawes says, “A clean fuel system is key to proper operation.”

In a recent article, MC Garage detailed how to clean the fuel pump on a fuel-injected motorcycle.

Drain the Fuel Tank

Use an oil pan or storage bin to dump the gas after you pull the tank. Removing the fuel cap will make pouring as easy as possible. This process will remove most of the gas. As for the rest, remove the fuel pump and it will drain out of the bottom. Shake the tank a bit to extract the last bits of fuel.

Take Apart the Fuel Pump

Taking apart the fuel pump for cleaning is usually straightforward. Still, it’s a good idea to review your manual. Pull the pump apart and clean the fuel strainer. MC Garage recommends cleaning everything that is disassembled. Inspect the fuel regulator to ensure nothing got past the strainer. Pull off and set aside any O-rings before you start spraying with carb or contact cleaner.

Clean or Replace Parts

If the strainer is in bad shape, the best move is to replace it. If that is not an option, clean the strainer, but take great care to avoid damaging it or any of the parts inside the pump.

Next, remove the strainer from the pump and hit it with contact cleaner from the inside. You can also use soap and hot water or a bath in a parts cleaner. Once the strainer is clean, put the fuel pump back together in the reverse order you disassembled it.


Install the pump, making sure the gasket or O-ring is correctly positioned. Reconnect all the connections and fittings.

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