Rankedgenerators is audience-supported. When you buy through links on this site, we may earn an affiliate commission that we use for site maintenance. Learn more


How to Drain Gas from Generator? – Quick Fix

How to Drain Gas from Generator
Written by Jamie Masterson

It’s important to drain gasoline from your generator if you’re not going to use it in a couple of weeks. That way, no dirt or gum buildup can reduce the fuel quality and the machine can keep working for long.

On the contrary, leaving fuel inside the generator for a long time can damage the internal components by malfunctioning and you’ll experience some expensive repairs down the road.

That’s what today we’re discussing the process of draining gas from your generator safely step-by-step.

We’ll also provide some tips that’ll increase your safety during the draining process.

How To Drain Gasoline From Generator

Tools You Need

  • Wrench/socket wrench
  • Screwdriver
  • Collection containers
  • Paper towel/damp cloth
  • Pliers (optional)

Step 1: Open the gas tank

The first step would be to take your generator to a well-ventilated area, preferably outside your home and on a flat surface. Once the generator is in place, open the cap of the gas tank to create sufficient airflow.

Open the gas tank

However, it’s essential for you to go through your user manual beforehand for precise instructions and guidance to locate different parts of your generator. This will make your job way easier.

Step 2: Locate the valve switch

Now, locate the fuel valve switch of your specific generator model and turn it on the “ON” position. Make sure that you can access the fuel lines easily.

Locate the valve switch

Step 3: Remove the plastic cover over the fuel lines

Some models come with a plastic cover, usually secured with a couple of large bolts. Removing the cover will give you easy access to the fuel lines. Use the socket or normal wrench to remove the plastic cover.

Remove the plastic cover over the fuel lines

You may need to push the valve switch through the cover to remove it perfectly. Once the cover is off, you need to set the fuel valve off to make sure you don’t get any fuel entering where it isn’t supposed to.

Step 4: Remove the aluminum clip

The next step is to pinch and remove the aluminum clip that isn’t connected with the gas tank. Keep a paper towel or damp cloth in case some fuel comes out of the tube you are trying to remove.

This step is crucial. Make sure you don’t disconnect the tube that runs to the gas tank or fuel will pour out everywhere and that can’t be good. Use pliers to pinch the seal out if the seal seems too tightly secured.

Step 5: Place a collection container

It’s time to collect the fuel. Take a collection tube that is large enough to hold all the gas inside your fuel tank. Usually, A generator fuel tank holds about 5-10 gallons of gasoline. Using a gas can is the wise choice if you want to store your gasoline without any unpleasant consequences.

Step 6: Turn the fuel valve on

Once the collection container (gas can) is in place, turn the fuel valve back on and let all the gas drain out into the container. You can tilt your generator a bit if you think there might be a bit of gas left in the tank.

Turn the fuel valve on

Once all the fuel is drained into the container, reconnect the lid on the fuel tank and reattach the cover securely in its place.

Step 7: Collect fuel from the carburetor

Don’t forget about the carburetor since there will be a small amount of fuel left in it. Locate the screw on the base of the carburetor and collect all the fuel that is inside the carburetor into another gas can.

Collect fuel from the carburetor

If you face any trouble locating the drain bolt of your carburetor, see the user manual for specific instructions. Use the screwdriver and turn the bolt/screw on the left to loosen it.

Step 8: Put the screws back on

Once all the gas is out of the carburetor, wipe the area surrounding the drain hole with a paper towel/damp cloth to make sure you don’t have any fuel spill around.

There should only be a small amount of fuel left in the carburetor. Once all the gasoline is out, reattach the screw securely in its place, and you’re done.

Do you need to drain gas from the generator?

Do you need to drain gas from the generator

Every machine needs regular maintenance, especially the machines that can become potentially dangerous or malfunction easily. Your generator is no exception.

Generators work with gasoline to produce electricity, both of which can become potentially dangerous if not taken care of properly.

Your generator needs fresh, stabilized gas every time. Leaving gas inside the generator can cause a variety of problems, including damaging the inner part by dirt or gum buildup.

That is why it is essential to drain all the gas from your generator properly if you don’t intend to use the generator for a long time. This can save you from costly repairs down the road.

Safety tips when draining gasoline from generator

  • Always go through and understand your user manual before making any adjustments
  • Never drain your generator while the engine is running
  • Keep fire-generating items like cigarettes, sparks, and flames away from your generator
  • Keep your children and pets away from the generator
  • Let the engine cool completely before even touching the machine
  • Don’t mess with the generator in wet weather conditions
  • Empty the generator off fuel if you don’t intend to use it for more than a couple of weeks


Q. Can I put gas in a generator while it’s running?

No, absolutely not. Never put gas or attempt to dry the fuel tank while the generator is running or the engine is hot. Spilled gas can ignite if it comes in contact with the hot engine and that won’t be good for you or the people nearby.

Turn off the engine and let it cool completely before you make any adjustments.

Q. Do I have to use ethanol-free gas in a generator?

Yes, preferably. You need to use clean, fresh, and unleaded gasoline on your generator. The fuel must have a rating of 87 octane/87 AKI, and up to 10% ethanol is acceptable. Never use E85 or gas/oil mix to avoid any unpleasant consequences.

We recommend you use non-ethanol-premium fuel.

Q. How do I get gas back into my carburetor?

You don’t have to do anything. Just reassemble everything, fill up the fuel tank, and start the engine. The carburetor will be automatically filled with gasoline once the engine starts working.

About the author

Jamie Masterson

With decade-long experience as a generator technician, Jamie has worked with USA’s top generator manufacturers and suppliers as an independent contractor.

The long years of service to the industry has taught Jamie the ins and outs of troubleshooting, repairing, and maintaining all kinds of generators in home, industrial and outdoor settings.

Jamie thinks this platform is a great opportunity to share his tips and tricks with you so you can make the most of such power equipment for better living.

Leave a Comment