Drano In A Gas Tank: What REALLY Happens?!

When you have a clogged kitchen drain or even a bathroom in your place, Drano is one immediate solution for that. But what happens if Drano is put in a gas tank? Let us find out.

So what really happens if you put Drano in a gas tank? Drano cannot be dissolved in gasoline. As a result, it settles on the bottom and causes the engine to sputter.

A clogged bathroom or a kitchen drain can be solved with just a Dano. However, as effective as it was in the clogging problems in your home, it can cause dangers and issues. If Drano is not used correctly, it can be destructive, especially on automobiles. 

A lot of people are putting Drano in a gas tank. This can be a prank, or they might want to ruin a car’s engine but putting a Drano in a gas tank serves no good result. 

If you want your car to remain sound and work, do not put Drano in your gas tank. But what happens if you put Drano in your gas tank? Let us find out.

Drano In A Gas Tank

What Happens If You Put Drano In A Gas Tank?

Putting a Drano in a gas tank is never a good idea. It can clog your carburetor and can do many more damages. However, there are different types of Drano or drain cleaners. 

With that, the result will depend on which Drano is used. There is also the liquid Drano and the crystal. Both of these have the same result. 

The Drano will not be good if it will get into the engine. You do not want the Drano, either crystal or liquid, to get into your engine. It would help if you did all things to avoid this. 

Putting a Drano in your gas tank is almost the same as putting water in your gas tank. So now, let us talk about the short-term effects and long-term effects of putting Drano in your gas tank.   

Short Term Effects

The short-term effect of both crystal Drano and liquid Drano is the disturbance of the car not starting and the sputtering. If there is Drano in your gas tank, the Drano will settle in the bottom. 

Drano and gasoline do not mix well.  As a result, it will cause your engine not to start and sputter.

Long Term Effects

The long-term effect is corrosion. If the Drano will sit too long in the gas tank and go through the engine, there will be corrosion on the car’s components. It would be best to have this removed as soon as possible.

Can You Pour Drano Into Your Gas Tank?

Yes, you can pour Drano in your gas tank, but you must not do it. Other people do it when they prank someone, and some people would pour Drano into the gas tank of a specific car because they want to destroy the engine of that car. 

So it would help if you did not do it. It can cause damages to your vehicle, and the repair will cost you money. There are two types of drain cleaner. It is caustic and acidic. 

Both of these two will cause severe damages to modern engines. This is also most common to rail fuel systems.

The nature of the chemicals is to dissolve oils, and oils are what you need to have your engine started. So, as a result, if you start the car and drive the car, and have a drain cleaner in your gas tank, it will ruin the fuel and the gas tank. It is not only your fuel system that gets damaged. 

It will go right through the engine oil and then cause wear and tears to the bearing surfaces of the engines. So if you think your gas tank has Drano, immediately do something about it.

Will Drano And Gasoline Explode?

Not necessarily. The effect of the Drano will depend on what kind of drain cleaner you will use. The old products had sodium hydroxide in them, and that is very corrosive. 

It won’t be good to pump it into your engine. Though the possibility of an explosion is not erased, it will be unlikely. If your gas tank is empty, it will likely cause corrosion in the entire gas tank. 

The Drano will not mix very well with the fuel. The result can be that the Drano will not mix very well with the fuel, and the Drano will sink at the bottom of the gas tank. 

If in case you will have a Drano in your gas tank, immediately empty your gas tank. You have to remove your gas tank from your car, and then you will have to clean it very thoroughly.

drano in gas tank

Does Drano Ruin A Car Engine?

Yes. Drano can ruin your car engine. The first thing is that the drain cleaner does not melt in the gasoline. 

What would happen is that the Drano would go in the bottom of the gas tank. The Drano will stay there at the bottom. If the Drano gets picked up by the fuel pump, it will not burn. 

As a result, your engine will sputter. If the Drano is out of the fuel system, your engine might run regularly again. You need to remove it as soon as possible because if the Drano still sits there, it will start to cause corrosion and rusting.

How Long Does It Take For Drano To Destroy An Engine?

It will be based on the amount of Drano. If you pour many Drano into the gas tank and drive the car afterward or even start the engine, you will destroy the engine faster. If you put a small amount, the engine can survive a bit longer.

Can Drano Be Detected In A Gas Tank?

Yes, it can be detected. Drano and fuel do not mix well. If you look close enough, you’ll be able to tell the difference. Notice at the bottom of the gas tank because that is where the Drano will settle.

What To Do If You Think You Have Drano In Your Gas Tank?

Do not drive your car at all costs. If you are already driving, stop the car immediately. You have to drain your gas tank. You can also call a mechanic to help you.


In summary, putting a Drano in a gas tank can do some severe damage. It could damage your car’s injectors, fuel pump, and engine. 

It would depend on what is in the drain cleaner. Ensure to remove all the Drano and do not drive your car if there is still Drano in it.



Image credits – Canva

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My name is Hank, and I've been in the automotive industry for 27 years. I've been working in my own auto repair shop for the last 13 years, and now I want to help you here, on my blog. Let me know if you have any questions. Read more