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Disposing of old petrol

Posted by TonyP-191937 - Created: 14 years ago
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4 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 4)

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Posted by TonyP-191937 - 14 years ago

I used to think that it oxidises if left a few months in a normal vented car or boat fuel tank and that fuel in the carbs evaporates, leaving a gummy residue, but that if the fuel was kept in an airtight container in a relatively stable environment it would keep fairly well.

Now I'm not so sure, I've heard that the additives in modern unleaded can oxygenate the fuel even in an airtight container, and that if you mix old fuel with new it can cause the new fuel to go off much more quickly.

Still I wonder if it isnt all a modern myth.  Many people would take more than a month to use the fuel in a boat tank if they ran it empty, but often they keep it topped up so they are continually added new fuel to old.

So it looks as if it is OK to use old fuel if it is liberally diluted with new fuel provided it hasn't turned to treacle.


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Posted by MikeP-180526 - 14 years ago

Petrol doesn't go 'stale'.  What can happen is that it becomes contaminated with rust if stored in metal cans, or water if stored in damp conditions.  

If you think that is the case, filter it, and add it a few litres at a time to a nearly full tank of petrol in your car or boat.  At worst it can only marginally impair the performance

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Posted by The_Gentleman - 14 years ago

I managed to get rid of four 45 Gallon drums of old petrol, i bought a Sunseeker with stale petrol in it, getting rid of the petrol prooved difficult! I ended up going to the Shell garage in Port Canto and he took it off me and mixed it into his tanks!! If you ask him he'll probably do the same for you? It's worth a try unless you have the above mentioned Lawnmower!

Good luck!


The Gentleman...

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Posted by RJH-187583 - 14 years ago

It'd go through a lawnmower just lovely.