Storage and fuel aging
Most common fuels will start to evolve after two or three months and not in a good way unfortunately. Whether it be in a ten liter jerrycan, a fifty liter reservoir or a ten-thousand liter tank, this degradation is inevitable and will continue.
→ Evaporation: fuels constantly create vapors (you can notice that simply by taking a sniff at your vehicle's tank next time you refill) and this here is a matter of volatility. The immediate consequence of this volatility is evaporation and it is crucial that these gaseous vapors be evacuated through the blowholes. But if gaseous vapors can be let out then outside air can enter as well.
→ Oxidation: When coming into contact, the fuel's surface and outside air create an oxidation reaction with the oxygen. This will create polymerization particles or tar-like rubber. This will result in the fuel smelling different and its color changing as well as a lower cetane rating.
WARNING! The poorer a fuel’s quality is originally, the worse they will get with age.
Using these kinds of fuels will quickly lead to your engines getting damaged. This is often true for smaller engines for gardening (lawn-mowers, hedge-trimmers, …), old cars, snowmobiles in the summer and jet-skis in the winter, small generators, etc. More broadly, all engines that are used irregularly or seasonally are subject to fuel aging issues.
Moreover, if you fail to store your fuel properly you add your own weaknesses to the inherent causes of fuel degradation.
→ Your fuel's storage container
We must never store diesel, petrol or a mixture in any random container. The material of which your jerrycan is made, which would usually be plastic, must invariably be compatible with the fuels. Choose HDPE - High-Density Polyethylene over all else and forgo all jerrycans, bottles and other containers previously used for alimentary-liquids definitively. Choose opaque or translucent with UV penetration dampeners.
Over time, packaging that haven’t been adapted will create all sorts of microscopic materials through chemical reactions that will spoil the stored fuel and in turn damage engine components (pumps, filters, valves, pistons and segments, carburetors…) and the consequences are just as you would expect.
The sealing for your jerrycan for petrol or diesel must be in excellent condition and perfectly airtight.
→ Your fuels' storage location
Ideally your jerrycan for fuel or the mixture for your lawn-mower or your beautiful old car must be stored away from moisture and light, even if it is opaque. Avoid places with air circulation and frequent or large thermal shifts.
Of course, this isn’t a Bordeaux Grand Cru. We are not concerned with the price of the fuel stored in open air garages all year long but with the financial consequences that will have for the engine it will power.
The solution: an effective fuel additive!
There are plenty of additives sometimes with promises of unobtainable results. Choosing a good additive, when possible one that is not made of chemicals, will grant your fuel greater resistance against all these inconveniences.
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