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Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? #5411921 04/24/20 10:42 AM
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Klutch9 Offline OP
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Like many of you, were not driving much lately. In fact, both of our vehicles were filled up 4 weeks ago, and still have about a half tank left. Should I consider adding some sort of fuel stabilizer to the tanks? The gas contains ~10% ethanol FWIW. I have some Sea Foam on hand, which I use to stabilize the ethanol-free fuel for my OPE, and it got me thinking...


'11 Fusion SE 2.5L - 93k miles - HK 0w20 syn, Carquest Blue filter
'08 Sedona LX LWB 3.8L - 149k miles - Havoline HM 5w20, Fram XG filter
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5411941 04/24/20 11:14 AM
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Zaedock Offline
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I don't add any to mine. Not even my Jeep, which hasn't moved since last Fall. IMO, not needed in a sealed EFI system.

Consider how many thousands of vehicles sit on dealer lots, sometimes for a year or more, waiting to be bought.


2019 Escape EB AWD/2016 KIA Optima SXL 2.0L Turbo/2012 F150 Ex-cab 5.0L
1992 YJ "The Heep"/2015 Chrysler 200 Limited
1975 Ford Bronco/1959 Willys CJ5/Tube Rock crawler
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5411952 04/24/20 11:35 AM
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Marco620 Offline
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Originally Posted by Klutch9
Like many of you, were not driving much lately. In fact, both of our vehicles were filled up 4 weeks ago, and still have about a half tank left. Should I consider adding some sort of fuel stabilizer to the tanks? The gas contains ~10% ethanol FWIW. I have some Sea Foam on hand, which I use to stabilize the ethanol-free fuel for my OPE, and it got me thinking...


If you used non ethanol fuel you dont need Seafoam as it contains alcohol. Just keep them full. Non ethanol can last long time.


15' Civic r18, 333,333 mi M1 0w30/5w30 & LG Biotech,Castrol CVT Fluid,Redline Si-1
Dog Whisperer! Honda/Acura nerd; detest ethanol,wind, and anything vegan.


Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5411956 04/24/20 11:44 AM
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bunnspecial Offline
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My MG gets a dose of it at every fill up. That's partially because the system is completely open, and partially because at a given fill up it's hard to say if I'm going to fill it up again in two days or if the next day I'm going to wake up and start to work on a project that ends up taking 3 months. Under ordinary circumstances, I average 1 fill up this month, but with nice weather and nothing else today, it was more toward every couple of days until it went into the shop earlier this week(finally installing an O/D and maybe rings+cam).

New cars-they're sealed up well enough and are also fairly tolerant of less than great fuel. If I knew I was going to park one for a couple of months, I might give it a shot but otherwise I wouldn't. These days, with gas cheap, I do usually top them off once a week, which both keeps the tanks mostly full and also makes sure that they are at least getting some fresh regularly.


2010 Lincoln MKZ-Mobil 1 5W-30
1970 MG MGB Roadster-Valvoline VR-1 20W-50
1974 Austin Marina GT VR-1 20W-50
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5411957 04/24/20 11:48 AM
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zfasts03 Offline
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I put a dose of Star tron in mine. Rather be safe than sorry. Nothing worse than a full tank of stale fuel when I need to depend on the vehicles again.


- 03 Corvette Z06
Amsoil 5w-30 SS
- 07 Honda Accord 2.4L
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- 16 Suburban 5.3L
Amsoil 0w-20 SS, XG10575(16-28 by-pass)
- 18 4Runner TRD Off Road
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Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Marco620] #5411958 04/24/20 11:48 AM
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bunnspecial Offline
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Originally Posted by Marco620
Originally Posted by Klutch9
Like many of you, were not driving much lately. In fact, both of our vehicles were filled up 4 weeks ago, and still have about a half tank left. Should I consider adding some sort of fuel stabilizer to the tanks? The gas contains ~10% ethanol FWIW. I have some Sea Foam on hand, which I use to stabilize the ethanol-free fuel for my OPE, and it got me thinking...


If you used non ethanol fuel you dont need Seafoam as it contains alcohol. Just keep them full. Non ethanol can last long time.


Since I'm on work from home(and soon furlough) I can't do a GC-MS as I usually would to answer the question, but I'd always thought Sta-Bil was isopropyl alcohol rather than ethanol as used in gasoline blends.

There are good reasons as to why IPA is somewhat less likely to "spoil" in gas than ethanol. For one, it's less volatile. For another, if it oxidizes acetone is the "end of the line" whereas ethanol can oxidize to acetic acid.


2010 Lincoln MKZ-Mobil 1 5W-30
1970 MG MGB Roadster-Valvoline VR-1 20W-50
1974 Austin Marina GT VR-1 20W-50
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5411962 04/24/20 11:51 AM
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painfx Offline
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Originally Posted by Klutch9
Like many of you, were not driving much lately. In fact, both of our vehicles were filled up 4 weeks ago, and still have about a half tank left. Should I consider adding some sort of fuel stabilizer to the tanks? The gas contains ~10% ethanol FWIW. I have some Sea Foam on hand, which I use to stabilize the ethanol-free fuel for my OPE, and it got me thinking...


I read or saw a video, where they stated that using Sea Foam does not really help as a fuel stabilizer.

Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5411989 04/24/20 12:51 PM
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Oildudeny Offline
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no you're totally over thinking life at the moment. save your money and time.

Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5412014 04/24/20 01:30 PM
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ZZman Offline
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No, too early to really be stale yet.


2005 Toyota Avalon XLS 3.5 motor
2014 Ford Fusion 2.5 motor
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5412033 04/24/20 02:09 PM
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Before I obtained it, there was a period where my truck was driven once a year - to get inspected and back home. There was actually less than 100 miles between a few inspections it had. Each time it fired right up after sitting a (literal) year. Honestly surprised the little harbor freight trickle charger kept the battery up.


18 Forester 2.5I 6M
00 Jeep XJ
01 F-350 4x4 5M
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5412039 04/24/20 02:19 PM
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dogememe Offline
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I work at an auto parts store and there are two things we're selling... Car batteries and car wash stuff. One because people are letting their cars sit and one because people are bored. Guess what we aren't selling any more of than normal? Fuel stabilizer. Because honestly gas will easily last a few months.


2010 Ford Escape 2.5 ~104K Miles: AMSOIL Signature Series 0W-30, Wix Filter.
2001 Chevy Suburban 5.3 ~292K Miles: Valvoline Maxlife 10W-30, ACDelco Filter.
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5412318 04/24/20 08:57 PM
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Marketing works.


2015 F150 2.7
2018 F350 6.2
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5412670 04/25/20 10:25 AM
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JHZR2 Offline
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I don’t think it will hurt to put a bit of stabil or similar in there. I routinely park some of my cars for months at a time. I try to use stabil or a splash of TCw-3 when I know I’m going to be doing so (eg, for a winter sit in the garage), but dont always remember to do so. No issues.

But it’s a good best practice. Not sure if stabil vs sea foam vs whatever else truly has a “best”, but what you use is perhaps a cross between what you have in stock and what’s best for that application. I’m generally less a fan of introducing lots of new solvent into the tank unless it’s on purpose for cleaning at the end of an OCI. So I prefer stabil or the tcw oil, which I understand includes some stabilizer capability.

Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: Klutch9] #5413001 04/25/20 04:44 PM
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another Todd Offline
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If it's a sealed system, like virtually every vehicle built in the last 30 years, then you don't need stabilizer because there is no exchange of air in and out of your tank. Fuel will last for many years in a SEALED container or fuel system. Outdoor power equipment for the most part does not have a sealed system so you would be wise to use stabilizer in those things. Boats are not sealed systems, so stabilize those.


2017 Ford Escape 2.0
2002 GMC Yukon
2008 Yamaha Rhino 700 FI
2010 Itasca Meridain/Freightliner Cummins 6.7 non DEF
Re: Using fuel stabilizer in our vehicles now? [Re: another Todd] #5413288 04/25/20 11:16 PM
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Originally Posted by another Todd
If it's a sealed system, like virtually every vehicle built in the last 30 years, then you don't need stabilizer because there is no exchange of air in and out of your tank. Fuel will last for many years in a SEALED container or fuel system. Outdoor power equipment for the most part does not have a sealed system so you would be wise to use stabilizer in those things. Boats are not sealed systems, so stabilize those.



Fair point. Assuming it’s pretty full, minimal air headspace. That’s not always the case.

As I recall, gasoline gums form from the oxidation of certain constituents.

Logic would then dictate perhaps that stabilizers are better suited for summertime storage if you think your tank will be less than full for an extended period.

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