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Rotating out the winter generator gasoline #5430970 05/16/20 09:20 PM
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JimPghPA Online Content OP
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I put some of the winter generator gasoline in my vehicle today to use it up before the heat of summer gets here.

One of the down sides of being prepared for an outage with a gasoline fueled generator is the rotation of fuel.

I had 20 gallons of high-test gasoline stored in eight 2.5 gallon plastic gas cans with a regular dose of red Sta-Bil, for use in my 2,200 Watt Generac inverter generator during the winter if it were needed. I only used about one gallon for one outage and the power was back on before that tank of gas ran out. The fuel is stored outside on a cement pad with a roof where the sun can not shine on it, and under a tarp. In the past I have seen the red plastic gas cans bulge some when the lighter hydrocarbons in winter gas turn into gas vapor and create pressure in the spring, but I was surprised at how much these were bulging. If they bulge this much at only 75 F it will be good to get it use up before the real heat of summer gets here.

There really is a big difference between summer gasoline and winter gasoline. I can see why some cars with big engines and a lot of heat under the hood use to sometimes have vapor lock from gasoline evaporating too much.

I used a number 4 size coffee filter in the Pep-boys gray long fuel funnel with the lip that helps hold fuel on the half of the top of it that is oriented towards the ground when I put the fuel in my car today. I saw a couple of the small flying insects around the funnel while the gas was going in but I was surprised at how many were in the coffee filter in the funnel when I was done adding the fuel. A coffee filter in a fuel funnel is a good idea.

I only store a few gallons in the summer. Even if there is a outage I should be able to travel to get gas in the summer. It is not like a winter storm where the roads can be unusable for a couple of days, and here in Pittsburgh PA we do not have to be ready for a hurricane like some of the southern states. In late June when the stations are sure to have summer gas I'll get a few gallons and add some Sta-Bil.


Boy will I be happy when ALL vehicles on public roads are autonomous.


JimPghPa

Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5430975 05/16/20 09:29 PM
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spasm3 Offline
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I have about 10 gallons left, bought december. Burned some in the mowers. I think the rest will go in one of the cars. I generally keep about 15-20 gallons on hand during the winter. Not as much during the summer. Outages are usually shorter then for me.


13 elantra 84k 5w30 synpwr
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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5430978 05/16/20 09:31 PM
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javacontour Offline
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I've never had issues starting my generator in the summer using the gas I filled it with the previous October.

I usually swap out my gas in October, putting the Stabil treated gas from the generator in the Grand Marquis and refilling the generator with winter blend Stabil dosed gas.

I figure Winter gas is easier to start in the summer than the other way around, so I just do one swap a year. Usually I'm winterizing the mower and weed wacker and leaf blower around the same time, so it's a few hours on an October afternoon to get it all done.


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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431002 05/16/20 10:23 PM
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I am not worried about the generator starting in the summer, but I do not trust the plastic fuel cans to hold winter gas if the ambient gets near 100 F. You should see how much they bulge at only 75 F.

Last edited by JimPghPA; 05/16/20 10:26 PM.

Boy will I be happy when ALL vehicles on public roads are autonomous.


JimPghPa

Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431018 05/16/20 10:49 PM
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Snagglefoot Offline
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What was the ambient temp when you filled and sealed it? Much of the bulge is just from the temp change. You could could vent them and re-seal them.


If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: Snagglefoot] #5431028 05/16/20 11:09 PM
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JimPghPA Online Content OP
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Originally Posted by Snagglefoot
What was the ambient temp when you filled and sealed it? Much of the bulge is just from the temp change. You could could vent them and re-seal them.



Good idea, I did not think about the air in the cans expanding with temperature, even though they are 2.5 gallon cans and I did fill them them to exactly 2.5 gallons each. I do not remember exactly but it was approximately 60 F when I filled them. If you really want to get technical about it the barometric pressure at fill and today could also enter into it.

I will vent and reseal them tomorrow, but I will still use the winter fuel up before the hottest days of summer get here.

Thanks for the suggestion.


Boy will I be happy when ALL vehicles on public roads are autonomous.


JimPghPa

Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431034 05/16/20 11:48 PM
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Chris142 Offline
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I can see the San Andreas fault from my front door. I keep 30 gallons of gas at home. I put a date on the can and rotate them out every 3-4 months


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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431045 05/17/20 12:24 AM
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2010Civic Offline
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Why couldn't you just go get gas if you need it? Let the gas station store it for you.


2010 Honda Civic LX
Valvoline SynPower 5w-20 - Napa Gold oil filter
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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: 2010Civic] #5431081 05/17/20 05:16 AM
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Danno Offline
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Originally Posted by 2010Civic
Why couldn't you just go get gas if you need it? Let the gas station store it for you.

When the power goes out, no gas is pumped at gas stations. The pumps are powered by electricity. Haven't seen a gas station with back up gens.
No power, and no heat is not fun at - 25 F.


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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431083 05/17/20 05:43 AM
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dave123 Offline
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I would be definitely storing that amount of fuel in a steel preferably lined drum. I’d go the full year and only use the summer blend and swap out in fall.

Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431100 05/17/20 06:19 AM
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Rob_Roy Offline
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Originally Posted by JimPghPA
I put some of the winter generator gasoline in my vehicle today to use it up before the heat of summer gets here.

One of the down sides of being prepared for an outage with a gasoline fueled generator is the rotation of fuel.

I had 20 gallons of high-test gasoline stored in eight 2.5 gallon plastic gas cans with a regular dose of red Sta-Bil, for use in my 2,200 Watt Generac inverter generator during the winter if it were needed. I only used about one gallon for one outage and the power was back on before that tank of gas ran out. The fuel is stored outside on a cement pad with a roof where the sun can not shine on it, and under a tarp. In the past I have seen the red plastic gas cans bulge some when the lighter hydrocarbons in winter gas turn into gas vapor and create pressure in the spring, but I was surprised at how much these were bulging. If they bulge this much at only 75 F it will be good to get it use up before the real heat of summer gets here.

There really is a big difference between summer gasoline and winter gasoline. I can see why some cars with big engines and a lot of heat under the hood use to sometimes have vapor lock from gasoline evaporating too much.

I used a number 4 size coffee filter in the Pep-boys gray long fuel funnel with the lip that helps hold fuel on the half of the top of it that is oriented towards the ground when I put the fuel in my car today. I saw a couple of the small flying insects around the funnel while the gas was going in but I was surprised at how many were in the coffee filter in the funnel when I was done adding the fuel. A coffee filter in a fuel funnel is a good idea.

I only store a few gallons in the summer. Even if there is a outage I should be able to travel to get gas in the summer. It is not like a winter storm where the roads can be unusable for a couple of days, and here in Pittsburgh PA we do not have to be ready for a hurricane like some of the southern states. In late June when the stations are sure to have summer gas I'll get a few gallons and add some Sta-Bil.



Sounds like a good plan to me. I also keep about 20 gallons of generator gas through the winter. I burn mine up in the lawn mower and my F350 about this time of year.


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2016 Ford Expedition XLT
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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431120 05/17/20 06:53 AM
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I'm usually swapping it out throughout the summer. I don't want to get caught with 20 gallons of winter fuel in the summer. So every couple of weeks a couple of 5 gallon cans go into one of the cars and the Grand Marquis makes a gas run with those cans in the trunk.

I do dose a couple of those cans in the winter with Stabil. I've found the large B&S engine gas caps fit on the cans, which are vented, so my cans don't bulge. I have two that have a well sealed cap, and two with the B&S gas caps. I treat the two with the sealing caps and don't touch them between October and March or April. But the other two get used and refilled about once a month during that time. Usually when the temps are going to be low and/or oilBabe has run her fuel tank down to the walk level. So I save her the hassle of filling up in the winter by adding gas to her car and then I go out and refill the cans. Ten gallons is over 2/3rds of tank for her Rav4, so during the school year, that will just about cover a week of commuting.

Originally Posted by JimPghPA
I am not worried about the generator starting in the summer, but I do not trust the plastic fuel cans to hold winter gas if the ambient gets near 100 F. You should see how much they bulge at only 75 F.


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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431140 05/17/20 07:42 AM
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hatt Offline
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Jerry Cans are the answer. I just finished rotating out gas from before hurricane Irma in 2017.

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Last edited by hatt; 05/17/20 07:44 AM.

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Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: JimPghPA] #5431144 05/17/20 07:48 AM
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eljefino Offline
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I think you got good smog-rated gas cans! The pressure they hold means the lighter fractions of the gas are forced to stick around. Like carbonation in a bottle of ginger ale. This should mean the gas will last longer.

Re: Rotating out the winter generator gasoline [Re: 2010Civic] #5431145 05/17/20 07:50 AM
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spasm3 Offline
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Originally Posted by 2010Civic
Why couldn't you just go get gas if you need it? Let the gas station store it for you.


I don't keep much in summer as outages are shorter, and you can drive for fuel.

Winter I keep 20 gallons on hand, harder to drive 30 or more miles to find fuel with ice on the road, why risk it when I can store 20 gallons which is about 4 days of running in the 4375 unit.


13 elantra 84k 5w30 synpwr
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17 mazda cx-5 19000 miles m1 0w30
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