Putting your beloved ride away for the season and enduring months of watching it sit in place, wishing you could just go for a drive, is an unfortunate reality of winter vehicle storage. Worse is the notion that your careful storage prep routine includes a common misstep that will set you up for a bad experience come springtime. That’s exactly what FortNine digs into with this latest video about fuel stabilizers ...
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I have never used Sta-Bil in my cars, I have however been known to take them out and drive them a few times during their "storage period" and get some fresh gas. Normally I hit the road a couple of times a month over the winter, although I have been known to let a car sit from mid January to March. I have tried Sta-Bil in my lawn and garden equipment and come time to use that equipment and I was not happy as it was way harder to start than I would have liked. In the end I just start and use stuff. When I shut off the tractor and generator I shut off the fuel and starve them so there is nothing or very little in the carburetor. I know this is the wrong thing to do but it has served me well for over 10 years. The Snow blower doesn't have a shutoff valve so it gets to come out on Summer days and run for a little while on the lawn while I am mowing. My 1971 Snow blower gets three roll over pulls before I prime, choke, and switch it on and then it starts on the first pull, last major service was in 2009 other than that it is just yearly oil changes. I will continue to do what works for me, thanks.
I used Stabil religiously in all of my cars until I noticed a buildup of a crusty red substance on the Carburetor of one of them. I live in So Cal so my cars don't ever sit more than a month. I am one to keep the fuel low and ad fresh fuel with Marvel Mystery Oil added every time I drive the cars. I only found the red gooey stuff on one of 15 cars. Maybe too much Stabil in that one???????
I had a dirt track car powered by a Yamaha R1. I used Stabil over one winter, and in the spring, it would just not fire though it was always an easy starter. It took some time, including a new wire harness, before I found the real problem was the fuel injection nozzles were clogged. After that, race gas only. And now, in my Porsche and BMW that sit over the winter, there is only ethanol-free all the time.
Glad to know Stabil works, as I've been using it for years, on my Harley Davidsons, my boat and my Corvettes. I guess I'll stick with it, since it works, and I always store my vehicles with full fuel tanks. Don't have much choice in this part of the country to find non-ethanol fuels, unless I use "Trick" fuel, which comes in several flavors up to and including 114 octane.
For those that aren't aware of the site, you can go to pure-gas.org to find sources of real gasoline in your area.
Marinas are usually a great source.
Having worked on boats for years there were times when the red Stabil would make a needle valve stick in a carburetor. And when stored to long the fuel was junk anyway. We did have better luck with the green Stabil that is supposed to deal with ethanol better.
I've been using Sta-Bil for ever, and never had any issues in anything I had from boats to bikes, cars, and tools, and I never run them out of gas, as I was told storing them for long periods empty causes gaskets to dry. But one the Gas Companies went from the MTBF?? additive to Ethanol, I started using the Sta-Bil for marine use (the blue stuff) as it deals with moisture better than the regular red Sat-Bil. Actually, I add Sta-Bil year around on anything with an engine...