What type of gas should I use in any air cooled engine?
We cannot be held responsible for problems because of ethanol, all we can do is educate people.
Supreme Fuel: You must only use supreme fuel for the following reasons; regular and midgrade fuels contain a lot of ethanol which has detrimental effects on small engines. Ethanol is so thin that it sometimes gets by the needle and seat in the carburetor and fills above the piston area with fuel, which in turn drains into the engine oil causing oil contamination. If you start the engine with gas contaminated oil, engine seizure will result. This is why we turn the fuel valve off when not in use.
Regular Gas: It is apparent when regular gas has been put in our equipment because the rubber washer under the fuel cap will swell up and not seal properly. The fuel lines will rot out prematurely (this has caused a fire on a six month old piece of equipment we have. Luckily, the customer was able to extinguish it). A six month old piece of equipment should not have needed a fuel line but thanks to ethanol, it did. The unfortunate thing is, when you fill up with supreme, the first 5 to 10 litres you pay for are actually regular because it was left in the hose from the previous consumer. The only way to make sure you are getting supreme is to pump 5 to 10 litres into your car first.
Ethanol: Ethanol attracts water so after a couple months you will have gas in your can with a bit of water on the bottom. Leaving your gas can in the sun and then in the shade will cause the ethanol to attract water droplets too. We find that even supreme gas will only last two months and will become acidic.
Stabilizers: We tried stabilizer where we drained everything in the shop, added stabilizer and refilled and started the equipment to make sure all fuel was stabilized. The next spring we had 40 fuel-related breakdowns within a week! The stabilizer company stated that the gas company changed the formula of the gas. Maybe the are better now, but that kind of dissatisfaction is not worth the risk going forward. We now drain everything completely so we have no worries whatsoever.
The bottom line is, if the gas can has been in your garage since the last season, please don’t use it in our equipment or your own. For questions or comments related to this article, please call 613.258.4152