ORDEREthanol Alcohol Fuel Test Kit and/or Quik-Check Solution
Order a Portable Ethanol Alcohol Fuel Test Kit - For Marine Use
E10 Fuel Tips for Boaters
1. Whenever possible avoid gas that contains ethanol, since it will quickly attract and absorb water into the gas tank.
Ethanol is a strong solvent that will also cause premature deterioration of engine parts.
2. Most marine manufacturers, including Mercury Marine, now recommend leaving tank empty for prolonged storage.
3. Never leave engine stored with 95% E10 fuel in tank - Ethanol can and will absorb greater than 5% water into tank over prolonged period.
4. Be aware that no additive exists that will completely prevent water absorption into E10 gas - Some simply break-down the water molecules to delay onset of phase separation. This results in lean fuel due to excess water - which may cause damage to engine in the long term.
No liquid additive ingredient can actually remove water* - Beware of deceptive marketing. If there actually was an ingredient that safely removed water the major oil refineries would already be adding it to all E10 gasoline!
*Hydroburn, a new additive used in the petroleum industry does remove water when engine is running but it contains caustic ingredients and alcohol and should only be used by professionals, since it can damage delicate engine parts.
5. Avoid all additives that contain primary alcohols - 10% ethanol (a solvent and cleanser) is plenty to keep your engine clean and free of deposits. Quik-Check can also be used to check additives for alcohol.
6. Install a water separator filter in engine - Check often for clogging or fuel restriction.
7. Check your owner's manual fuel recommendations - Many marine engines prohibit use of gas containing alcohol.
8. Use caution when removing lower ethanol & water layer from the fuel tank - Removing ethanol drops octane 2 to 4 points. View methods for safe water removal.
More information on ethanol E10 fuel use in marine engines:
Avoid using any marine fuel system treatment product that contains alcohol or strong solvents with E10 gasoline.
Because boat fuel systems are constantly being challenged to prevent water absorption into the fuel system, numerous "Gas Treatment Products" marketed to the marine industry ALSO contain alcohol. (Becuase alcohol has such amazing hygroscopic water-absorbing and cleansing capabilities.)
Fuel System "Cleansers", "Rust Removers", "Octane Boosters" and more, are often alcohol-based products.
Marine engines require intense lubrication and prevention of rust. Most oil-based marine lubricants do not contain alcohol -
Lubricants and fuel conditioners (that do not contain alcohol or butanes) can offer extra support when using ethanol blend fuels.
Ethanol alcohol present in E10 fuel, is a drying agent - Lubricants, conditioners and greasers counteract some of the negative effects of alcohol and help to prevent drying out and cracking of boat engine parts and hoses.
Use caution when removing water/ethanol lower layer from gas tank. Ethanol is an octane-enhancer, and removing it from E10 gas will drop octane rating - Running a marine engine on low octane fuel causes engine damage and performance issues.
Simply put, ethanol is an excellent SOLVENT, CLEANSER, DRYING AGENT and unlike MTBE, ethanol gas will ABSORB WATER. Ethanol easily and quickly dissolves resins, rust, dirt etc. that creates a sludge that coats and travels through the engine, causing engine stalling and complications, including clogged fuel filters, carburetor jets and injectors.
The following information is a guideline only, effects from alcohol fuels will vary. Always follow equipment's fuel recommendations and review your owner's manual and warranty statements for fuel requirements.