Gas for Small Engines
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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    Gas for Small Engines

    This is mostly for chainsaws but applies to anything with a small gas engine. I figured saws fall under equipment. I had a friend of mine tell me to use recreational gas because it doesn't have ethanol in it, which according to a lot of people, destroys small engines. Especially two cycle. The fuel stations that carry rec fuel are few and far between here. I was curious if Sta-bil additive works just as well as buying rec fuel? I don't run much that's two cycle. Two saws, a weed whip, and a tiller if I get it fixed this year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TruckFarmer55 View Post
    This is mostly for chainsaws but applies to anything with a small gas engine. I figured saws fall under equipment. I had a friend of mine tell me to use recreational gas because it doesn't have ethanol in it, which according to a lot of people, destroys small engines. Especially two cycle. The fuel stations that carry rec fuel are few and far between here. I was curious if Sta-bil additive works just as well as buying rec fuel? I don't run much that's two cycle. Two saws, a weed whip, and a tiller if I get it fixed this year.
    I was checking into this a few months ago myself. Just googled it again and here was a relevant article by Husqvarna specifically regarding small engines.

    https://www.husqvarna.com/us/forest/...nol-free-fuel/
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    Rope_Chucker's Avatar
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    Interesting Husqy article . I've always used premium gas from the pump...here I believe it has 10% ethanol. But it is 97 octane. Not had any problems but may revisit my methods.

    Correction: I think it's 93 octane.
    Last edited by Rope_Chucker; 02-04-2018 at 11:10 AM.
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    I use ethanol free gas, treat it with Sta-bil and I've never had a gas related problem. I have two 5 gallon cans that I cycle through and I mix fuel for the 2 strokes 1 gallon at a time from the 5 gallon cans. I don't use a lot of gas, but I don't worry about it's age. I don't think I'd do it like this if I didn't have ethanol free gas.

    Just my experience and 2 cents.

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    Boating area

    A lot of gas stations that serve boaters sell ethanol free gas. It costs more but is worth it for chainsaws, trimmers etc. Heck, go to a marina if you need to for a few gallons. If I can't get ethanol free gas, it gets treated AND the carb is run dry before I park the machine.

    The Husky article matches my experience and what I hear. Ethanol has a lot of good points but isn't well suited to two stroke engines that get occasional use. Most people use their vehicles enough so storage isn't an issue plus all newer vehicles are designed for it. Most of my small equipment is very old and wasn't designed for ethanol. Come to think of it, I'm old but seem to tolerate a bit of ethanol now and then. If the use goes too high, I too don't run well the next day. . .

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    Tru Fuel

    I use 50:1 Tru-Fuel in all my 2 cycle engines. No need for sta-bil, has high octane and has no ethanol.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Tru Fuel 50-1.JPG   Tru Fuel 50-1_5 gal.JPG  
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    I have a 30-gallon container in which I try to keep 10-15 gallons of gasoline for all my small engines (2-generators, lawn tractor, push mower, leaf blower, etc.). Over the winter I try to maintain a bit more as you never know when the generator will be called into action for extended duty.

    I use non-Ethanol gasoline which around here is only available in 91 octane. I also always treat it with Sta-Bil.

    Depending on conditions, my gasoline can end up being 3-4 months old, especially in the winter. However, my 2-stroke mix for the leaf blower can end up being a year old. I only mix 1 gallon at a time but it can end up sitting for a long time. I used to drain the leaf blower for winter but then discovered that it works great at clearing the sidewalk and cars when we have those light fluffy snows so I leave it fueled up and ready to go.

    I have been following this regiment for over 5 years and have never had an issue with storing the pre-mix for a year. The leaf blower (which is an Echo PB-250) always starts with 2-3 pulls even in 15-20 degree weather.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ray_PA View Post
    I use 50:1 Tru-Fuel in all my 2 cycle engines. No need for sta-bil, has high octane and has no ethanol.
    Yes but man... that stuff is almost $25 per gallon!
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    This is a catch 22 for me. You are suppose to get ethanol free 93 octane for these small engines. I can only get one or the other. My ethanol free is 87 octane here. I don’t know what the right choice is. I usually just get 93 octane ethanol fuel and treat it. I really don’t know if the higher octane makes a difference.
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    jgayman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yank View Post
    This is a catch 22 for me. You are suppose to get ethanol free 93 octane for these small engines. I can only get one or the other. My ethanol free is 87 octane here. I don’t know what the right choice is. I usually just get 93 octane ethanol fuel and treat it. I really don’t know if the higher octane makes a difference.
    You should be fine with non-Ethanol 87 octane. What engines are you using? The manuals for all of my small engines always say to use gasoline with an octane of at least 87.

    Unless you have a specialized small engine which is VERY high compression, 87 should be fine. If given the choice between 87 non-Ethanol and 93 corn juice I will always take the straight gas.
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