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#301318 - 10/31/22 02:25 PM Gas Storage
roberttheiii Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 02/13/09
Posts: 387
Loc: Connecticut, USA
I'm curious to know how you store fuel for an emergency and how much. Please consider answering the following. The aim of the questions is to see if I should improve my storage plans.

How do you all store fuel?
How much do you store at all times?
What do you store fuel for?
How much can you ramp up and store if there's a predicted needs (hurricane is coming, etc.)?

Answering the questions myself:

I store my gas in the containers (mostly plastic cans, but some metal NATO cans) with Sta-Bil for preservation. I may switch to Pri-G. I rotate fuel every six months. I store diesel in plastic jerry cans and I do not add stabilizer to diesel but I do rotate it every six months.

I keep 1 gallon of mixed fuel in a no spill can, 2.5 gallons of straight gas in no spill for the lawn mower. I keep ~20 gallons of gas in 5 gallon cans and 5 gallons of diesel on hand most of the time.

Gas is for a portable generator that may be used during and extended power outage (or times with little sun) and a car. Diesel for another vehicle and for home heating if needed.

If an ice storm or a hurricane, etc, would impact me, I could ramp up storage to ~25 gallons of diesel and ~50 gallons of gasoline, all in "man portable" (6 gallon or less) containers.

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#301319 - 10/31/22 04:07 PM Re: Gas Storage [Re: roberttheiii]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3729
Loc: USA

  • Three metal five gallon gasoline containers treated with Sta-bil and a manila tag giving me the expiration date based on when it was treated.
  • Between 10-15 gallons -- I rotate through, using the oldest gas cans to refill my mower and snowthrower. If a gas can approaches its expiration date before being cycled through this way, I pour it into one of our cars.
  • The main use case is for running a generator during a power outage, with a secondary use case being for our vehicles if we have concerns about gas stations being open.
  • Not a lot more -- I can get to 15 gallons plus fill up the mower, snowthrower, two small generators, so topping out at about 25 gallons outside of the cars. I also have a siphon for moving fuel from where it is to where it needs to be.


The plastic cans I'd been using started failing and ended up getting replaced.

I no longer have anything that uses fuel-oil mix other than a unserviceable chainsaw I bought super cheap at a garage sale and have never fixed. I've never had an event here where I would have chosen a chainsaw over my two saber saws (one corded, one cordless, and I maintain the batteries for my cordless tools religiously).

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#301320 - 10/31/22 10:39 PM Re: Gas Storage [Re: roberttheiii]
RayW Offline
Addict

Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 597
Loc: Orlando, FL
How much does your generator use per day and how long until you can reasonably expect to be able to resupply? That's about how much fuel you need.

I usually keep 20 gallons of alcohol free gas in nato cans treated with stabil. 5 gallons of diesel in a nato can with some anti-algae treatment, it might not need it in the can but I need it when it goes in the lawnmower. With the humidity in Florida the air has algea growing in it. Also keep a gallon or two of the premix cans of shelf stable fuel for the chainsaws. It has a long shelf life and the engines run well on it.

The generator uses 5 gallons a day so that gives me 4 days of run time before I need to buy more or drain a vehicle. The generator gets serviced once a year, oil change and fresh fuel. It also gets started regularly during the year. The fuel rotation is once a year and most of it will go in the truck. The fuel cans and the genny all get tagged with the purchase date so I can remember when it was done.

Also, if you have a chainsaw whether it's gas or electric (I have both) have spare chains and a bar with it. If you hit an embedded object in a tree or it shifts while cutting and pinches the bar you can continue cutting with spare parts. This seems to be more of an oversight with electric chainsaw owners. I guess since they don't have to deal with anything other than spare batteries, they don't see the need for any spares.

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#301321 - 11/01/22 04:27 AM Re: Gas Storage [Re: roberttheiii]
adam2 Offline
Addict

Registered: 05/23/08
Posts: 472
Loc: Somerset UK
Here in the UK petrol storage is limited by law to 30 litres.
I keep that much.
In two military spec steel jerry cans each of which has a capacity of 20 litres but is only filled to 15 litres.

I use red colored cans for petrol.

I store about 100 litres of paraffin, kerosene in the USA
This is stored in similar but blue cans.

I do not use petrol regularly.
I use a little paraffin normally mainly for a portable heater.

I store several 19 kilo propane cylinders.

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#301324 - 11/03/22 05:53 PM Re: Gas Storage [Re: roberttheiii]
MartinFocazio Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 2192
Loc: Bucks County PA
How do you all store fuel?
5 Gallon Plastic Containers
2.5 Gallon Plastic Container

How much do you store at all times?
What do you store fuel for?
(a) 20 Gallons 87 Octane "Regular" Gasoline for Generator and Vehicles.

(b) 2.5 gallons 92 Octane Ethanol-Free Gas "run test" fuel for generator.

(c) 2.5 Gallons 92 Octane 50:1 Oil Mix. For the two remaining non-battery outdoor power tools I have (Leaf Blower and Split-shaft line trimmer/multi head tool).

(d) 15 Gallons Diesel. For the tractor and potentially for the furnace.

(e) 5 Gallons K1 Kerosene. For a shop heater (one of those "jet engine" style ones).


How much can you ramp up and store if there's a predicted needs (hurricane is coming, etc.)?

My current allocation was developed after the 2012 Superstorm Sandy, where our power was out for over 14 days, and due to damage to telecommunications infrastructure, there was no ability to buy fuel for many days. Technically, I could "ramp up" to much more if I were willing to buy more storage containers such as this kind but we learned that there's a point where running the generator is not worth it. Specifically, spending $300 on gas to save $200 worth of refrigerated food. We do need a generator for water (we're on a well) and our septic is a "pumped" system, so we need power to run the tank pump. Also we have an oil furnace, but we also have wood stove and fireplace so we can get by without it if needed. But we definitely learned that running the generator about 1 hour in the morning and two hours in the evening is often enough to recharge batteries, fill up some water containers and flush the toilets.

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#301325 - 11/03/22 06:03 PM Re: Gas Storage [Re: chaosmagnet]
MartinFocazio Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 2192
Loc: Bucks County PA
Originally Posted By: chaosmagnet

I've never had an event here where I would have chosen a chainsaw over my two saber saws (one corded, one cordless, and I maintain the batteries for my cordless tools religiously).


I thought I was the only one who has gotten to the end of the line for 2-cycle motors!


I do actually NEED a chainsaw from time to time here, but I went cordless 2 years ago - and it's great. Even the fire company now uses a cordless chainsaw on calls (Milwaukee brand). Our auto extrication tools ("jaws of life") are even cordless now and kick butt on the old setup.

For me, in addition to the cordless chainsaw, for many jobs, I often use a cordless recip saw with a huge pruning blade - it is GREAT. I always have a few sharp blades on hand, I don't care if I hit a rock or something, and it's super-fast.

Best thing about my switch to battery-powered outdoor power stuff is that EVERYTHING STARTS THE FIRST TIME, EVERY TIME. No ethanol rot. No sparkplugs. No fuel spills. No drama.

Next year, I hope to replace my lawn mower with something battery-powered.

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#301327 - 11/04/22 04:58 PM Re: Gas Storage [Re: roberttheiii]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3729
Loc: USA
My Chainsaw Safety Class instructor taught us that gas powered chainsaws are safer — they have less torque so are more likely to get stopped by the safety chaps. However, given my (lack of) usage pattern, if I needed a chainsaw I’m sure I’d get a battery powered one for the same reasons you cite.

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#301330 - 11/07/22 03:03 PM Re: Gas Storage [Re: roberttheiii]
roberttheiii Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 02/13/09
Posts: 387
Loc: Connecticut, USA
Thank you to all that have responded. I think my current plan / situation is in line with others.

Since folks are discussing 2 stroke motors...every tool I have bought in the last 10 years has been electric (mostly 18v some 40v) but I have a handful of hand-me-down / gifted items that are two-stroke and I don't see a good reason to replace them since they work well currently.

I did buy a 4 stroke outboard and car. I think those are the only internal combustion items I've laid cash out for in the last 10 years.

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