Dry Gas vs 10 Ethanol

exmarJanuary 7, 2014

With the temp at -10 last night I took the precaution of adding dry gas to my vehicles. Here's something I Googled.

"Dave" has the favorite answer it seems.

Keep warm,

Ev

Here is a link that might be useful: Ethanol vs Dry Gas

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bill_kapaun

So the ethanol hadn't absorbed water before the temperature dropped?
It won't absorb water when the temperature rises?
At the temperatures you mention, air contains near zilch moisture.

This post was edited by bill_kapaun on Tue, Jan 7, 14 at 9:19

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 9:15AM
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ericwi

I am a private pilot, and small airplanes are subject to engine failure if there is enough water in the gas, so this issue gets a lot of attention around airports. It is true that there is little or no moisture in the air during the winter, and here in Wisconsin, we have dry skin as you would expect. Water gets into the gas supply during storage, and it may have been there for 6 months or a year, before the gas is dispensed to someone's vehicle. So, it's really a crap-shoot going on here, there is no way to know for certain if the gas is contaminated with water. There are special inline filters that will remove water, but these are not standard practice yet. Since water is heavier than gasoline, airplanes are equipped with special spring loaded fuel valves, located at the bottom of the tank, where a small sample can be drained into a clear plastic cylinder. You can see a line of separation between the water and the gas, when both are present. When water contamination is found, you would keep taking samples until there was no sign of water, and one day I saw a guy taking multiple samples until he had drained about a quart of water from his airplane. That much water would have stopped his engine for certain.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 11:13AM
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bill_kapaun

AV GAS uses Ethanol?
I doubt it. Doesn't really apply to OPE.

With E10, any moisture problems don't happen until after you purchase it.
It isn't added to the gasoline until just before leaving the tank farm and doesn't sit in the storage tanks at the gas station long enough.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 11:40AM
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ericwi

"With E10, any moisture problems don't happen until after you purchase it." I was not aware that E10 is totally and reliably free of water contamination. It certainly could be true that refining and storage methods have improved to the point where this would be true, and if that is the case, it's hard to see a need for "Dry Gas" or any similar products.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 4:10PM
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bill_kapaun

The link below will answer a bit-

Here is a link that might be useful: Link below

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 4:41PM
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exmar

Hi Folks,

Just wondered if anyone would weigh in on the comment made in the original link I posted. Specifically, the comment that common rubbing alcohol was more effective and certainly cheaper than "dry gas" for water in a fuel system?

Keep warm,

EV

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 5:45PM
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bill_kapaun

If you're using E10, you shouldn't have any need for any additional "drying agents".

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 9:15PM
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tomplum

In reference to the first link, I can see where a person that suspected water in his fuel line in those freezing temps could perform this on his auto. In the old cars that had externally vented fuel systems, the temperature fluctuation above and below freezing would create condensation which would form problematic areas of water which would freeze and there you sat. OPE fuel system components don't tend to like alcohol in the fuel- so don't add additional alcohol in any form. It deteriorates rubber, viton & neoprene parts.
With any vented fuel system which you are concerned w/ condensation, keep it topped off and treated using Seafoam, Startron or similar product. If you have a choice, keep the equipment out of the sun and in a more stable temperature environment. A small shed will have greater temp fluctuations than a large one. Venting and type of floor can play a big part too. Water will find its way to the bottom of the fuel system so you can check for its presents by removing the bowl. If you are concerned that there may be water in a supply can that you can't see floating at the bottom- there are several products that will detect it which are cheap and easy to use such as Kolor Kut or Gasoila.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 12:49PM
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krnuttle

"the comment that common rubbing alcohol was more effective and certainly cheaper than "dry gas" for water in a fuel system"

The amount of water in gasoline is controlled by the concentration of Water, gasoline, and alcohol. There is an area on the concentration curve where everything is in solution. but once any component leaves that that area then something comes out of solution. (See Triple point http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triple_point)

While 100% alcohol, Ethanol, or isopropanol , would increase the solubility of water in gasoline. Rubbing Alcohol is not pure and can contain 30% water. Depending on the water present in the gasoline when the Rubbing alcohol is added it could make matters worse.

If it would be me, I would depend on the 10% ethanol in the gasoline to dissolve any water in the tank, and would not put addition water into the tank by using an alcohol solutions containing water like rubbing alcohol.

This post was edited by knuttle on Fri, Jan 10, 14 at 8:44

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 12:15PM
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tomplum

Class, it is time to go into your garage and do a science experiment- cya comment if you feel you can safely do this and not burn down your house or otherwise change your world for the worse.... Take a glass jar with a small amount- maybe a silver dollars worth of water and add a few ounces of fuel. See the puddle on the bottom? Now put a spot of alcohol in it. What happens appearance wise? If you were to mix- will it stay in suspension?
Even better, realizing this is winter and cold/ dry for many here try this anyways. Then try it again when there is moisture in the air as it is more apparent then. Take a small amount of fuel in a glass jar or small metal pan and leaved exposed to the atmosphere. In higher humidity, in as little as 15 to 30 minutes you'll see the difference . What you see is courtesy of alcohol that came free with your fuel purchase. Please describe your results of what these two experiments show you about the relationship of fuel, alcohol and water.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 1:16PM
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exmar

Fascinating discussion as (almost) always.

FWIW, I called the garage that does my vehicle work and asked how many vehicles they'd had in with frozen fuel lines in the recent below zero weather. Answer, Gasoline, none, Diesel, "a ton of them."

Ev

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 2:22PM
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bill_kapaun

Cars/trucks etc. have a relatively well sealed system,, so are much better at keeping atmospheric moisture from getting into the tank. (note the "woosh" when you open the gas cap)

"Vented" OPE will have the dead air in the tank "breathing" as the temperature changes.
I suggest filling the tank to the BRIM with stabilized fuel when not in use. Reduce the dead air space to a minimum and the quantity of atmospheric air exchange will be minimal.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 7:31PM
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tomplum

Years back I worked in a dealership and one winter's morning the phone started to ring off the hook. One of the calls was from a local gas station with a tank cover problem that fed their customers a tank of no go rather than fuel. They also stepped up with an assurance that they would handle everyone's bill. Some people made it a mile, some 3 or 4. Car after car came in on the hook. Chunks of ice in the tanks, frozen lines. What a mess!

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 8:19PM
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robertz6

Sound like with the trend towards hybrid cars, diesel hybrid cars, maybe soon plug-in hybrid diesels, there might a few problems down the road. With fuel sitting the tanks for months or years.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 4:14PM
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krnuttle

tomplum

You do not have the controls on your experiment that would prove conclusively the solubility of water in the mixture of Water, gasoline and ethanol. The solubility point of any of the solvents in the mixture,is finally controlled by nature. The water is much more that would be experienced in a normal gas tank.

A silver dollars worth of water would be a couple of milliliters of water. An ounce is about 30 mills so a few ounces would be about 100 mills of water. A spot of alcohol a Milliliter?

So you solution would contain about 2% water 97% gasoline, and 1 % alcohol. Much different than a solution in the tank with 10% alcohol in gasoline, with a less than 0.1% water if that great.

For the the small concentration of water in gasoline and alcohol, there is no need for Drygas.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 9:40PM
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andyma_gw

Under the wrong conditions E 10 fuel and condensation will cause a phase shift and you will have 3 distinct layers. Water , ethanol and gas. The top layer siphoned off was real gas! The rest, not so much..

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 9:43PM
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