Does Fuel go Off? Old Fuel and Fuel Storage Questions Answered

How Long Does Fuel Last

There are many reasons why you might ask questions like, how long does petrol last? Or, does diesel go off? Perhaps you’ve been away for a while and want to resume driving an old car, or maybe you don’t drive very often and therefore haven’t filled your tank for a while. Knowing how long gas can sit in a car is important.So, here’s everything you need to know about old fuel and fuel storage.

Is it safe to drive with old fuel?

If you last topped up your tank six months ago or less, it’s likely that your car will be perfectly safe to drive no matter if it’s diesel of petrol. That said; if it’s been over six months, it’s probably safer to drain your tank to avoid causing any unnecessary damage.

What can go wrong?

Oxidised petrol can cause deposits and other impurities to clog up and damage the inner mechanisms of your engine. And, as any car owner knows, engine problems can be expensive and difficult to repair. As for old diesel, this can become thicker and stickier over time which can again clog up the system and land you with an unwanted repair bill.

Can I rejuvenate old fuel?

If there’s only a little bit of old fuel left in the tank, you might be wondering if you can rejuvenate it by topping up with new fuel. The answer is usually yes. By filling up your tank, you’ll be able to use your car as normal. If you’ve a full tank full of old petrol or diesel, however, this can’t be rejuvenated, and your tank will need to be drained to ensure it doesn’t cause engine damage.

Top tip: Don’t take risks. If in doubt, always ask for professional advice.

Can I store fuel?

There are many petrol stations on the roads these days. But if it gives you peace of mind to keep a can of fuel nearby, there’s no harm in doing so – however you must obey a few basic rules.

Firstly, store all fuel in a plastic or metal can that meets UN standards. Secondly, remember petrol is highly flammable and should be kept in a secure outbuilding away from any naked flames. Thirdly, the Health and Safety Executive states only 30-litres of petrol can be kept at home at any given time. You’ll need to contact the Petroleum Enforcement Authority if you wish to keep more than the suggested amount. There are no restrictions with regard to diesel, but use your common sense with regards to safety, such as keeping it away from children.

How long can I store fuel for?

When stored in a sealed container at 20 degrees, petrol can last up to six months. This time is reduced to just three months if the temperature rises. With diesel, it’s usually usable for between six and twelve months or until it becomes ‘gummy.’ If you notice it’s extra sticky, don’t use it.

If you’re looking for a quality used vehicle or affordable car finance deals, contact Carwise Group today for more information. Based in Harlow and Maidstone, Carwise Group is a reputable car dealership offering a wide range of vehicle at great prices. Remember, buying from a dealership is often considered safer than a private seller as all cars are fully safety checked and come with the relevant documentation.