Don’t Get Stuck With a Gooey Gasoline
A little known fact is that gasoline can freeze. In fact, it can freeze while you are operating your vehicle. Over-the-Road truck drivers have long touted the benefits of fuel additive while driving in freezing temperatures. Gasoline and diesel are a mixture of hydrocarbons and the components have different freezing points. Huh? For the scientists out there, I’m sure you just went what a simplistic approach. But for the average non-mechanically inclined American who wants to protect their car and not get stuck in the slush, I offer a couple of simple tips.
For diesel as the temperatures begin to drop below 32ºF or 0ºC the paraffin in the fuel begins to cloud and gelling soon occurs. This gelatinous fuel is then unable to flow through the fuel filter as a waxy coat builds up and the engine begins to choke. The simple fix is a fuel heater or a diesel additive such as Howes Diesel Treatment. The additive has received an overall approval rating by users and is easily found at most truck stops.
The magic point for gasoline occurs at a much lower temperature, -97ºF, even that is going to vary depending on the additives in the fuel. In temperatures as common place as 32ºF your tank can begin to freeze if water gets into the mixture. Methyl Alcohol is a ready fix to keep the water from freezing in your gas tank if it gets in there. Oh sure, like you have a gallon of that hanging around the garage? And how would you know if water is even in there, right? What about an additive for those of you who don’t keep a chemistry lab? Just want to be able to walk in and buy something economical for your ordinary GG (grocery getter) or as it is otherwise known, the family car? HEET, is the most popular gas-line antifreeze and water remover product on the market. This product can be found readily in all major auto parts stores and several general merchandise stores as well. So, if you’re not living in sunny Florida and have to face those nippy winds of Illinois, investing in an additive during the winter months may be well worth it.
Of course, most of this problem can be kept to a minimum by simply keeping a one-half or greater level of fuel in the tank. That can be easier said than done when money is tight, but the benefits far outweigh the temporary pinch in your pocket.