It’s important to be able to tell the difference between good and bad gas by its colour. When your gas tank is full of bad gas, it can hurt your car in many ways.
Gasoline that comes from the ground has no colour and is clear like water. But each grade of gas is coloured with sulphur or other dyes to show that it is for a different type of car or has a different octane level. If the gas is dark brown or black, something is wrong.
When gas has been sitting in a tank for a long time, it is important to check its colour. Gas shouldn’t be dark brown, because that means it’s been sitting still for a long time and has oxidised.
It is important to know what to do if you find bad gas in your car’s fuel tank.
Different Grades and Colors
Pure gasoline is a clear colour that looks a lot like water. This has made it hard for sellers, manufacturers, and customers to tell the difference between the different grades of fuel.
Because of this, the colours of gasoline have been changed to help people tell them apart. Often, sulphur or other additives are used to colour the different grades of gasoline.
The main types of fuel made from oil that are used in cars are:
Regular (87 Octane)
Midgrade, which is also called Plus (89-90 Octane)
Premium, which is sometimes called Super Premium (91-94 Octane)
Most of the time, regular gasoline smells green or blue. People sometimes mistake this for the bluish colour of jet or racecar fuel.
Most gasoline that is midgrade or Plus is yellow.
Most of the time, premium gas is a pinkish colour.
No matter what colour the gas is, it should be clear and light in colour as a whole.
When putting gas in a tank for the first time, it’s not too important to see what colour it is, and it’s hard to tell at a gas pump anyway. Most of the dyes are there to help the people who make and sell the gases tell them apart.
If you haven’t driven your car in a while (at least a month), you should check its colour. If it’s a dark brown colour, this means that the gasoline has gone bad and could hurt your car.
You can compare the colours of new and old gasoline by pumping some of each into two clear containers. Depending on the type of fuel you choose, fresh gas will be a light colour.
If the older gas is much darker brown than the newer gas, that means the oxidised fuel should no longer be used.
Dark brown gas can make cars stop, move slowly, take longer to change gears, and even turn on the check engine light. Using oxidised fuel can cause expensive and permanent damage to the car, so it’s important to know how to tell the difference between fresh and stale gasoline.
How to Remove Oxidized Gasoline
Instead of doing something yourself, it’s always a good idea to ask a professional for help and advice. But if this is not possible, you can find instructions on how to get rid of bad fuel on your own.
If you see oxidised gasoline in your fuel tank, you should get rid of it. If the fuel tank is full of old gas, it may take longer to empty because it can take up to two minutes to syphon out one gallon of gas. Set aside some time to get rid of bad fuel.
Also, because gasoline vapours are dangerous, make sure you are in a well-ventilated area before you drain the fuel tank.
First and foremost, you need a syphon hand pump. Gasoline is dangerous to breathe in or swallow, so make sure to use a syphon hand pump.
This is a small tube that will be used to pump gas out of the fuel tank. It should be between 3/8 inch and 1 inch thick and about 6 feet long (the thicker the hose, the longer the pump time will be).
You will also need a fuel storage can to hold and get rid of the oxidising gas. You will use the hand pump to put the syphon hose into the fuel tank.
Once you reach the fuel tank, you will put the other hose into the fuel storage can and pump out the gas until the fuel tank is empty.
When all of the bad gas has been drained from the tank, it is important to get rid of it in a place that the government has approved. Gas should never be dumped in trash cans, drains, lakes, or other places.
Make sure to call your local waste department to make sure you’re throwing things away in the right place.
Gasoline Shelf Life
Gas doesn’t last for very long. It can last between 3 and 6 months. Gas oxidises and becomes very hard to use after its expiration date.
Unfortunately, the fuels with a higher grade don’t last longer than regular gasoline.
But there are a few things you can do to make gasoline last longer. There are fuel stabilisers you can buy that can slow down the rate at which gas breaks down. STA-BIL, Seafoam, Lucas, and Marvel are some of the most well-known brands of fuel stabilisers.
The best time to use fuel stabilisers and additives is when the gas is new, so they can counteract the effects of oxidation. However, they won’t help much if the gas has already started to break down.
If you use a fuel stabiliser, you can keep gas fresh for 1 to 3 years.
If you do have old gas in your car’s fuel tank, you can also mix it with new gas. The combustion ability of the car might not be up to par, but it allows you to utilize the old gasoline.
When you do this, you should talk to a professional to find out if you need to add anything to the fuel tank.