How to Stop Your Gas from Getting Stale


Article by Cate Marian

Photography by Stock Images + Consumer Reports

Old gas will start to smell, can sap engine power, and might cause your car to stall or not start the next time you go for a drive. Now that we're spending less time behind the wheel, the articleHow to Keep the Gas Fresh and Protect Your Car During the Coronavirus Pandemic from Consumer Reports outlines a some simple steps you can take to maintain your fuel while your car is sitting in your driveway.

If you're driving less, or not at all, gasoline sitting in your fuel tank could be getting old and stale, and degrading.

“Gas can start to go bad in as little as just three months because the lighter, more volatile components of gasoline evaporate over time,” says John Ibbotson, Consumer Reports’ chief automotive services manager at the Auto Test Center. 

Using old fuel in your car can sap engine power, causing hesitation and stalling. The worst case is that your car might not start. Luckily, there are a few simple ways to protect your car’s gasoline for the long run, provided you act now. The two most important steps are to completely fill up your car’s fuel tank and also add a substance called fuel stabilizer.

READ MORE: How to Keep the Gas Fresh and Protect Your Car During the Coronavirus Pandemic

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