E10 Fuel Changes: Classic Car Owners May Have “Difficulty” Starting Their Vehicles In Winter

Nigel Elliott, fuel specialist at the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs (FHBVC) has warned of the dangers of keeping a full tank of gas in classic cars this winter. He added that it was “always practical” to leave some space in the tank if drivers are storing their historic vehicles for the winter.

He said motorists could then “add a little fuel” after the winter instead of running on old gasoline.

He said: “There has been a lot of debate about stopping cars and the best thing to do.

“Keep the tank at least two-thirds full, obviously exposed to air and oxidation and water ingress due to changes in humidity.

“But the danger is also on a completely full tank, when you have just started the vehicle you have lost some of the lighter ends of the fuel.

READ MORE: New E10 Fuel Could Form ‘Corrosive Mixture’

Ideally, drivers should instead consider completely draining their fuel tanks before storing them for an extended period.

HCVA spokesperson Malcolm Mckay warned that leaving fuel in the tanks could pose a risk of “corrosion.”

He said: “Corrosion will occur inside a half-empty steel fuel tank no matter what fuel is used if left standing for months in a humid atmosphere.

“It is preferable to fill the tank before short-term storage and to use fuel without ethanol or at worst E5, with the anti-corrosion additive, if possible.

When it comes to storing a car, they recommend adding a few additives to limit the chance of damage.

For models built before 1996 without a catalytic converter, they recommend Castrol Classic Valvemaster.

This contains an ethanol stabilizer which can help prevent corrosion.


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