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  1. #1
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    2,569
    Location
    Bedford, VA
    Tractor
    John Deere 2320

    Default Give me tips/advise..

    I have a new Stihl FS90 trimmer and a 40 yrs old Stihl 031 chainsaw that i am running.. I have heard all the horror stories about the ethanol issues and small engines..

    Currently - I am using ethanol free +92 octane gas and treating it with the Stabil - Marine formula (which is suppose to help with the ethanol) and using the Stihl full synthetic 2 stroke oil mix.. I also try to only mix up what I know I will use in a short time.

    Now comes the part I have found conflicting information on

    1) I was told that the 'ethanol free' gas you buy is not actually ethanol free - there is up to about 5% in it. Anyone know if this is true or not? Since ethanol is added at a terminal, i dont see how that much ethanol could get into the gas between the terminal and the station. This is assuming that you let the ethanol gas drain out of the fill hose at the station until you get the 'free' gas coming out.

    2) Do you leave the fuel in the tank of the equipment OR do you run it dry? I have been told reasons to do both.

    3) How long do you let your mixed fuel go unused before using it for another purpose and mixing a new batch?

    4) Does anyone only use the 'pre-mix' fuel ($5/qt and up) sold in the metal cans? I was told at a dealership to only run it, BUT I was wondering if i could run my own 'mix' and when i was done drain the tank and put some of the pre-mix and run to get it in the system (which should eliminate the storage ethanol issue it seems to me)

    5) Is 'ethanol' problem actually from leaving mixed fuel in the carb and it dries out gumming up the ports?

    thanks

    brian
    Bedford, VA
    2320 w/ 62D MMM, 200CX FEL, Pats EZ Change, LX4 Cutter
    Co-owner (with my father) of John Deere 790, 30 HP, 4x4, 513 cutter, 70 FEL
    2012 Nissan Xterra Pro-4x

  2. #2
    New Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    16
    Location
    northcarolina
    Tractor
    massey furguson 1030

    Default

    if you have a ace hardware go there and buy the stihl oil mix and use high test grade gas that should help

  3. #3
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    2,569
    Location
    Bedford, VA
    Tractor
    John Deere 2320

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    Thanks Michael_a_h - I already have the full synthetic mix and high test gas (advertised methanol free)..

    I was just hoping some small engine repair ppl would chime in with what they have seen as issues..
    b
    Bedford, VA
    2320 w/ 62D MMM, 200CX FEL, Pats EZ Change, LX4 Cutter
    Co-owner (with my father) of John Deere 790, 30 HP, 4x4, 513 cutter, 70 FEL
    2012 Nissan Xterra Pro-4x

  4. #4
    New Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    17
    Tractor
    john deere LX178 & LX277

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    We have a local stihl and Cub Cadet dealer here in MN and he told me not to run Ethonal gas in any small engines. MN currently has 10% ethonal Wisc has 15% and that is where they were having problems as they were burning up the Kohler engines in the cub cadets. The higher the octane the higher the ethonal is what I have been told. This dealer also said do not use anything but stihl oil as they have formulated it for the stihl engines.

    I have also been told the shelf life on Ethonal gas is 6 months. Use Stabil or Seafoam and it lasts longer but I always drain tanks and run dry for storage. I use only unoxygenated ethonal free gas, more $$ but well worth it in all my small engines. Ethonal gas is the number one problem with small engines. Biggest mistake ever made was Ethonal gas. Hope that helps

  5. #5
    Member solly's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    28
    Location
    Floyd, VA
    Tractor
    none

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    I've recently had several people advise me to use Sea-Foam on a regular basis not just over winter when the various small engines are not in use. I just got some so it's too soon to know if it does make a difference.

    Here's a link to their site:

    Sea Foam | How to Use Sea Foam Motor Treatment

    On a side note the price difference on ethanol free gas here has gone from 10 cents more to 20 cents more per gallon.
    Said the Lab: "It was there, so I ate it".

  6. #6
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    57
    Tractor
    Ford 5000

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    Congrats on the purchase of one badass trimmer.I have the same one and I love it.My two cousins and their dad bought the same one and all love it too.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    606
    Location
    Hayward Wi
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2230D

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    Don't know where your located but this will help you find ethanol free gas in your area. The difference in price is cheap considering the damage and repair costs of using ethanol blended gas.
    Ethanol-free gas stations in the U.S. and Canada

  8. #8
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Posts
    2,479
    Location
    Foster, RI
    Tractor
    Mahindra 3016

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    Quote Originally Posted by Toyboy View Post
    Don't know where your located but this will help you find ethanol free gas in your area. The difference in price is cheap considering the damage and repair costs of using ethanol blended gas.
    Ethanol-free gas stations in the U.S. and Canada
    If I have not missed something...It seems one will not be able to find an ethanol free gas station in the New England puritanical states of RI, Mass. or Conn?

  9. #9
    Silver Member Little Red Tractor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    129
    Location
    Gloversville NY
    Tractor
    Cub Cadet 6284

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    I think many of us find differing solutions to similar problems. I've run an old Stihl saw, a Stilh blower of the same vintage and a newer Husqvarna trimmer. I also have a generator powered by a Briggs and Stratton engine and a Yard Boss grinder/vacuum and a pressure washer both powered by B/S engines.
    I add Stabil to all my gas when I buy it and have no problems. I also add a touch of Star Tron additive. I've left fuel in all of them over the winters and have had no problems when using these additives.
    As for the mixing oil for the two strokes--I buy Tractor Supply's oil that mixes for all air-cooled engines and have had no problem with any of them.
    I also rotate the fuel out of the generator every year if I don't have occasion to use it...probably don't need to; but it makes me feel better about it.
    I've had a few engines die on me, but it's not been related to fuel or lubricant.

  10. #10
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    9
    Location
    frenchville.pa
    Tractor
    JOHNDEERE B

    Default Re: Give me tips/advise..

    BEST TO TREAT YOUR GAS AND YOU CAN LEAVE IT IN FOR 3 MONTHS MOST.
    I ONLY MIX ENOUGH GAS FOR 1 MONTH AT A TIME UNTREATED.
    THE ONLY PROUBLEM IVE HAD WITH ETHANOL IS IT EAT RUBBER GAS LINES.
    FOR LEAVING FUEL IN THE CARB **** IF YOU DO **** IF YOU DONT IT COULD DRY THE DIAPHRAMS EITHER WAY.

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