Letter Re: Gas and Diesel Storage

Hi Hugh and Jim,
I am from Southeast Asia. Thank you for this article. I have been searching for answers to this topic for awhile, but I have not came across anything helpful out there. I have consulted with reps from oil and gas companies, but none were willing to share their insights on the matter. Since long-term storage for gasoline seems slim due to its inherent problems, would long-term storage of diesel to power generators, trucks, et cetera be a better option. Would the same problems related with quick expiry (instability), requiring special containers and flammability associated with gasoline that you have explained in your reply also apply to diesel? Appreciate your insights. – Mack

HJL Replies: Diesel fuel is processed less than other fuels that are readily available. As such, it is inherently more stable. While the life of untreated gasoline is measured in months, diesel has no problem lasting for more than a year in an untreated state. The addition of stabilizer will increase that easily to the five year mark or more. All fuels have issues with water, and diesel needs to be protected from water and condensation in the tank. Algae is the number one enemy, as it will happily coexist in a diesel fuel tank that has water in it. Your best bet is to keep the tank full to reduce air space and condensation and treat it with an algaecide. (A commercially available diesel stabilizer usually contains an algaecide, but check the label to be sure.)

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