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Petrol driven equipment and the new E10 fuel

As you may or may not be aware from September we we have to start using the new E10 fuel. This fuel has a higher ethanol content and as a result is known to cause engine damage to vehicles. Other than parts of Scotland the existing E5 fuel is going to be limited to a few filling stations. As many of use petrol driven tools I use a tiller on my allotment does anyone have any information as to what needs to be done to prevent damage to the equipment. I have emailed Mantis with this question and am waiting for a reply. Do we for example have to buy an additive to prevent damage.


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 33,757
    I've heard some say you move to super unleaded for strimmer, chainsaws etc. but I've no idea really. 
    I'm going to check with My Man who fixes my stuff

  • Col3Col3 Posts: 3
    Super unleaded is the E5 fuel I live in Cardiff when I googled the filling stations that will sell it only three came up the closest will be a 10 mile round trip for a can of fuel
  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,642
    Mantis say in their manuals that both 2 stroke and 4 stroke engines are OK with E10 fuel.
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 7,714
    @col3 and @Hostafan1

    Had a recent email from the engineer who services my Honda lawnmower. He is concerned about the new fuel directives and his advice is to buy the E5 whenever you can find it.

    If you have to use E10 he thinks the only way to minimise problems is to not leave fuel in any machines which will be unused for more than 2 - 3 weeks. If the fuel is left in the machines it will probably cause corrosion / perishing of parts. Removing the fuel means either syphoning it off or burning it off (that's good for the environment isn't it?).

    During the summer there shouldn't be too much of a problem with the lawnmower - but I'm going to have to remember once we get into autumn. 

    If I can find it I'll post a copy of his advice.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 7,714
    Ok - I've had a look and it's a posting on 'Nextdoor' so I can't copy it. 

    His advise is that the problem is down to the hydroscopic properties of the increased ethanol content in the E10 fuel. Water in fuel can cause corrosion of parts and will increase the risk of bio-organisms growing in the fuel.

    He thinks 2-stroke engines will be ok due to the oil but that 4 stroke engines need to be treated as above.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,642
    Not leaving fuel in garden machinery has been standard advice for many years now. Stale fuel has always been a source of trouble for small engines. It doesn't help that disposing of stale fuel isn't easy.
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 7,714
    edited August 2021
    Yes Steephill - draining / burning off fuel has always been considered good practice before laying up tools - but definitely potential now for problems if it's not done.

    Personally, I shall be using premium E5 fuel if I can get it and (come autumn) I'll not be filling the lawnmower to the top as I do in summer - putting just enough in to do the job. From November to March I'll probably use Aspen (no ethanol) if I really need to use the lawnmower (I use it for hoovering and chopping up as well as cutting grass).
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • KT53KT53 Posts: 7,771
    Aspen ain't cheap.  It's even dearer than posh bottled water! :smiley:
  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy Posts: 6,008
    Yes I have heard that Super unleaded will remain as E5. Honda, and Briggs Stratton used to sell fuel stabilising additives,  not sure if they still do or if it will work with E10. I might try to find out.  I remember when unleaded first came in the was an upsurge in the sales of additives such as Reddex, though then it was to prevent valve/ valve seat damage. 
    AB Still learning

  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy Posts: 6,008
    I have just checked,  you can get still get  both,  the Briggs Stratton one (called fuel fit) reckons it now protects from the effects of ethanol corrosion.  They cost about £7.50 for a 250 ml bottle,  10 ml treats from 3 to 5 litres of fuel. On pure cost it's probably cheaper to buy super unleaded if available in your area,  but IMHO it's worth it anyway as it saves all the faf of draing out or running dry etc. Makes starting easier too.  My bottle of the Honda one has lasted 3 years. 
    AB Still learning

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