As temperatures get colder, it is time to start thinking about winterizing your equipment. Whether you have a leaf blower, chainsaw, or any other gas-powered tool, proper storage during the winter months is essential to ensure they remain in excellent working condition when spring rolls around. Depending on the frequency you will be using your saw throughout the winter, these fuel-related strategies will help see your equipment through the cold season.
- Completely remove the fuel if you don't plan to use equipment during the winter.
- Phase-separation may occur when storing gas for an extended period of time, which can cause damage to your equipment's engine.
- Stihl MotoMix can help prevent phase-separation during periods of storage, extending the life of your equipment.
Storing Equipment Full Time
If you are not going to be using your equipment during the winter, you should run the fuel out of it completely. Properly storing your gas-powered equipment for the winter is essential for maintaining its longevity and ensuring it starts up without a hitch when spring arrives. Stihl recommends using MotoMix®, a premixed fuel, after draining the previous gas. Run the MotoMix® until it is completely gone to ensure there is no more of the old fuel in the tank. Dispose of the old fuel in accordance with all applicable local, state, or national regulations.
Infrequent Equipment Use
If you plan to use your saw a handful of times this winter it is a good idea to use MotoMix® as your primary fuel. Stihl’s premixed fuel provides an extended storage life that lasts longer than ethanol-based fuel. It also prevents phase-separation, where fuel and the water in the fuel split into two layers. Below is an example of phase-separation:
Ethanol attracts 50% more water than pure fuel due to the water-attraction properties of alcohol present in ethanol, increasing the chance of phase-separation. When this happens the layer of water can corrode the bottom of the tank when sitting for too long. Once the engine is started, it runs the layer of water through first, creating a potential for internal saw damage. MotoMix® eliminates this problem by using high-octane motor fuel and their highest-quality oil. If you are going to be putting your saw on the shelf for more than 2 weeks you should avoid using any fuel containing ethanol.
Frequent Equipment Use
If you plan to be using your saw weekly, stick with non-oxygenated fuel. This is the best way to dodge phase separation. Even sitting for only a few days, changes in temperature create more water buildup in the tank. When fueling up your saw, always use ethanol-free fuel whether that be non-oxygenated fuel or MotoMix®.
Additional recommendations and fuel guidelines can be found in your owner’s manual, and as always, feel free to contact our service team for questions about storing and winterizing your equipment.
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