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Winterize Your Fuel System

The winter season is quickly approaching. This means lots of loose ends to tie up around the garage and equipment that needs to be put in storage until next spring. From a young age I was always taught to drain the gas out of all the lawn equipment and run the engine until the carburetor was completely empty. Otherwise, there would be problems and more work in the spring. That has always worked for me but isn’t there an easier way? Yes, Sunoco Race Fuels have a wide variety of specialty fuels that can solve all of your fuel issues. Of course, fuel for racing is our primary market but our fuels excel in many other applications as well, like storage. We have products designed for everything from collector cars to modern day hyper cars.

Storing a car for months or even years without any fuel related issues takes two things: a quality fuel and the correct procedure. A complete list of tips on storage can be found in our Race Fuel Storage article but listed below are the main takeaways. Keep the tank full, run the engine until the storage fuel has circulated through the entire fuel system and keep the tank sealed as much as possible, cap on tight.

All Sunoco Race Fuels are made from highly refined components and contain an excellent additive package to make them stable for years. Our non-ethanol blends are recommended for storage applications to prevent dissolved water from corroding the fuel system. Pump fuels contain dissolved gums that can form varnish over time during storage. Varnish forming in your fuels system can mean carburetor rebuilding and overall poor engine drivability. Sunoco race fuels are engineered to prevent any varnish or deposits in order to leave a clean fuel system all the time.

Sunoco Surge is the fuel for storing any classic or vintage car born when leaded fuels were still around. Surge was developed for the classic/vintage car market. This fuel is dosed with about the same amount of lead found in high octane fuels in the 1960s and has an octane of 105 which will surpass the needs of any stock or lightly modified collector car. Surge is also a non-ethanol fuel and is compatible with gaskets and fuel systems on older cars.

For winterizing modern cars that can’t digest leaded fuels, we offer Sunoco Optima. Optima is a 95 octane unleaded fuel that is safe to be used in anything with an oxygen sensor or catalytic converter. Optima is a non-ethanol fuel which makes it great for carbureted lawn equipment applications like lawn mowers and leaf blowers that often struggle with ethanol-blended pump gas. Optima has been proven for over 5 years to keep small engines running season after season without annual carburetor rebuilds. Optima is a very versatile fuel and has shown great success in all gasoline engines.

Now that you know which products to use to get through winter, you may be wondering what is the best choice to get your vehicle back on the road in the spring. Sunoco offers street legal unleaded 100 octane fuels for performance vehicles. If you are in California you can find it as Sunoco SS100; in the other 49 states you will find Sunoco 260 GT. Both of these fuels contain 10% ethanol to attain their street legal status. For drivers looking for the best performance on the street and on the track this 10% ethanol will allow for slightly better performance in engines that can take advantage of the fuel. Ethanol contains oxygen in its molecule which can account for slightly better performance over a non-ethanol fuel.

If this article has left you curious about other specialty fuels, you can find more technical articles on our Tech Corner page. You can also find a map of locations that sell our fuels and if you need to ask a specific question feel free to call 1-800-RACE-GAS (800-722-3427).