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Seafoam and alcohol in gas

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  • Seafoam and alcohol in gas

    I read all over the internet that Seafoam has alcohol and people don't trust it in their boat tank because that's what they are trying to protect it from. I don't know if I believe them because,

    At the Seafoam website they say: Sea Foam has been tested and proven to work well in Ethanol blended fuels since they first appeared in the 1990s – even the newest E-85 blend. Ethanol has the effect of stripping the protective layer of motor oil from the cylinder walls, so the addition of Sea Foam Motor Treatment to your fuel actually helps to combat this drying effect by adding upper cylinder lubrication that helps to prolong the life of your engine and its fuel system components. Additionally, Ethanol can absorb moisture and when ethanol reaches its saturation point can cause what is known as (phase separation) this is when the moisture and ethanol can separate from the gasoline causing drivability problems and potential engine damage. Sea Foam helps control moisture in fuel caused by condensation by breaking moisture into molecules and dispersing it throughout the fuel, if moisture can not pool or collect ethanol can not absorb the moisture and renders the moisture harmless.

    They also say: Regular use of Sea Foam in your fuel tank will help to ensure your injectors remain free of harmful deposits that can adversely affect your engine’s performance and fuel mileage.

    Any thoughts or better product like Stabil marine?


  • #2
    Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

    Just looked up the MSDS sheet for Seafoam:

    by weight:
    40-60% "pale oil" (light mineral oil)
    25-35% Naphtha
    10-20% IPA (isopropyl alcohol)

    Baby oil, lighter fluid and rubbing alcohol--- Kinda takes the magic out, doesn't it? But if you're afraid of alcohol in your gas, then don't use it!

    Something that IS good for your gas, and everything else in your engine is Marvel Mystery Oil... Hot rodders who make their own high octane fuel using Xylene or Toluene add it to their gas to make up for the lack of oil in those ingredients. It's good stuff, and a little in the gas tank helps with valve and cylinder ring oiling, it's supposed to be good to add a little to your engine oil too. It's wonderful for oiling control cables, or anything else that needs oil... Whether it helps counteract any effects of alcohol, or helps prolong the life of gasoline, not sure about that...

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    • #3
      Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

      SeaFoam has isopropyl alcohol, not ethanol.

      The feet you put in your car/truck gas tank in the winter, has isopropyl also.

      I use Seafoam and Sta-bil in all my boat gas, as I never know how long it will take to consume it all.

      I go thru about a gallon of Seafoam and a quart of sta-bil, per year.

      I don't use the marine/ethanol sta-bil, as I buy ethanol free gas for the boats.
      Medford, WI

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      • #4
        Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

        Originally posted by roscoe View Post
        SeaFoam has isopropyl alcohol, not ethanol.

        The feet you put in your car/truck gas tank in the winter, has isopropyl also.

        I use Seafoam and Sta-bil in all my boat gas, as I never know how long it will take to consume it all.

        I go thru about a gallon of Seafoam and a quart of sat-bil, per year.

        I don't use the marine/ethanol sat-bil, as I buy ethanol free gas for the boats.
        I don't know if you need the Sta-bil because Sea foam is suppose to keep fuel fresh for 2 years according to thier web site.

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        • #5
          Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

          Originally posted by Frantically Relaxing View Post
          Just looked up the MSDS sheet for Seafoam:

          by weight:
          40-60% "pale oil" (light mineral oil)
          25-35% Naphtha
          10-20% IPA (isopropyl alcohol)

          Baby oil, lighter fluid and rubbing alcohol--- Kinda takes the magic out, doesn't it? But if you're afraid of alcohol in your gas, then don't use it!

          Something that IS good for your gas, and everything else in your engine is Marvel Mystery Oil... Hot rodders who make their own high octane fuel using Xylene or Toluene add it to their gas to make up for the lack of oil in those ingredients. It's good stuff, and a little in the gas tank helps with valve and cylinder ring oiling, it's supposed to be good to add a little to your engine oil too. It's wonderful for oiling control cables, or anything else that needs oil... Whether it helps counteract any effects of alcohol, or helps prolong the life of gasoline, not sure about that...
          The light mineral oil must be what protects your engine, read my first post about what the web site says.

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          • #6
            Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

            Why can't we mix out own? Anyone have a recipe?

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            • #7
              Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

              I am sure you can mix your own. If you have the time and don't mind experimenting with your motor or you can buy it ready to go.

              Personally I have been using their product for a number of years and it works very well.
              sigpicJames & Deb

              Bad Dog

              If it aint broke your not having enough fun

              my 1988 Riviera Cruzer pontoon rebuild
              http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=526820

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              • #8
                Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                an often-debated topic, but one of the primary problems caused by ethanol is the phase seperation described in the first post. This occurs (a) over time and (b) with the introduction of water (including humid air) which is why the problems do not seem to occur in the frigid north as they do in the humid south, so don't compare the Minnesota guy's experience with the Louisiana guy's. High temps and temperature fluctuations add to the water intake.
                The time factor is what makes boats different than cars: we tend to run our car fuel out but boat gas can sit around--especially off season. if you use all your boat gas in two months, the gas won't have time to have problems.

                The alchohol in ethanol also breaks down and loosens up crud in the system, from the tank to the carb bowls, so the intitial introduction of E10 can cause those problems. But to the OP's point, isn't that what you do with a shock treatment? it also eats up old fuel lines--not a treatment issue but part of the picture.

                If you have ethanol-free gas, you usually won't have the problems in typical boating situations, so you really don't need to add the products constantly any more than you do your car. Just watch for long periods of idle fuel.

                The products are overlapping or sometimes redundant, so you don't need to use all of them. I use startron which is equivalent to stabil as far as I can tell, both in the motor I use frequently (Yam 150 carbed) and the one that I use every three months (old 70 johnson). I use ethanol (E10) in the Yam so I also use Yamaha's "Ring Free" which I am told is the equivalent of sea foam. Since I put no-ethanol gas in the Johnson, I only use the startron. So far so good, and I think I have solved old fuel problems and avoided new ones with this practice. All are stored outside on or near salt water in coastal Virginia: humid with big temperature swings.

                Remember there are two different functions: the shock treatment and the daily dose. Different purposes.

                Also remember that you can get bad gas from the station, sometimes mixed incorrectly with too much ethanol, sometimes with too much water in it (often at marinas).
                A man of constant boat tinkering.

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                • #9
                  Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                  The story I got was that Ole Evinrude, Mr. Johnson or both (OMC) needed something for outboards back in the 50's to take care of 2 cycle outboard problems. Seems they hired some chemist to come up with the secret. The oil is in it due to it being designed for 2 cycle engines which as we all know need oil with the fuel to lubricate the engine. 2 cycle engines don't need upper cylinder lubrication like 4 cycle engines as there is no upper cylinder if you will. I think the Naptha is to clean out the crud, like varnish and carbon, and the alcohol may be to attack moisture.

                  On mixing your own, have at it. For the little it costs when weighed against what it has done for me in the 8 years I have been using it, I'll stick with a proven winner. That way I don't have to worry about what kind of alkie or specifically what Naptha (a generic term for a lot of different hydrocarbons) I need to use.

                  This additive vs no additive discussion will go on forever. Take engine oil for example. WWs around here usually have an isle that is 6' high and some 30' long with nothing but 4 cycle engine oil. Apparently they are selling it because if it doesn't sell they don't keep it on the shelf. Some swear by using this, others that, others just grab the cheapest, others the highest price, some are new cars, others older cars with xxx miles and on and on.

                  Oh, and the Sea Foam, like the Sta-bil is always stocked in every WW in my shopping circuit. Actually every auto parts store I shop has it stocked along with Sta-bil and others.
                  ---------------------------
                  Now a short story. I had a boat I bought new in '72 with a built in gas tank. I worried about water in gas and all considering the fuel that was left in my 18 gallon built-in tank over the winter. I bought some kind of product that was said to eliminate water from the fuel. Fine. In it went. One day I was blasting across this large body of water with the usual wind blowing and all of a sudden my engine quit.

                  In short, upon removing the fuel line from the fuel connector at the engine and squeezing the primer bulb, this enormous blob of milky looking stuff came out initially and finally clean fuel. Put the line back on the connector, primed it up, and away I went.

                  Soooo, I figure what I had was water soaked alcohol, but water soaked alcohol is everywhere. It's in your mouthwash, in rubbing alcohol, and other places. It doesn't turn milky and gooey. To this day, not being a chemist although I had a year of it in high school, I haven't figured out the relationship.

                  My 2c and worth every penny you paid for it. Grin.
                  Mark
                  If you are new to boating or have a new boat, a knowledgeable friend could show you how to operate your boat and save you a lot of grief, maybe some money, and maybe your life.

                  Comment



                  • #10
                    Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                    I've been using Seafoam in every motor that I've owned for years. The isopropyl alcohol ingredient should take care of any moisture no matter where you live....
                    How to start an argument online:
                    1) Express an opinion
                    2) Wait

                    2003 1650 Crestliner Fishawk SC
                    Johnson 60hp, 4 stroke, electronic fuel inj.
                    1979 Crestliner Crusader II 2455
                    Volvo/Penta 260hp Chevy, 280 outdrive SOLD


                    sigpic

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                    • #11
                      Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                      A few years back I was visiting my sister in the Denver area near DIA. Since she lives in a flying community there is an abundance of aircraft around including a neighbor with a "Breezy". Doesn't make one iota of difference if you know what that is or not but when the lady pilot decided to go for a spin with it, step one was to check the fuel for water. Let's see now -- Denver is not known for high humidity but when she sampled the fuel drained into a glass jar, guess what -- lots of water. So do not compare the humid south with the tundra of Minnesota. Humidity up here is just as unbearable in the summer as it is down south. Been there - done that. People simply need to stop worrying so much about E-1o and the soon to arrive E-15. We've been using E-10 for decades in everything from weed whips to airplanes and if properly treated it is not a devil fuel. Lack of fuel system maintenance is the issue whether you run real gas or blended fuel. Treat the fuel and go boating. If there has been a switch recently in your area from regular fuel to E-10, then all the gunk that has build up over the years will be loosened up and deposited in filters, with some it making it's way into the carbs/injection systems. So much for no problem with regular fuel huh? That garp would have come loose sooner or later. Replace the rubber parts in your fuel system if they are not ethanol tolerant and go boating.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                        I hope Seafoam is the right stuff....... I loaded it up with ethanol free gas before storage......

                        Also, in regards to MN. We do have a high humidity issues in enclosures. (I rep outside plant pedestals and fiber enclosures for telephone companies) A gas tank would be an enclosure.

                        How you get water or humidity in enclosures is when you have high fluctuations in temperature, cold to hot or vise-a-versa - not necessarily with a steady ambient temperature. We have, in MN, at times, 50+ degree shifts in temperature overnight. I've opened up enclosures full of water and/or frost that are suppose to be dry. It will draw it from the stale air and/or in this case, from the ethanol.
                        2005 Sea Ray Weekender 215, w/ 5.0, Bravo III, Galvanized Tandem Trailer

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                        • #13
                          Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                          Generally speaking, Sea Foam is good stuff. While it does have a bit of isopropyl alcohol, it can't/won't damage your motor in any way. Seafoam essentially pure petroleum and is essentially an organic solvent that you add to the fuel help remove built up carbon deposits that can form on the pistons and head. It can also be used in your car/lawnmower, or virtually anything with a motor. It will, however, smoke like hell when you start it up, but that's normal. All the blue smoke is just the old carbon deposits burning away. Warn the neighbors (seriously), then take the motor out on the water and run it at WOT for a bit to bring it up to temp and burn off the remaining crud. You should notice better compression, smoother idle, and better overall performance. Check out youtube for tons of vids using it on their car/boat/etc...

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                          • #14
                            Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                            I agree with kfa4303 100%. I just started using Sea Foam in all my 4 and 2 cycle gasoline. It helps clean the carbs and injectors and carbon out and now all my engines are running like new.
                            sigpic
                            1999 Sea Ray Signature Series 190 BR
                            5.0 Mercruiser
                            Alpha I Gen II

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                            • #15
                              Re: Seafoam and alcohol in gas

                              Originally posted by Merc4ever View Post
                              I don't know if you need the Sta-bil because Sea foam is suppose to keep fuel fresh for 2 years according to thier web site.
                              Yeah, I don't generally use them both at the same time.
                              Use the Seafoam to keep the fuel system and carbs clean.
                              Medford, WI

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