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  1. #1
    Cadet
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    Default What kind of gas to use

    I just purchased my first boat so I am not sure what kind of gas to use. I have a 1998 150 mercury outboard and it did not come with an owner's manual. Recently, I put the low grade gas with ethanol in it and the motor seems to sputter more. Do I need to add a gas additive or switch to gas without ethanol?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Use 87 octane pump gas, with or without Ethanol, use Stabil all the time, but a bit more when fuel may be sitting in the tank for several weeks or months between boat use, install a fuel/water separator type filter(Walmart/Attwood unit $27), it will help stop water/dirty fuel related problems. If your motor is not running right, you may need to get carbs cleaned, check spark plugs, etc. Good Luck!

  3. #3
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Installing a water seperator is a good idea. Regular pump gasoline w/ ethanol is fine. Stabilizer is not needed until winter, if even then.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris1956 View Post
    Installing a water seperator is a good idea. Regular pump gasoline w/ ethanol is fine. Stabilizer is not needed until winter, if even then.
    Well, I use Stabil all the time and never have any fuel problems at all. So the price of Stabil is worth it for my peace of mind, especially since my boat may sit for a couple of months between uses. In fact, I use Stabil in my lawnmowers, weed-eaters, blowers, etc., keeps the gas from screwing up the carbs. Good Luck!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by robert graham View Post
    Well, I use Stabil all the time and never have any fuel problems at all. So the price of Stabil is worth it for my peace of mind, especially since my boat may sit for a couple of months between uses. In fact, I use Stabil in my lawnmowers, weed-eaters, blowers, etc., keeps the gas from screwing up the carbs. Good Luck!
    You use stabil....I use nothing, neither of us have any problems.....what does that tell you.

    I'm not saying products like stabil aren't of any value, only that using them all the time is a waste of money, but does give peace of mind.

  6. #6

    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    My 2 cents..... A critical point is what BRAND of gas you put in the engine. Cheap gas from those little store combination stations are quite often the tank bottoms from major brands. Lots of impurities and high percentages of undesireable compounds. I found Arco & Shell 87 octane to be the best. Chevron gas seemed to cause higher engine temperatures when I was racing my Merc 40HP.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Hay Sentinel, do you think those mom-and-pop stores have their own refineries? Their gasoline comes from the same refineries as everyone else. It can be a bit older since the demand is less, so the tank is not refilled too often.

    Robert, I think I will invest in Stabil stock, just cause guys like you spend their money on that stuff..unnecessarily

  8. #8
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by sentinel View Post
    My 2 cents..... A critical point is what BRAND of gas you put in the engine. Cheap gas from those little store combination stations are quite often the tank bottoms from major brands. Lots of impurities and high percentages of undesireable compounds. I found Arco & Shell 87 octane to be the best. Chevron gas seemed to cause higher engine temperatures when I was racing my Merc 40HP.
    From another site by a person in the industry.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Quote:
    What is different between the Xon gas and say Shell or Chevon?


    Proprietary additives. Chevron uses Techron, Shell uses whatever theirs is called, and Exxon used to use BASF. Additives are what "brands" the gas. Exxon no longer has branded gas (at least not around here) so their gas is "generic" like unbranded stations. I work in a storage terminal that used to have Exxon product. We stored Exxon BASF additive that was injected into base gas at our loading rack. The Exxon additive was for Exxon's branded stations ONLY. A few years back, Exxon pulled out, so more more Exxon additive. They still sell unbranded gas that gets a generic additive.

    Base gas is fungible. It doesn't matter who refined it, shipped it, stored it, or what country it came from. The only difference are the additives that are injected into the gas while it's being loaded on to the tanker truck.
    Branded gas MUST go to it's corresponding branded station. It's a big no-no to dump unbranded gas at a branded station or vice-versa, or to dump a load of Chevron at a Shell station.


    Quote:
    Why is one good or better than the other?

    Additives again. But a while ago (before the ethanol mandate) some brands (ARCO and a few others) were selling E10 year-round while everybody else sold clear gas. Due to tax breaks and other mischief they were always cheaper thaneverybody else. But now we have mandatory 10% ethanol, so it's all pretty much crap.


    Quote:
    If the gas sits in the storage yard tanks for months, why it is, some say gas goes bad in several weeks?

    Old wive's tale. It takes a lot longer that that for gas to go "bad". On the other hand, large storage tanks aren't like other tanks. They're designed to prevent vapor accumulation and emissions. Basically, there's no evaporation, even though the tanks have to be vented. There's a lot more to a tank than just a big steel cylinder, which is why they cost a bloody fortune to build and maintain.


    Quote:
    i worked in an independant gas station at one time. it was called red bird. when we got gas it came from different gas companies. most of the time it came from marathon. and we never added anything to our gas. my son worked at a marathon station. he said they didnt add anything there. so if the gas comes from the same truck its got to be the same gas.

    Yes and no. A carrier (tanker) can load wherever he wants, or at least wherever he's authorized to. I used to haul branded ARCO gas, but it wasn't an ARCO truck. I worked for a carrier that contracted to ARCO to pull loads that ARCO didn't have enough trucks for. Some ARCO station owners used to get irritated when I'd pull in in a "Plain Jane" truck to deliver their gas. They said that it reinforced rumors that ARCO was selling whatever gas it could get it's hands on, which is true at the wholesale level, but true for everybody.

    And BTW, I'll end my monologue with a note about carriers. BP is the only "major" oil company left in Portland that runs their own trucks. Chevron pulled out of the transportation side about a year ago. Shell/Texaco a few years before that. There's some "76" (Conoco) trucks running around, but they're not owned, at least officially, by Conoco.
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    05-22-2011, 03:28 PM #9
    sadiesassy
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    Posts: 874 Re: why is cheaper gas not good gas ?

  9. #9
    Supreme Mariner Silvertip's Avatar
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris1956 View Post
    Installing a water seperator is a good idea. Regular pump gasoline w/ ethanol is fine. Stabilizer is not needed until winter, if even then.
    Bad advice sir. Stabilizer is not a "seasonal" issue. It is a "storage" issue. If one does not use a lot of fuel adding a fuel system treatment is essential to avoid fuel issues. If uses fuel quickly, then it is not as important. Keep in mind that fuel system treaments are not just intended to keep fuel from going bad. Products like Sea Foam help keep the fuel system clean as well.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Comparing the price/costs of fuel additives like Stabil and Ringfree against the aggravation, time and costs of plugged carbs/injectors/fuel systems, it's a no-brainer for me. I don't care to drag my boat 500 miles to Florida just to have a plugged up fuel system ruin the trip for me and the wife. My motor is a 1999 and so far it's been 100% dependable, all the time, every time. It's called preventive maintenance. Good Luck!

  11. #11
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    I typically use Exxon (only because it's close) and I always use the highest octane, typically 93. I may be wrong but I've always heard the the higher octane burns more efficiently and maybe hotter which could possible enhance performance.

    I can't find any stations anymore that advertise "No Ethanol" so I guess I'm stuck the the Eth crap.

    hd883chopper.

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  12. #12
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    "[quote] Comparing the price/costs of fuel additives like Stabil and Ringfree against the aggravation, time and costs of plugged carbs/injectors/fuel systems, it's a no-brainer for me. I don't care to drag my boat 500 miles to Florida just to have a plugged up fuel system ruin the trip for me and the wife. My motor is a 1999 and so far it's been 100% dependable, all the time, every time. It's called preventive maintenance. Good Luck! "

    That's what I mean by "peace of mind".

    The motor I use the most is a 1998 that I've had since it was new, it's had stabil in it about three times and seafoam maybe three times during its life. I have never had a single issue, whether it sits for only a day, or many months, it always starts and runs fine with no additives.

    What it means is that few people have issues whether they use every additive all the time, or none of them. Again, I'm not saying some of these additives aren't useful in some circumstances. Only that using them 100% of the time is a "feel good" preventative maintenance plan.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by hd883chopper View Post
    I typically use Exxon (only because it's close) and I always use the highest octane, typically 93. I may be wrong but I've always heard the the higher octane burns more efficiently and maybe hotter which could possible enhance performance.


    hd883chopper.
    Incorrect.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Thanks for the support Ondarvr. I have been boating since the 60s, and did not know about fuel stabilizers until the late 90s. I am surprized all my motors still run - sarcasm

    My fuel sits for weeks until I use it up, in my speedboat and oops, I forgot to fog her last winter, it is amazing it still runs - more sarcasm

    Seriously if spending $$ on additives make you feel better, it beats paying a mental health professional, or kicking the dog. I have my doubts they are necessary.

    BTW - High-test fuel burns at a lower temperature than regular fuel. It is also more resistant to pre-detonation. On some motors you can take advantage of this property and advance the ign timing for better performance.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Simply put, if you are going to buy the sales pitch then you are going to buy the product.

    Is Stabil needed in every tank of gas? NO

    Can you do it to make you feel better? SURE

    All I know is the methods that I use have never lead to a fuel related problem in the last 30 years so that's what I do.

    If people want to spend their money on whatever makes them feel better then let them, I'm not going to run out and buy "the next best thing" that comes onto the market just because the manufacturer makes claims about it.
    1985 Baretta Vanguard 16ft & 1984 Evinrude 75hp O/B

    ****Running your motor without water is like peeing into the wind, it's a stupid impulse that is going to be a mess later****

  16. #16
    Seaman Apprentice hd883chopper's Avatar
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by ondarvr View Post
    Incorrect.
    Which part? Or are all these assumptions wrong?

    93 Burns more efficiently?
    93 Burns hotter?
    93 could improve performance?

    Thx,
    hd883chopper

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    5.7 Mercruiser w/ Volvo DuoProp Outdrive

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  17. #17
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by hd883chopper View Post
    Which part? Or are all these assumptions wrong?

    93 Burns more efficiently?
    93 Burns hotter?
    93 could improve performance?



    Thx,
    hd883chopper

    All three, with a slight possibly of #3 being right with the correct engine.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by ondarvr View Post
    All three, with a slight possibly of #3 being right with the correct engine.

    93 Burns more efficiently?
    Not true.


    93 Burns hotter?
    Absolutely not true,


    93 could improve performance?
    Maybe.......BUT ONLY if the engine pings on REG (or requires higher octane fuel..........most don't)

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  19. #19
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    You DO NOT need high octane fuel, in a 2 stroke outboard.

    The high octane fuel actually burns COOLER/Slower (to help with detonation issues) but has a tendency to leave MORE deposits. Certain Death to a 2 stroke outboard.

    The issue with todays ethanol laced fuels is their affinity (attraction) to water. In a completely sealed system, as mentioned above, that is of no issue. However, few, boat systems are sealed.

    Proof of point. I resurrected one of my pretty little Evinrude 3's (1966) that had been sitting for four years-untouched. I filled it with ethanol based fuel four years ago. I also added the proper ration of TCW-3 oil and Sea Foam. That little engine has a completely sealed fuel system, once you shut off the fuel draincock and the tank vent.

    After four years, the fuel smelled perfectly OK and it started-first pull. It ran for two hours with NO issues on that old fuel. Keep in mind, that fuel system was 100% sealed-nothing in, nothing out..

    Personaly, I can attest to the fuel additive from Chevron (Techron). I had an older Mustang that the fuel gauge would be erratic. A service bulletin recommended adding "Techron" to the fuel to clean the gauge sender contacts. Two treatments-viola!. Problem solved.

    With all of that said, I put Sea Foam in everything I run, except cars/trucks. The rationale behind not adding to cars/trucks is that they get filled at least twice/week.

    I have NO fuel issues with power equipment/boats using Sea Foam. Cheap insurance, in my book.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by DJ View Post
    Proof of point. I resurrected one of my pretty little Evinrude 3's (1966) that had been sitting for four years-untouched. I filled it with ethanol based fuel four years ago. I also added the proper ration of TCW-3 oil and Sea Foam. That little engine has a completely sealed fuel system, once you shut off the fuel draincock and the tank vent.
    After four years, the fuel smelled perfectly OK and it started-first pull. It ran for two hours with NO issues on that old fuel.
    Come on man! You could probably PEE in an old 3 hp tank and it would still run....

  21. #21
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by tx1961whaler View Post
    Come on man! You could probably PEE in an old 3 hp tank and it would still run....
    Depending on what you drank prior to the aforementioned peeing, this might work
    1985 Baretta Vanguard 16ft & 1984 Evinrude 75hp O/B

    ****Running your motor without water is like peeing into the wind, it's a stupid impulse that is going to be a mess later****

  22. #22
    DJ
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Quote Originally Posted by tx1961whaler View Post
    Come on man! You could probably PEE in an old 3 hp tank and it would still run....
    I won't take that as an insult. I was proving a point of: "sealed". As mentioned above. Read the whole thread.

    And NO, those engines are actually sensitive to fuel quality. The carb's are small and the orifices are prone to plugging. Read the J & E thread.

    We'll leave it at that.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    More stuff

    Quote:
    So, it is safe to assume that basically every local station sucks through the same straw from one giant milkshake? Only the flavors (additives) are different?

    Yeah, with a caveat. Occasionally I'll see a batch in the pipeline tagged as "segregated", but we don't treat it any differently than the "fungible". I can't say for sure what everybody else does. It doesn't happen very often. If you really want to segregate a product, you need a dedicated tank, and that can get pretty spendy. We used to segregate some gas about 10 years ago, but I haven't seen it since then.
    And the gas you get outside of the Willamette Valley from June to September is a bit different. Portland has stricter emission standards during the summer so the gas has to meet DEQ's criteria. It only affects the gas' emissions in a static state and doesn't affect the way it burns in your car.

    So, yes, only the additives are different.


    Quote:
    If my understanding remains correct, all additives must meet the federal guidelines set forth for this particular item. I would like to compare it to generic drugs.....pay more for the name brand, but you can still kill the same back ache with the cheaper stuff.

    Yep, but some additives are proprietary. I never bothered to check, but Techron might be a corporate secret. I work with a guy who used to work for Mobil's lube division, and he told me that Mobil 1's chemical composition is a closely guarded secret known only to a few of Exxon/Mobil's insiders.
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  24. #24
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    Another post from the same thread by a different person in the industry.

    Like 1pump stated all the gas is stored from several supliers in the same tanks. I've been hauling off the kinder Morgan pipeline which used to be owned by southern pacifc. I've been loading there for near 30 yrs. it used to be each co. had their own storage tank but now it all gets traded backin forth. If one supplier is low & doesn't have a tender comming down the pipe they will borrow from another supplier & pay them back when their product comes in. What makes it brand specific is the additive thats going in along with the 10% ethenol as I load my truck.
    I work for a small jobber that was started up after wwII & was Shell. Shell pulled out of Oregon for a number of years so we switched to Texaco our buisness doubled. After a 5 yr contract we switched over our stations to Chevron & we are still pumping the same volume. A few more years & I'm going to be a full time fisherman (well when my wife lets me).

  25. #25
    DJ
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    Default Re: What kind of gas to use

    The question Was:

    What kind of Gas to Use?

    Not; what brand, etc. This thread is going off track quickly. I'm guilty too as this morphed into; storage, etc.

    I believe the original poster's answer has been given. If not, they can PM me.

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