It is obvious that fuel is a vital component of your vehicle's daily operation. But the problem is that most people do not realize how harmful fuel can be for the engine if it is left to sit for an extended period of time. But why?
Fuel consists of various volatile compounds that, over time, start oxidizing and evaporating, causing damage to your engine and fuel system. To prevent that, you should consider adding a high-quality fuel stabilizer to your vehicle's tank. This will, for sure, allow you some peace of mind while your car is stored in a garage for several months.
That is why in today's article, I will introduce the best fuel stabilizers on the market and some of the most frequently asked questions considering the usage of these products.
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Last Updated: June 20, 2021
By James Ruhle: This article has been updated to reflect the most accurate information regarding best fuel stabilizers available for those who are interested in having great fuel performance. The best 5 available have changed, and information has been added to assist individuals in finding the best fuel stabilizers currently available on the market. The FAQ has also been updated.
Current Top Fuel Stabilizers On The Market- Comparison Table
Gasoline and ethanol-based fuel
Gasoline and ethanol-based fuel
All types of fuel
Gasoline and ethanol-based fuel
All types of fuel
Best Fuel Stabilizers On The Market- Individual Reviews
As said, engine fuel contains volatile compounds that can easily evaporate and oxidize when your fuel sits unprotected for too long in the gas tank. But the bigger problem is that the oxidation creates new compounds which can cause some serious damages to your engine.
Therefore, it is crucial to prevent fuel deterioration by using the best fuel stabilizers. In short, a fuel stabilizer is a chemical compound that prevents oxidation from occurring, and that way, it maintains fuel fresh and clean for longer periods of time.
If you bought and used the best fuel stabilizer, your fuel should stay fresh for approximately 24 months. But considering there are so many of them available on the market to choose from, it is obvious you will need some help.
So here, you are looking at a list of the best performing fuel stabilizers that I had a pleasure to use and test for you.
1. STA-BIL 22214 Fuel Stabilizer - Editor’s Choice
Our Rating: 95/100
Sta-Bil 22214 fuel stabilizer is one of the best stabilizers available on the market nowadays for the given price tag.
This fuel additive is a great choice for protecting your vehicle for prolonged periods of time, considering it eliminates the need to drain the fuel from 2 and 4 cycle engines. It removes water from the fuel to protect your vehicle from corrosion; also, it cleans carburetors (if you ride an older vehicle model) and fuel injectors this way. But why is this important?
Well, if you plan to store your vehicle that runs on gasoline and ethanol fuel blends, during the winter season for over a month or two, the 22214 fuel stabilizer will keep the fuel fresh. In fact, it can keep fuel fresh for up to 24 months! This fuel stabilizer will allow you to start up your engine quickly and easily even after months of rest in the storage.
You can also use this fuel stabilizer for marine vehicles, lawn mowers, collector cars, snow blowers as well generators. You can be sure this product will protect your engine from gum, varnish, rust, and corrosion, and will prevent the evaporating of the fuel based on ethanol.
The Sta-Bil fuel stabilizer isn't a great choice for every situation. For example, it is not suitable to use in case you need a product that will improve the gas mileage in your daily driver. Also, this formula works only with gas-powered engines, so if your vehicle is powered by an engine that runs on diesel fuel, you will need to look for some other fuel stabilizer.
Our Rating: 89/100
The Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment features a unique enzyme technology especially crafted to work great for both gasoline and ethanol fuel. It is compatible to use in your daily vehicle as well as in a vehicle that you plan to keep stored for several months.
The formula will prevent ethanol fuel from evaporating as well from phase separation by simply breaking down excess water and sludge if there are any smaller particles left by any chance it will be safely burned up when you run your engine.
This formula will clean the fuel injectors as well as carburetors and allow your vehicle to operate more efficiently and reduce emissions. It will, for sure, get rid of things like carbon deposits, corrosion, varnish, and gums. Remember, a cleaner fuel system means your vehicle will give you better performance. That also leads to significant improvements in your overall gas mileage.
This additive will allow you to store your vehicle for up to several months during winter, and it can keep your fuel fresh and stable for up to 2 years. You can be sure your engine will run smoothly even after it was not active for a prolonged period of time.
Since the formula is very concentrated, just 8 ounces of it will be enough to stabilize 128 gallons of fuel, making this product a very economical choice.
There are few things that are troublesome such as a bottle design. You will not be able to pour it out properly without using the funnel. Also, Star Tron fuel stabilizer, as well as the STA BIL product, is not suitable to use with an engine that runs on diesel fuel.
The Lucas 10001 fuel stabilizer is 100% based on petroleum, so you can be sure you can safely blend it with other additives such as mineral oil, ATF, or synthetic lubricants. It is safe for all types of engines, including diesel ones. Regular use will increase both the power of the engine and gas mileage.
As a matter of fact, the manufacturer claims that this product will improve the lifespan of your engine at least 50% and probably even more. This is one of the few products that actually reduce oil consumption while at the same time, enhance miles and power per gallon.
This fuel and oil stabilizer is suitable to use with small cars, SUV, CUV, trucks, and pickup trucks. But that is not all you can use it in other machines that you store over an extended period of time like lawn mowers, snowblowers, air compressors and many more.
It will not only eliminate dirt, clogs, gunk, and carbon; it will as well help your engine to run seamlessly and smoothly. As already said, it will reduce oil usage since it provides better lubrication, stabilizes the temperature of your oil, and removes all harmful components. This product is safe for seals and rubbers, and it will help you stop the leaks.
Since it will reduce mechanical friction and dry starts, you can expect that your engine will run quietly without risk of wear and tear. This product is suitable to use with both new and old engines. But there are few downsides. The first one is that it won't do a good job with some new models of engine and the second one is that old engines will need permanent and regular use which can be very expensive at the end.
Yamalube is a fuel stabilizer and conditioner that comes from a reliable motorcycle brand Yamaha. They designed this original OEM alcohol-free formula to stabilize and condition explicitly E10 gasoline.
The formula is alcohol-free, so it is ideal for use in both 2 and 4 stroke engines. Once applied, the formula helps protect fuel system components made from metal and aluminum. It will as well protect your fuel system from ethanol fuel rust and corrosion, which is a serious and unfortunately widespread problem in many engines.
Since it is alcohol-free, it also prevents phase separation, the buildup of varnish and gum, and even fuel oxidation and evaporation. This will keep your engine clean as new, further enhancing the engine's efficiency and overall gas mileage. You can be sure your engine will run smoothly and quietly, no matter how long it was left to sit in the garage.
The product comes in a bottle of 32 ounces, and it is very concentrated. This amount will be enough to stabilize and condition five gallons of fuel. It is ideal to use in generators, lawnmowers, snowblowers, cars, as well as motorcycles. This product is very efficient, and it will keep your fuel fresh up to 2 years, even in harsh winter conditions.
Like every product, this one as well as downsides. The first is the price. The second one is that it is not compatible for use in diesel engines, just like most other brands from this list. But you should not take this as a deal-breaker keeping in mind how good it works with gasoline and other fuels.
Our Rating: 80/100
This Royal Purple 11722 fuel stabilizer grows more popular from day to day among car fanatics. It is also very well known as the best fuel stabilizer for motorcycles. This fuel additive will stabilize any motorcycle fuel regardless of the type with its highly effective 3-in-1 function.
Those functions include a reduction in carbon deposits and other emissions, it will also restore and improve the fuel economy for at least 3.2 percent, and it will increase the horsepower for an average of 2.6 percent.
Royal Purple product is compatible to use with both 2 and 4 stroke engines that are powered with diesel, gasoline, as well as ethanol blends fuels. In fact, that means this product is practically one of the best fuel stabilizers for all kinds of engines.
The 11722 also prevents stalling, evaporation, phase separation in ethanol-based fuels, varnishing, and corrosion. Your engine will run smoothly without any trace of hesitation or idling problems even after months of waiting in the storage.
But that is not all this fuel stabilizer will improve your vehicle's performance by keeping your fuel system clean and well protected. This will, of course, lead to the improvement of overall gas mileage. There is one downside, though, and that is how expensive it is to use this fuel stabilizer on a regular basis, considering that the bottle of 20-ounces can only treat 20 gallons of fuel.
Best Fuel Stabilizer FAQ
Is Sea Foam a good fuel stabilizer?
The most important thing to realize is that not even one product on the market is a fix-it-all solution. Also, as you saw it usually diesel fuel engines require specially designed products to keep them working properly.
Fortunately, Sea Foam fuel stabilizer is compatible to use with both gasoline and diesel engines. But just like with all products, you must follow the instructions for optimal usage. If you use too much of this particular fuel stabilizer, you will over dilute engine oil, which is not good at all.
So let’s repeat once more, follow the directions, and your car will, for sure, benefit from this product.
What does a fuel stabilizer do?
As you know, fuel is a dynamic liquid, and when you leave it to sit around for quite some time, it can turn rancid. According to some research, fuel will, unfortunately, start deteriorating after just one month unless you store it in a completely airtight container with no chance of oxidation at all.
The car’s fuel system is not airtight, so you will need to protect your fuel in some other way. When a vehicle is driven, the gasoline burns up before it begins to evaporate and deteriorate. But when you plan to store your vehicle for several months, you must protect your fuel from evaporation, and that is where fuel stabilizers can help you a lot.
On the other hand, fuel stabilizers do not play any prominent role in everyday life. However, they can still enhance the performance of your engine so you may consider using it regularly.
Do fuel stabilizers really work?
Let’s get over with one thing first. Gasoline is a blend of various chemicals, so naturally, over some period, it will start to break down since it will be exposed to oxygen and moisture from the air that surrounds it. No matter if you store your vehicle with a full tank of gas (to keep as much air out as you can), oxidation will still occur.
Modern gasoline is at greater risk because it contains a high percentage of ethanol, which is very potent for attracting and absorbing water, which only accelerates the breakdown of fuel.
Depending on the quality of your fuel in a period of three to six months, the process of oxidation will start to deteriorate gasoline to the point where it becomes a sticky, varnish-like liquid that is no good at all.
But the worst part is that it will clog your fuel system as well as gum up your pump, injectors, and tank. Well, this scenario will happen if you do not use the best fuel stabilizer for your type of engine.
Fuel stabilizer is a reliable and most inexpensive insurance you can acquire when planning long term storage of your car, motorcycle, truck, or some small-engine tool such as a lawn mower. The point is that the fuel stabilizer will create a protective layer for the fuel that sits in the tank and bind with it to prevent evaporation.
So yes, you can say it actually does the job as claimed.
How long will fuel stabilizer keep gas fresh?
Usually, fuel stabilizer will keep fuel fresh for up to 24 months. But this greatly depends on the quality, type, source of the gasoline, as well as storage conditions.
However, you must be aware that if gasoline was stored for more than 24 months, it will probably lose volatility, which could lead to hard, dry starting or no start conditions at all. The fuel stabilizer will prevent your fuel from turning bad, but it won’t be able to reverse the bad gas into a good one after it was stored for too long. However, you can add fuel stabilizers when it already started to deteriorate to prevent further degradation.
If you want to reduce the loss of fuel volatility during storing, it is recommended to fill your tank at least 95% full with fresh fuel and fuel stabilizer of your choice. Make sure you store your vehicle in cool conditions and away from direct sunlight to prevent any risky situations.
After It's All Said and Done, I Recommend:
Choosing the best fuel stabilizer can be a tricky task if you are not sure what your vehicle requires exactly. But that can be easily resolved if you spare some time now and read this article where I enlisted the best possible options and all their pros and cons.
Of course that after hours and hours of thorough research I found my favorite and that is STA-BIL 22214 Fuel Stabilizer.
This fuel stabilizer will offer you the best value for the price, and it will maintain your vehicle in the best possible shape, so there is no need to be afraid of any unexpected expense after the winter is gone.
In case you are in desperate need of new garage floor mats, I recommend you to read this comprehensive review and find out what the market has in offer for you.