Fuel Storage and Emerging Threats
Please note: The following article was written a little while ago by Ralph Lewis, a principle at Power Research Inc. We have personally used their products for fuel storage with excellent success for over 15 years (in one case successfully storing gasoline for 6 years). We thought you might be interested in some details about fuel storage he reveals here, reprinted with permission of Power Research Inc. While we have carried PRI's products at events, we do not currently sell them online. We just want to share this information with you.
I have deeply investigated the world economy and our present financial system in an effort to protect my company (Power Research Inc.), my family, and my employees. There is absolutely no question that the present system is unsustainable, and the ramifications of an economic collapse will be severe. I have made my own preparations and have encouraged my employees, little by little, to do the same...
Long Term Fuel Storage...
Addressing the issue of long-term fuel storage. Interestingly, more than half of emergency generator failures during a crisis can be directly attributable to degraded fuel. This was found to be the case post-Katrina. The product STA-BIL that you reference in your writing, will, in fact, stabilize gasoline and diesel fuel. But bear in mind this is a “consumer” type product – designed with strength only sufficient to extend fuel life 6-to-12 months. The active ingredient in this product is actually in a very small concentration.
We manufacturer PRI-D and PRI-G for diesel and gasoline respectively. While we largely sell these products to the industrial market, we also have made them available to recreational boaters and RV enthusiasts through several hundred outlets nationwide. The chemistry we offer in our consumer package is in the same strength we provide to industrial users – users that include nuclear power facilities, and countless thousands of entities that store fuel for emergency power generation.
Great For Preppers!
These products have also found a popular following among those of us in the “prepper” community. On average, one dosage will keep fuel fresh for about five years – sometimes much longer. We have had some fuels in storage as long as 12 years – and they are still refinery fresh. As a side note – even kerosene for lamp oil can deteriorate, so it is also of critical importance to treat these fuels as well.
Bear in mind that fuel stability is dependent on a number of factors. First is refinery processing – which can change day to day. The stability of a fuel produced one day can change the next owing to minor adjustments in feedstock and refinery processes. Second is storage conditions – bearing in mind that heat and exposure to oxygen are key factors. This is where most amateurs go wrong.
Personally – I believe long-term reliance on a generator for power is untenable, as one would have to have a major fuel supply on hand. That said, use of fuel for power equipment like a chain saw or roto-tiller or well pump can make post-collapse life a bit easier. As for personal transportation – I favor an electric bike, which can be re-charged with a solar generator.
One of the things I find most interesting is that most of us in the USA are just one or two generations away when most of the American population was self-sufficient. I come from a Southern Illinois farm family. We grew our own food, made our own soap, and even grandma made all of our clothes on a non-electric Singer sewing machine. I had one farmer cousin that had no electricity at his place, and relied on kerosene lamps at night. We also learned to hunt and fish at an early age. My dad bought me my first .22 rifle when I was 11 and taught me to shoot. Many times he would send me down the road and out into the fields to dispatch varmints.
Can you imagine an 11 year old today simply walking down the local highway with a rifle in hand? We also learned to work on our own cars – replacing transmissions – rebuilding engines – mostly from junkyard parts. How the world has changed. Fortunately, even though I'm now in my 60s I am in great physical shape. I can thank the Lord for that. I don’t drink, don’t smoke, get plenty of exercise in trying to keep this temple clean. Most importantly, I realize that there is a God and He is not me. I put myself humbly before Him every day in thanks that he sent his Son for our salvation...The best preparation for any of us is to be spiritually fit...
Vice President, Technical
Power Research Inc.
For a more in-depth look at fuel storage, check out a recent article Ralph authored on this topic by Clicking Here.