How To Protect Your Boat Fuel System During Covid Shutdown

Whether it’s by government decree or a desire to pitch in and help end this crazy time in our nation’s history, people across the country are staying indoors and practicing social distancing.

boat winterize
Photo Credit: Kevin McMenamin

This has had some strange side effects for boaters and fishermen.   In colder areas of the country, people who would now start daydreaming about getting their “winterized” boats ready for springtime action are putting those plans on at least temporary hold.  Even stranger, those of us in warmer, year-round-boating areas of the country like California, Texas, the Gulf Coast states and Florida are faced with not using their boats for an indeterminate amount of time that some say could stretch for months.

Taking care of your boat’s fuel system during extended downtime such as this is important to the health and welfare of your fishing rig.

Even more importantly, it will help ensure trouble-free boating when we finally get to venture outside in search of fishing action.  After all, the fish are going to be bored and hungry, and you don’t want to disappoint them by being stuck at the dock, do you?

The first and most important step is to use a high-performance fuel additive to stabilize your fuel and protect the entire fuel system from the build-up of gum, varnish, and corrosion over time.  Techron Marine Fuel System Treatment was scientifically formulated by the fuel experts at Chevron to provide the highest level of protection during extended storage, while also fighting the corrosive effects of the harsh marine environment.

Techron fuel treatment

Ethanol Issues

More than 98% of gasoline sold in the United States contains ethanol, which attracts water into your boat’s fuel system.  During offseason storage — or any period of infrequent operation — this water accelerates fuel oxidation, the formation of gum and varnish and can lead to corrosion in the fuel system.  It left too long, this corrosion, varnish and gum can cause permanent damage to your boat’s fuel system.

Some boaters attempt to prevent this by draining their fuel system in preparation for storage.    This is often impractical, and it also wastes money and gasoline.  Most importantly, it can actually create problems.  Draining the tank exposes the metal components inside to condensation, which may accelerate fuel system corrosion.  It can also cause internal components in your fuel system to dry and crack over time, leading to potential hazards and leaks.

Techron corrosion test

In addition, there will usually be some fuel left in the tank after draining, and it will be subject to oxidation.  This can create gum and varnish that can restrict fuel injectors, gum up carburetors, and even clog the system badly enough to cause a fuel pump failure.

Stabilize A Full Tank

Instead of draining the tank, add Techron Marine to a nearly empty fuel tank and then fill it up nearly to the top with quality gasoline.  Leave just a little room for expansion.  Then, run the engine for a few minutes to allow the treatment to circulate throughout the system.    It only takes one ounce of Techron Marine to treat 10 gallons of fuel, so follow instructions and make sure you are dosing the fuel properly.

Techron fuel treatment

Techron Marine has been scientifically engineered to keep fuel fresh for up to 24 months.    Head-to-head laboratory tests have shown that Techron is also a top performer when it comes to engine and fuel system cleaning and corrosion protection in the harshest environments — especially in saltwater.  Because of this, Techron Marine is an ideal additive for use with every fill up, not just during storage.  Used regularly, Techron Marine can help keep a boat’s fuel system and engine running clean, strong and at peak efficiency.     It works in all types of gasoline-powered boats including two-stroke, four-stroke, carbureted, port- or electronic fuel-injected and direct injected engines.

This versatility to stabilize fuel for extended storage and also protect boat fuel systems all season long contributed to Techron Marine winning a 2019 Top Product Award from leading trade journal Boating Industry magazine.

boat tips

Give your boat’s fuel system a little TLC during this “break from boating.” It will help you pass a little time and you’ll be ready for action when you hit the water again.  Techron Marine is available at all West Marine stores nationwide and can be ordered online through West Marine’s website, and other online retail channels.

Techron fuel additive

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