STA-BIL Boat Winterization

5 Best Fuel Stabilizers to Winterize a Boat

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Whether you plan to store your boat long term, or simply winterize it, it’s essential to treat the fuel with the best stabilizer to keep it fresh for the spring or next time you plan to run it. If not treated while sitting for an extended period of time, the starting process of your watercraft may not be as smooth as you would like and may even require removing old gas or cleaning components.

Not only will this apply if you are looking to winterize a boat, but can also be applied if you are looking winterize a jet ski, or winterize an outboard.

Why It’s Important to Stabilize Your Boat’s Fuel

We’ve listed some information below on what can happen if the fuel in your watercraft is not properly taken care of before storage.

Loss of Combustion Characteristics

If the fuel in your boat sits for too long, it will start to break down along with a few other not so desirable things as well. After sitting for an extended period of time, gasoline will lose its combustibility. If left for too long, it may cause your engine to run rough or even fail to start.

Gumming Up and Blockages

On top of losing its combustion characteristics, gas will also gum up inside of your system. Small ports and jets are especially susceptible to being clogged by gas that is not treated and sits for a long time.

Oxidation and or Rust

Fuel stabilizers help prevent oxidation or rust that may occur due to extended periods of exposure to metals, air, and liquid. If there’s any kind of small air leaks or exposure to the fuel system, moisture can build after some time. The more moisture that builds, the more susceptible the system is of having oxidation or rust form on components within. In addition to having a fuel stabilizer, it’s also recommended to top your gas tank off and make sure your gas cap is tight and sealing properly.

Stabilizer Purchasing Guide

We’ve put together some information below to help make an informed decision when purchasing a fuel stabilizer for a boat when storing.

STA-BIL Storage

Best fuel additive for storage

STA-BIL has been one of Americas #1 fuel stabilizers for a long time and is one of the most popular brands when it comes to stabilizing fuel. Our friends down at Gold Eagle (The owner of STA-BIL) have produced a line of STA-BIL additive designed specifically with storage needs in mind. This fuel additive will work to keep gasoline fresh in a boat you are looking to put away for weeks, months, even years!

Whether you are looking to store your boat or any other combustion engine, STA-BIL Storage has what your machine needs to sit idle safely for an extended period of time. Some of the great attributes that help to keep fuel stable for long periods of time can be found below.

  • Long term storage ability keeps fuel fresh for up to 24 Months
  • No need to drain and waste fuel when storing your boat
  • Prevents gasoline from gumming up and varnishing, making starting much easier
  • Works for all types of gasoline, even ethanol loaded gas
  • Works for 2-strokes and 4-strokes, universal solution for just about any gas powered engine

Dosage Guide For STA-BIL Storage

Sta-bil Storage comes in 6 different sizes to treat just about any fuel storage need that you have. Starting from the teeny-tiny 4oz blister pack, the sizes range all the way up to a gigantic 1 gallon bottle.

Looking at the normal uses for Sta-bil you will find that the 16oz and 32oz sizes are the most popular, as they are a good balance between individual doses and shelf life. The amounts used to treat gasoline are:

  • 1/2 ounce of STA-BIL to treat 1 gallon of gasoline
  • 2oz of STA-BIL treats 5 gallons of gas
  • 6oz of STA-BIL to treat 15 gallons
  • 10oz of STA-BIL can treat 25 gallons
  • 16oz is the amount to treat 40 gallons
  • 32oz of STA-BIL can treat 80 gallons
  • 1 gallon (128oz) of STA-BIL can treat 320 gallons of gas

As you can see by the usage chart, Sta-bil is a highly concentrated fuel additive that will go a long way in treating all your fuel system needs.

Keeping it’s concentration and effectiveness in mind, there is a downside to storing Sta-bil (and pretty much any other fuel stabilizer) and that is that they use a sacrificial molecule to actually suspend the oxidation process of gasoline. Oxidation will actually attack this molecule before it has a chance to varnish your gasoline.

Because of this, the shelf life of opened STA-BIL that has had the seal broken (but cap replaced and tight) and been exposed to air is about 2 years. Our recommendation is to purchase only the amount that you will need at a time. The good thing is that it can be used in any gasoline equipment that sits for extended periods of time, so a bottle of STA-BIL can be used up pretty quick!

Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment

How to winterize a boat

Star Brite has created another very effective and popular product in their Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment. If you’re going to be storing your boat or fuel for an extended period of time, there’s no need to sweat. With their use of enzyme technology, they have built a treatment that is designed to give extra protection to your engine from the harmful effects ethanol in modern gas can create.

As with the other popular products, Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment has many talents and is built to do more than simply protect against ethanol in gasoline. A list of the features can be found below.

  • Stabilizes fuel to prepare for storage for up to 2 years
  • Restores aged gas to a useable state
  • Protection against ethanol water separation in gasoline
  • Enhances combustion in gas for better performance and less deposits
  • Cleans deposits from engine and fuel system

Dosage Guide For Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment

Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment comes in a variety of different sizes for you to choose from. One of the things we like about this product is the larger selection. With so many different styles of boats, this usually means various gas tank capacities as well. This is where the additional sizes and a lower concentration may be the right choice for you. Below is a list of the various sizes as well as the number of gallons each bottle can treat.

  • 8 ounces treats 48 gallons
  • 16 ounces treats 96 gallons
  • 32 ounces treats 192 gallons

This treatment is capable of treating 6 gallons of gas per 1 ounce of additive. Star Brite had a few tricks up their sleeve as well when they developed their clever bottle. Not only is the bottle clear so you can see the liquid level, it also has a scale on the side so you can measure the amount of liquid you are using without having to pour it in another measuring device! This is convenient if you are using the additive on the go as well as simply making it more efficient at home.

Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment will let you sleep better at night knowing your boats fuel will be covered for an extended period of time. It has an impressive ability to stabilize gas for up to two years! While we have primarily covered the standard version of this fuel treatment, Start Brite also has a line of additional additives in a concentrated and super concentrated formula that may also fit your needs.

With it’s dependability and practical lineup, its easy to see why so many people choose to protect their machines with Star Brite’s products. Be sure to check their lineup out and get your gas ready for storage today!

3. PRI-G

Another great product that will help keep your boats gas in original condition is the PRI-G gasoline additive. This treatment will ensure your machines fuel system is cleaned up and stays free of any aged gasoline that could create a blocked passage. With it’s higher concentration, PRI-G can treat a higher number of gallons of gas per ounce compared to its competitors.

PRI-G has an impressive resume. Here we list some of its notable features and ways your watercrafts fuel system will stay in tip top shape, on top of keeping fresh during prolonged periods of storage:

  • Stabilizes fuel to prepare for storage
  • Revitalizes aged fuel to a reusable condition
  • Works with 2 and 4-stroke engines
  • Removes and protects against harmful deposits
  • Cleans and clears fuel lines and injectors
  • Reduces risk of water separation in modern ethanol gasoline

Dosage Guide For PRI-G

PRI-G comes in a few different sizes depending on your specific needs, use, or the size of your fleet. While the most common sizes are 16 oz. and 32 oz. bottles, PRI-G can be purchased in a container as large as 128 oz. (1 gallon). The amount of fuel each bottle can treat is as follows:

  • 16 ounces treats 256 gallons of gasoline
  • 32 ounces treats 512 gallons of gasoline
  • 128 ounces treats 2048 gallons of gasoline

PRI-G treatment is capable of treating 16 gallons of gasoline per ounce of additive. With it’s handy measuring device built into the bottle, there’s no need to mess around with additional measuring equipment. Measurements in increments of 1/2 ounce, or 8 gallons of gasoline, can be easily made during use.

With it’s long shelf life, there’s no fear of having a bad product the next time you go to use it. The shelf life of PRI-G is indefinite while sealed, and up to 3 years after opening! While it’s said to have the capability of keeping gasoline fresh for many years, it is recommended to refresh your fuel after a year of sitting if you will be storing it for longer.

With it’s versatility and ability to retain and restore gasoline quality, there’s no question why PRI-G is a favorite from hobbyists to professionals. If you want something tough that you can rely on, PRI-G is the product for you!

4. Lucas Fuel Stabilizer

Lucas Diesel Additive

Lucas Upper Cylinder Lubricant is specially made with a blend of super slick oils and additives with a detergent action. Not only will it keep your gasoline in tip top shape, it will also service your boat, jet ski, or outboards engine and components to keep them in good condition for years to come. With the abuse it takes both from running for hours at a time, and sitting for weeks, months, or even years at a time, Lucas Upper Cylinder Lubricant is a good choice to keep the insides of your machines engine fresh.

Since Lucas Upper Cylinder Lubricant has a few additional features to offer, we summarized it in the list below:

  • Lubricates engine internals such as rings, cylinder walls, and valves
  • Lubricates and cleans fuel pumps and injectors
  • Neutralizes low sulfur diesel fuel
  • More efficient fuel burn for increased power and less fuel consumption

Dosage Guide For Lucas Fuel Stabilizer

Depending on the size, quantity, or need for storing a watercraft, Lucas Fuel Treatment also comes in a few different size options to make your life easier. If you’re simply a hobbyist or don’t require attention to a large amount of fuel, this treatment comes in containers as small as 5.25 ounces to treat a modest 25 gallons of gas. For the more serious enthusiast, Lucas makes containers up to 128 ounces (that’s an entire gallon!) to treat up to 400 gallons of gas.

Below you can find the bottle sizes along with the number of gallons of gasoline they treat:

  • 5.25 ounces treats 25 gallons
  • 32 ounces treats 100 gallons
  • 128 ounces treats 400 gallons

Lucas Fuel Treatment is capable of treating slightly over 3 gallons of gasoline per ounce of treatment. With the design of their bottle, adding Lucas Fuel Treatment to your machines system is quick and clean. The smallest bottle contains a slim neck to allow for the bottle to be inserted into the opening of the fuel system to eliminate spills. The 32 ounce bottle is built with a cone shaped exit to easily aim and squirt the treatment with no spills, and also features a measuring gauge on the side of the bottle so you know exactly how much you are using.

If you’re looking for more than just storage, it’s recommended to add Lucas Fuel Treatment to your machine each time you fill it with gas. This will help condition its engine as you run it. Having this additive in the gas means giving your fuel injectors, cylinder walls, valves, fuel pump, and combustion chamber a good cleaning and prevention of harmful buildup. On top of that, an added benefit is the lubrication traits that Lucas Fuel Treatment has that will keep the internal components moving freely with minimal friction that could be harmful to your machines engine.

It’s no wonder so many people choose Lucas Fuel Treatment with all of it’s unique features that stick out from the competition!

5. Seafoam Motor Treatment

Boat gasoline additive

Sea Foam Motor Treatment has been on the market since 1942 and was created years before privately by fishermen who struggled with bad fuel in their boat outboards. This special additive is one of the best selling treatments and stabilizers in North America. It has always had the aim to keep fuels fresh, as well as keeping engines cleaned and lubricated inside. While we are primarily focused on stabilizing fuel in this article, it is good to know that you can use your Sea Foam for more than just stabilization. Not only can it be used in fuel systems, but can also be used in your engines oil as well! Below is a list of uses for Sea Foam Motor Treatment:

  • Stabilizes gas up to 2 years
  • Cleans fuel injectors and carburetors
  • Cleans deposits in valves and chambers
  • Lubricates upper cylinders and walls
  • Works with any gas blend including ethanol blend
  • Multifunctional and can be used with oil as well if desired

Dosage Guide For Seafoam Motor Treatment

Seafoam has always had a very traditional size bottle for the standard consumer. Most of the time, you will be able to find it in a 16 ounce bottle. It does, however, also come in a 128 ounce (1 gallon!) can for those who need a little more around the shop for additional fuel and or machines to treat. The dosage amount of Seafoam varies depending on whether you are looking to clean your watercrafts fuel system, or simply store it. For simply storing and stabilizing gasoline, Seafoam Motor Treatment will treat 1 gallon of gas per 1 ounce of stabilizer.

Below you can find the bottle sizes along with the number of gallons of fuel they treat for storage purposes:

  • 16 ounces treats 16 gallons of gasoline
  • 128 ounces treats 128 gallons of gasoline

For the sake of getting to know the full potential of the product, we have also listed the bottle sizes and number of gallons of fuel they treat for engine cleaning purposes:

  • 16 ounces treats 8 gallons of gasoline
  • 128 ounces treats 64 gallons of gasoline

Sea Foam Motor Treatment has the ability to keep your gasoline fresh for up to 2 years! That means there’s no worries about having to remove fuel from machines, or waste any that has sat for an extended period of time. With its many abilities and dependability for a long time in the industry, Seafoam Motor Treatment is a big hit for those looking for an additive with multiple capabilities!

Final Thoughts

There are a few different options for keeping the gas in your boat fresh during storage. For the most part, many of these products work similarly and will keep gas in good condition and will often offer more such as cleaning and lubricating. We hope you’ve been able to narrow your search down with the products we’ve covered in our guide and are able to make an informed decision on what will work best for your application. Happy boating!

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