When the temperatures drop to really low levels, there are many unfavorable things that could happen to your car. The same is true when temperatures rise to really blistering levels. But in this article, we will talk about one of the purported harmful effects of winter to your automobile, and that is gasoline freezing when the tank is low.
Keep on reading if you are worried about the welfare of your vehicle. Below we will discuss some very important matters, such as gasoline freezing point, to settle once and for all if it’s really bad to have a low gas tank as glacial temperatures are said to freeze gas and ultimately cause damage to your car.
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So, does gasoline freeze in your car when the tank is low? A quick answer to that is yes, gasoline freezes when the temperatures are really low. What’s more, it freezes whether the tank is low or full. According to scientists, the freezing point of gasoline is -100 degrees F or -37.8 degrees C.
It’s unlikely for the temperatures in your area to go as low as that, unless you are residing in Antarctica − to date, the lowest temperature recorded there is -128.6 degrees F or -89.2 degrees C. At a temperature that low, gasoline in the tank will surely freeze. It doesn’t matter if there is little or lots of gasoline in your car’s gas tank.
Freezing gasoline is not that easy because it is made up of different components, many of which tend to retain their state at low temperatures. However, it’s important to note that different fuel products have different freezing points.
Diesel fuel, for instance, has a lower freeze point than most others, which means that it is likely to become frozen first as soon as it comes into contact with the icy elements. As a matter of fact, there is really no need to lower temperature below zero for diesel to start solidifying — it can start to freeze at 32 degrees F or 0 degrees C, which is the freezing point of water. It’s for this reason exactly why there are diesel blends for winter available.
Many believe that the myth that gasoline freezes in your car when the tank is low and causes damage to your vehicle is being perpetuated by the petroleum industry to make sure that we constantly head to pump stations.
What’s not a myth, however, is that a low gas tank may cause some problems in the dead of winter. So yes, it’s a good idea to keep your gas tank full or nearly full, but not because of the notion that gasoline in it will freeze and wreak havoc to the engine’s health. Here are some of the reasons why a low gas tank and cold months do not mix:
· The alcohol content of gasoline has the ability to absorb moisture. If there is not enough alcohol around in the gas tank because there is not enough gasoline present, moisture can collect inside the tank. This can damage the mechanism of the engine, thus leaving your car unable to take you from point A to point B.
· While it’s true that it will take for the temperatures to drop really low before gasoline freeze in winter, it may break down into its various components. The problem with this is that large wax crystals may form, and this is the one to blame for what’s called gelled fuel. You don’t want this to happen as it can clog fuel lines.
· No matter if it’s winter or otherwise, it’s not a good idea to constantly keep the gasoline’s level in the tank to be less than half. In the automotive world, it’s a fact that this can considerably shorten the lifespan of the fuel pump. Needless to say, it’s a wonderful idea to make sure that your gas tank is always full or nearly full.
Refrain from panicking after reading the above scenarios. This is especially true if you purchased your car not too long ago. Over the last couple of decades, ethanol-based gasoline and fuel injection systems have undergone several improvements, and this helps to extensively lower your risk of encountering issues at a freezing temperature.
There is no need to learn about matters such as gasoline freezing point or the freeze points of other fuel products. If you want to keep your gas tank and ultimately your automobile out of harm’s way when the temperatures drop, just keep in mind the following simple tips and you’re golden:
· Ensure that the gas line is free of leaks or cracks to keep moisture from getting in.
· Stay away from alcohol-blended fuel especially if you reside where temperatures can get really low.
· Keep your gas tank more than half full, although keeping it completely full is better.
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