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Winter storage of small engines

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J MALLOY
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 24 CENTRAL IOWA
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2003-09-12          63722


This has probably been discussed in the past before I became a member. I have heard that both ways are the best but would be interested in hearing what you guys have to say. Storage of small engines, walk behind mowers, tillers, etc; for the winter months. Fill with gas and use stabilizer or run the tank dry ??

Thanks,

J. Malloy

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Winter storage of small engines

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2003-09-12          63725


I don't know if there is a BEST way. I've done it both ways and haven't noticed problems either way. What I usually do now is run it dry if it's almost empty, otherwise I fill it up with fresh stabilized fuel before putting it away for the season. ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7141 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2003-09-12          63727


We use many small engines in my business, and the maintenace guy stores them all the same way. Not to say that it's any better than any other way.

Drain fuel tank completely, next, drain all lines, filters, etc., and run carb dry. Remove spark plug and spray storage oil into cylinders, and replace plug finger tight, leaving wire off. Put a canvas cover (any breathable fabric will do) over engine. Store in a cool dry location till needed.

Now the logic behind it all.

By completely draining the fuel system there is a perfect opportunity in the spring when everything is well dried out to remove the foreign matter and debris that inevitably ends up in the tank and lines. It is also the perfect time to replace the fuel filter without getting covered in gas to the elbow. A new (or at least cleaned up) plug. Inspect the wiring, etc., some fresh gas and you're off & running.

Best of luck. ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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Chief
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4284 Southwest MiddleTennessee
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2003-09-12          63732


I have done it both ways and learned my lesson. I put fresh gas which has been maximum treated with Stabil in the tank and run it long enough to ensure the treated fuel is in the carb. A good shot of engine fogging oil in the spark plug hole & pull it over by hand a few times. Then change the oil and filter if applicable. If you run the tank & carb dry, there is always a small amount of fuel that does not get pulled out of the carb. This fuel will dry and leave gum deposits which wreak havoc with the carb. and play hell with you in the Spring when you need it. I have engines I have been doing this with for over 10 years and they run like a champ and start right up every year. The only exception to this is my emergency generator which I ran dry of fuel and then removed the air filter and ran it for a few minutes off of WD-40 to lubricate/preserve the carb. and I also gave a few shots of oil in the spark plug hole and pulled it over by hand to spread it out. Always change the oil and filter when you put it into storage to minimize deposits and potential damage from moisture/acids in the oil. Finally a thin spray coating of "Hommer's Duck Butter" to preserve the outside of the engine and finish. ;-) ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6877 Waterville New York
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2003-09-13          63749


You guys are GOOD!!! from my side of it the info here thats been given is tough to beat. I will add this, the low grade fuel only has about a 90 day shelf life. The cooler temps of the winter lenghtens the seperation and break down on it compared to summer. Any way you look at it to drain or stabalize is a neccesity. In some of the older more complex carbs I was informed that the drying out might hinder the gasket life on them but I have never seen any type of it myself. ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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J MALLOY
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 24 CENTRAL IOWA
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster

2003-09-15          63881


Thanks guys. Appreciate the input. Really enjoy this board, always lots of good info on it.

Thanks again to all.

J. Malloy

....

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Winter storage of small engines

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DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2644 NorthWest NJ
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2012-11-21          185523


Is everyone of the same mindset in 2012? ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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hardwood
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3583 iowa
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster

2012-11-22          185526


Dennis;

It seems that my "mind" just "sets" around doing nothing anymore.

Happpy Thanksgiving!!

Frank. ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
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2012-11-23          185531


Quote:
Originally Posted by hardwood | view 185526
Dennis;It seems that my "mind" just "sets" around doing nothing anymore.Happpy Thanksgiving!!Frank.


Sometimes that is the best thing to do..never pulled a tractor out of a bogg I just thought about...lol ....

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Winter storage of small engines

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taogden
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 81 United States
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2012-11-24          185536


Quote:
Originally Posted by DennisCTB | view 185523
Is everyone of the same mindset in 2012?


Pretty much, I even store my big engines this way, use Seafoam in the tank, on updraft carbs, shut off the fuel and run them dry, I don't do anything special for the cylinders, but Colorado has such a dry climate it is not much of an issue. Diesels I fill the tanks and treat, gas, fill the tank and treat. The only thing I do different is checking for mice damage in the spring. Weed whackers, chainsaws, hand push lawn mowers all get drained ....

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