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General Tech Old gasoline disposal

Dr.T

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I’m getting ready to drain the 15 year old gas from my gas tank, there’s probably 3-4 gallons. Suggestions for safe and environmentally friendly disposal?
 

bobhustead

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You should be able to find a local oil distributor/jobber who can deal with this. They regularly dispose of questionable gas (e.g., recovered from a customer tank that had water intrusion). You local government waste department might also be able to help.
Bob
 

DavidApp

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Do you have an old lawnmower garden tractor etc that you could use it in little at a time? Depends how bad it is.

David
 
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Dr.T

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I don’t know, 15 year old gas? It smells ok, but not sure if I’d use it even in the lawn mower.
 

LarryK

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I used old,old fuel in my lawn mower for 3 months, varnish broke the rings and it started shooting oil out carb. I have about 30 gals from over the years and 10 still in the boat. I am going to call Safety-Clean as soon as I drain boat tank. Probably expensive but better than dumping. Seems every old car I purchase has old fuel.
 

CJD

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At 15 years I don’t think I would burn it in anything. Try seeing if you can find a recycle facility nearby that will take it. If you have no luck, I would just pour it out on pavement somewhere and let it evaporate...not near your house, of course. If you are really environmentally conciensious, you could burn it after pouring it out.

It reminds me of when I was a kid playing in the oil fields of eastern Texas. We figured out we could get mercury out of the oil field equipment...so being typical kids...we spent a week riding our bicycles from meter to meter draining mercury, until we had a full gallon milk jug full. (I am incriminating myself as I figure the statute of limitation is up on our petty vandalism...I hope!?!). Anyway, we were having a blast playing with all that mercury, until an older friend told us we were probably killing ourselves. We got scared and put the whole gallon hidden up in the barn.

Skip ahead 20 years to our Father selling the farm. He came across the mercury. We fessed up where it came from (I was flying in the Air Force and figured I was past a good whooping). He started by calling Exxon, the owner of the oil field, but they were way past using mercury and wanted nothing to do with it. Next he called the EPA, since he figured they would know what to do. They told him they would charge him to come get it, and then charge him an annual storage fee until eternity to keep it.

Dad was much sharper than these DC egg heads. Calling their bluff he simply responded, “thank you, but I won’t be needing your help. I’ll just go dump it in the ditch out front.” That changed the smug EPA attitude right away. Within 2 hours they showed up in full chemical gear, took the gallon away and Dad never heard back.
 

Bob Claffie

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I gave some "out dated" gas to a local garage owner who used it in his waste fuel furnace. Well diluted and mixed with drain oil and other combustible fluids
 

Tybalt

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At 15 years I don’t think I would burn it in anything. Try seeing if you can find a recycle facility nearby that will take it. If you have no luck, I would just pour it out on pavement somewhere and let it evaporate...not near your house, of course. If you are really environmentally conciensious, you could burn it after pouring it out. .......

I ran into a similar situation when we were living in Fort Worth and wanted to "do the right thing." At one time the fire department would take stuff like that and use it at their training facility, but they told me they didn't do that anymore. Many calls to various other outfits later didn't produce any better results until one guy with TCEQ (Texas environmental agency) asked how much were we talking about and I truthfully told him it was about three or four gallons. He said no one will be willing to fiddle with that small amount for disposal and that my best bet would be to pour it off onto pavement in an area where roads had been paved but no development had happened yet and just let it evaporate.

It reminds me of when I was a kid playing in the oil fields of eastern Texas. We figured out we could get mercury out of the oil field equipment...so being typical kids...we spent a week riding our bicycles from meter to meter draining mercury, until we had a full gallon milk jug full. (I am incriminating myself as I figure the statute of limitation is up on our petty vandalism...I hope!?!). Anyway, we were having a blast playing with all that mercury, until an older friend told us we were probably killing ourselves. We got scared and put the whole gallon hidden up in the barn.

Skip ahead 20 years to our Father selling the farm. He came across the mercury. We fessed up where it came from (I was flying in the Air Force and figured I was past a good whooping). He started by calling Exxon, the owner of the oil field, but they were way past using mercury and wanted nothing to do with it. Next he called the EPA, since he figured they would know what to do. They told him they would charge him to come get it, and then charge him an annual storage fee until eternity to keep it.

Dad was much sharper than these DC egg heads. Calling their bluff he simply responded, “thank you, but I won’t be needing your help. I’ll just go dump it in the ditch out front.” That changed the smug EPA attitude right away. Within 2 hours they showed up in full chemical gear, took the gallon away and Dad never heard back.

Again, somewhat similar situation when we moved our lab to a different building at Georgia Tech. The lab we inherited in the new (to us) building was much nicer but a number of unlabeled jars of chemicals had been left. I called the campus environmental folks who refused to accept these chemicals we wanted gone. I told them that was OK, I'd just sneak over to Joe Pettit's (GT president at the time) place and dump the chemicals on the lawn. Suddenly butter would not have melted in their mouths. They asked that I box them up and bring them over to their building which I did, dropping them off at ~3 in the morning at the building entrance when I took a break from running a bunch of x-ray diffraction patterns overnight.
 

CJD

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Yeah, evaporation is what I started doing with anti freeze too, which I have been unable to find any recyclers that will take it. I just pour it out in small enough amounts on the drive, so that it doesn't run in any drains. By the next day it's all gone. I got the idea from the aviation industry. In the winter it takes hundreds of gallons of ethylene glycol based fluid to de-ice one airplane. On a typical winter day DFW airport uses thousands of gallons, that is captured in drains, but is not re-usable. They drain it to a 10 acre pond where it simply sits until it evaporates off by summer time. They have some sort of pyrotechnics looking gizmos to keep the ducks away from the pond.
 
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Dr.T

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Thanks for all the input. I’ll see how much I actually have when I drain it. I might dilute it with fresh gas and try it in the lawnmower or let it evaporate on the driveway. Evaporation doesn’t seem too environmentally friendly though.
 

groupdeville

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Find a friend with either a Model T or Model A Ford - either one will run on nearly anything. Even in its deteriorated state, your gas is probably higher octane than 90 years ago. Run it through a filter, of course, to avoid clogging the fuel system with dirt or rust particles.
 

Graham H

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This is my 1926 Chev the owners manual instructs you to strain the petrol through a Chamois which back then was probably a good way to go and you are right she would run all day on that old gas. Could someone set this photo the right way up please thank you Graham
IMG_0562.jpg
 

Trevor Triumph

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The local O'Reilly's takes the oil, but coolant and gas is something else. It is frustrating and I can understand why some of this stuff ends up in the wrong place. When i began the first restoration I used to dump the little bit of spilled paint I had on the ground next to the driveway. The one night I dreamt that all the bugs and furry critters were coming after me with snarling teeth and huge pinchers and stingers. I stopped that practice.
 

CJD

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The local O'Reilly's takes the oil, but coolant and gas is something else. It is frustrating and I can understand why some of this stuff ends up in the wrong place. When i began the first restoration I used to dump the little bit of spilled paint I had on the ground next to the driveway. The one night I dreamt that all the bugs and furry critters were coming after me with snarling teeth and huge pinchers and stingers. I stopped that practice.


Could be worse. My Old Man used to pour his old engine oil down the gopher holes to control the gophers. Today it seems unthinkable, but I remember that before the '90's there was nothing to be done with old oil. Nobody took it like today, so draining your engine in the storm drain was the norm. We've come a long way...but still have far to go.
 

LarryK

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I still have the article from MotorTrend magazine on how to make an oil disposal tank by digging hole and putting in a pipe and filling the dug hole with gravel and topping the top with dirt and planting grass on top. Pour oil down pipe and cap.
 

DavidApp

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The guy I would work with some weekends before I had a real job had an oil burning heater. It would burn anything like old engine oil, diesel or kerosene. The chimney part glowed dull red. He called it a Salamanda. It had a round tank at the bottom that held the fuel ( + gallons) and a chimney about 8" dia. There was also a smaller pipe that "T" into the chimney about 1/3 the way up and connected to the fuel tank.
It made a throbbing sound when it was burning. It was not a home made thing. Maybe a British army heater.
OSHA would have a fit if they saw one now.
David
 
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