Condensation Conundrum

Clyde Collins of Seneca Falls, New York, asks:"I’ve moved up from a Catalina 22 to a Bayfield 29 with a 20-gallon diesel fuel tank. I sail on the Finger Lakes of New York and only use about 5 gallons of fuel a summer. My understanding has always been that I should store the boat over winter with a full tank to minimize condensation. But that means I have 15 gallons that
Author:
Updated:
Original:
CondensationPhoto1

Clyde Collins of Seneca Falls, New York, asks:

"I’ve moved up from a Catalina 22 to a Bayfield 29 with a 20-gallon diesel fuel tank. I sail on the Finger Lakes of New York and only use about 5 gallons of fuel a summer. My understanding has always been that I should store the boat over winter with a full tank to minimize condensation. But that means I have 15 gallons that won’t get used next summer, which means keeping old fuel in my tank year after year.

Although I do put in additives, I’m concerned about the quality of my leftover fuel. What do you think about putting a small amount of a water-retention additive into the fuel that remains in the fall and then pumping it all out in the spring before I add five gallons of clean fresh fuel?"

Nigel Calder replies:

Although I’ve always advocated topping off a fuel tank to avoid condensation, recently I’ve seen comments from a yard in New England that deals with this issue on a regular basis and they suggest that condensation in a half-empty tank is negligible—at least in New England. So if you leave the tank half empty, things probably will be all right. However, if you can insert a line down to the bottom of the tank, I would suggest pumping out a fuel sample at the start of next season to remove any water that may have collected and to suck out any accumulated sediment. If you can’t do this, keep a close eye on the transparent bowl on your primary fuel meter when you first crank up the engine next year.

Related

Screen Shot 2020-09-18 at 1.18.36 PM

Harken Changes Hands, Stays in the Family

. In a video posted yesterday, Peter Harken cheerfully announced that his company, Harken Inc., the trusted hardware brand bearing his last name, which was formerly owned by founders and their families has changed hands. The owners have sold their shares to employees—"passing ...read more

OceanRace

Newport Hosts The Ocean Race Summit on Ocean Health

Hundreds of participants from around the world tuned in yesterday for the latest installment of The Ocean Race's (formerly the Volvo Ocean Race) Summit Series, which aims to bring the best of ocean racing—leadership, resilience, tenacity, collaboration—to solving the ocean’s ...read more

sp360_fs5-024crop (1)

Highfield SPORT 360

The new 2021 SPORT 360 is the next generation of Highfield boats. Highfield is celebrating its 10th year in the market this year and in this relatively short period of time has now delivered over 30,000 boats to happy customers in 38 countries. Highfield is already the ...read more

sp560_drone-028crop

Highfield SPORT 560

The new 2021 SPORT 560 is the next generation of Highfield boats. Highfield is celebrating its 10th year in the market this year and in this relatively short period of time has now delivered over 30,000 boats to happy customers in 38 countries. Highfield is already the ...read more

Three Props 1772x1181

EWOL Propellers

Ewol propellers make maneuvering easier, increase sailing speed and increase cruising speed under power. EWOL adjustable pitch propellers are made of stainless steel alloys that represent the highest technology in terms of marine corrosion and galvanic corrosion resistance, ...read more

leadership-forum-LGBTQ-email-graphic

Tonight: US Sailing’s LGBTQ+ Panel

Tune in to the latest installment in US Sailing’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Series tonight at 7pm EDT. This week Kimball Livingston will moderate a panel of LGBTQ+ sailors who will share their personal and professional experiences as well as strategies for improving ...read more

200910

Find Your People (Virtually)

Social media offers a world of new opportunities for sailors. I regularly see folks meet their next delivery crew in the comments section of Facebook or decide on their next charter based on breathtaking photos posted by a stranger. It’s a great way to connect with other sailors ...read more