2004 to 2020 Mazda 3 Forum and Mazdaspeed 3 Forums banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
28 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was driving with my dad earlier and he told me my gas tank didn't have enough fuel in it. It's got over a quarter, but he says that it should be kept above half when it's below freezing or else the fuel line will freeze.

Normally, I fill up at a quarter, but now I'm curious. Does it need to be filled up at half right now?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,258 Posts
if you live on the frozen tundra then yes worry about it...

but then again if u live on a frozen tundra why do u own a mazda?
Depends on which part of the country you live in. If you are in the negatives then yea, your dad is right. The ethanol in fuel these days likes to attract water to it and it runs the risk of freezing.

If below freezing is 0-32 degrees then don't worry about it.

However, it should be noted that purely from a if you are caught in a snowstorm point of view, keeping the gas tank half full or better is a good idea.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
508 Posts
The perfect question for any Canadian. lol

He is right. I would always recommend filling up between 1/4 and 1/2 tank in order to keep the fuel lines from freezing. This creates condensation which adds water to the fuel tank.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
348 Posts
Never worried about it and never had a problem. It's been stupid cold here all year and last year and many other years and I've run my tank all the way down near empty and never an issue.

Back east a few people had issues but they traced them to water in the gas from a bad station...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Never worried about it and never had a problem. It's been stupid cold here all year and last year and many other years and I've run my tank all the way down near empty and never an issue.

Back east a few people had issues but they traced them to water in the gas from a bad station...
In the"good" old days, gas tanks were open to the atmosphere, and so had a pretty high rate of air moving in and out of the tank. That air carried water vapor with it, and it could condense out, which would lead to problems with water and ice in fuel lines. Modern gas tanks are sealed (and have been since 1971 in the US, though for the first decade or so the sealing is not very good, even when they were new.), and there is only minimal air movement into the tank. So there's not a lot of humidity to condense out. Add to that that most fuel is 10% ethanol these days, which can carry up to 0.5% water without phase separation (and if you buy from a reputable supplier, it will be dry when you get it.), and water is a non-issue for cars most of the time. (Exceeding the carrying capacity of ethanol bearing gasoline will cause phase separation, which is bad news indeed, and it's a real problem with small engines, boats, air planes and other vehicles with primitive fuel systems.)

I don't like driving in the winter with a low tank, because I don't care to get stuck in a ditch or in traffic jam and have to worry about running of out gas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
We just had too many cold days in a row here for me to want to think about it, but I never had a problem with freezing. For a week or better, it didn't get past 10 degrees if I remember right. I do like the added weight of a full tank, as well as never worrying about getting stuck with no gas in a snow storm. Lol
I did learn that if your car has the fuel pump in the tank itself, the fuel is what helps it stay cool, so in theory it would last longer being submerged. Not sure as to the accuracy, but it makes sense to me. So usually never go below half full if I can help it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
508 Posts
So, filling up at 1/4 is indeed fine for my Pennsylvanian winters? It never goes below 0°F here
Yes, it is fine. Don't forget, the fuel gauge is not 100% accurate as you can drive with the fuel light on and even the range showing 0 miles/km for a while.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
323 Posts
Depends on which part of the country you live in. If you are in the negatives then yea, your dad is right. The ethanol in fuel these days likes to attract water to it and it runs the risk of freezing.

If below freezing is 0-32 degrees then don't worry about it.

However, it should be noted that purely from a if you are caught in a snowstorm point of view, keeping the gas tank half full or better is a good idea.
They specifically put ethanol in fuel to prevent it from freezing in winter in Canada..
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top