I'm not a fan of the E10 ethanol-blended fuel (10% ethanol/90% gasoline) that is extremely common here in the US. I'm no expert, but I've heard and read that it is often damaging when used in either small engines or passenger vehicles. Thus I try to limit my use of it when practical. I'm aware of two workarounds:

The first option is quite difficult, and expensive – in my area, E0 costs almost twice as much as E10, and it's only sold at a few out-of-the-way stations.

Thus, the second option is attractive: less expensive, and easy – I can add it to all the E10 I buy, both what I put in my car and what goes in the riding lawn mower and other small engines.

However, I wonder – what effect does the Stabil ethanol treatment actually have? Has any research been done to demonstrate that it truly works and reduces long-term issues in both passenger vehicle fuel systems and in small engines?

And if it does indeed "do something," does it fully counteract the effects of ethanol in E10, making purchase of E0 completely unnecessary?

  • "This additive releases a corrosion preventing vapor that coats ALL metal parts of the fuel system, including the fuel tank, fuel sending unit, valves, carburetor/fuel injectors and intake manifold" youtube.com/watch?v=2S-IdT5Uxq0
    – Moab
    Aug 2, 2016 at 20:27
  • @Moab Thanks; the most helpful part of that video was their comparison images. I'm really hoping for some kind of independent verification of their marketing claims. Aug 2, 2016 at 20:50
  • Its hard to get paid for doing independent verification, this is why it never gets done, only time it gets done is when the FTC gets involved for fraud. Some companies pay for so called independent verification but is not reliable because they pay for their own verification. Biggest side effect of ethanol is fuel system corrosion, which they claim to prevent this.
    – Moab
    Aug 2, 2016 at 21:21

2 Answers 2


I cannot answer as to the "effects" if you're talking about preventing corrosion due to the ethanol, but I can answer as to a performance aspect. Ethanol-blended fuel exacerbates vapor lock and fuel percolation in my '57 Chevrolet, which is carbureted. Adding the Stabil treatment does nothing to change that, so I seek out ethanol-free gas, even though it costs significantly more.


As I understand it, Stabil simply coats the fuel system to protect against ethanol damage over time. Ethanol free gas eliminates the most damaging element of fuel and is thus the ideal solution. I put ethanol free fuel in all of my small engines that sit for any prolonged period of time and have had zero problems.

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