Gasoline Evaporation

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Gasoline Evaporation
« on: September 12, 2012, 06:21:40 PM »
In the back of the Apocalypse World book it states that gasoline "evaporates like crazy" and that "not a drop of refined gas" would be left after 50 years. My first though was "citation needed" so I did a bit of searching and came across this interesting article which talks about how much evaporation there is from a standard car gas tank. The source for the article is this really complex but authoritative EPA report on gas storage tanks.

According to the article "for a 8400 gallon tank the total loss is 48 lbs (or about 8 gallons) a year." If this is correct, even after 50 years there would be at least 8000 gallons left in that one tank so evaporation loss really isn't an issue.

Anyone else have other research that shows differently?


Re: Gasoline Evaporation
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2012, 07:23:49 PM »
Gasoline won't evaporate completely but it will degrade and get gummy unless it is stored in very specialized conditions.

It lasts about 6 months normally or 18 months with a stabilizer.

Re: Gasoline Evaporation
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2012, 08:25:39 PM »
Gasoline won't evaporate completely but it will degrade and get gummy unless it is stored in very specialized conditions.

It lasts about 6 months normally or 18 months with a stabilizer.

Thanks for the info! Having only researched on the evaporation rate I completely missed anything about how it degrades. Ya learn something new every day.

Found a good Straight Dope article that expounds on what you mention. Relatedly, it seems that diesel has about the same storage length and biodiesel has a worse storage length according to this.

Not that Apocalypse World really needs hard science realism, but it does seem that if you wanted a more realistic world, the MC could add a easily add in a Front involving a heavily protected working refinery.

Re: Gasoline Evaporation
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2012, 07:53:50 AM »
My answer to this in my Central California setting I've been using is having a right nasty bunch of bastards in the old state prison at Folsom who have managed to assemble the expertise and the equipment for some limited biodiesel refining.  Fuel trickles out from the prison, they sit in the strongest fortress in the region, and everybody's forced to cope with them, no matter how little they're liked.  It makes for an interesting part of the landscape, I've found, especially since they have close ties to the most mobile raiders in the area...

Re: Gasoline Evaporation
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2012, 03:24:13 PM »
My boys and girls used some of their personal "expertise" in the matter. We've assumed that most all of the gas is old. Old old old. Stale as stale gets, and probably dirty. Consequently, cars break down and need to be cleaned out much more often, and even then to make the cars run a bit "smoother" they add some moonshine to the mix any time they gas up. I have cheap friends who use old gas looted from junk dealers. They tell me it burns bad but it gets the job done. Usually.