Gasoline for the Portable Generator

  • Tips for Safe Storage, Use and Disposal

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  • Fuel and proper maintenance are important to ensure your portable generator is ready to help you and your family.

    Follow all manufacturer’s instructions relating to proper maintenance and safety while using the generator.

    Gasoline can be dangerous if it’s not handled or stored properly. Gasoline should only be used for its intended purpose – as a motor fuel – and stored only when absolutely necessary. It should not be used as a solvent, cleaner, barbecue starter or for any other non-engine use.

  • Take the following precautions:
    • Contact the Westbrook Fire Marshal’s Office at (860) 399-3040 for standards and regulations on gasoline storage in Westbrook. For example, fire codes and regulations restrict the amount of gasoline an individual homeowner can store (usually no more than 25 gallons), in approved containers of less than five gallons capacity each.

    • Gasoline must be stored in an approved container found at Walmart, local parts stores etc. Never use soda or milk containers. Keep gasoline containers tightly closed and handle them gently to avoid spills.

    Use a product like Stabil or Star Tron to add to the gas for long term storage. It will keep the gas fresh for 12 months. These products can be found at Walmart, part stores and the web. When your gas storage approaches 10 months, pour it into your car’s gas tank and refill your container with fresh gas; adding the product at time of refueling.

    • Gasoline is a flammable liquid and should be stored at room temperature, away from potential heat sources such as the sun. Never store gasoline inside your residence near a hot water heater, space heater or a furnace, and a least 50 feet away from ignition sources, such as pilot lights. Gasoline vapors are heavier than air and can travel along the floor to ignition sources. Do not smoke where gasoline is handled or stored.

    • Put gasoline in the generator only when the engine and attachments are cool, including when its time to refuel.

    • Store gasoline in a building separate from the house or place of occupancy, such as a shed or garage. Always keep gasoline out of reach from children.

    • For better ventilation, it is best to handle gasoline outdoors.

    • Do not mix even a small amount of gasoline with kerosene or diesel.

    • Minor spills should be absorbed with sawdust, paper or rags. Larger spills may be contained and collected. Check with your local government or hazardous waste disposal center to determine the proper avenues for disposing of spilled gasoline. Place recovered gasoline and cleanup materials in approved, labeled containers for proper disposal. Never dispose of spilled gasoline or cleaning materials on the ground or into your garbage, drains, toilets or sewers. If you do, it might cause a fire, or seep into streams, bays, lakes or your groundwater.

  • Old Gas – Disposal

  • NEVER dispose of gasoline by pouring it onto the ground or into a sewer, street drain, stream or other water body, or putting it into the trash. These actions are environmentally harmful and may result in a fire, explosion, or soil, surface or groundwater contamination. Fines and criminal penalties may be associated with improper disposal.

    Contact the Westbrook Fire Marshal’s Office for more information.