How To Avoid Fuel-Related Problems in Marine Engines – Quicksilver Q Crew
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How To Avoid Fuel-Related Problems in Marine Engines

Marine engine technicians report that untreated fuel is the most common cause of hard-starting and other engine performance issues in today’s boats. Modern gasoline is refined to promote low emissions in automobiles, and is often mixed with ethanol. This combination can cause gasoline to begin to break down – or get “stale” – in as little as two weeks.

This is not a problem for cars and trucks, because we usually drive enough to consume a tank of gas before it can begin to go bad. But a boat may often sit for weeks between outings, and in that time some of the fuel components begin to oxidize and form a gum-like substance. The substance settles in fuel lines and tanks, carburetors, and injectors. When you try to burn this fuel, deposits can form in the combustion chamber.

Over time, these deposits build up and reduce your engine’s performance. Older outboard and inboard engines with a carburetor are especially prone to problems caused by deposits, which can clog very small jets and passages in the carburetor.

The complete Quicksilver® Fuel Care System is designed to be the boat owner’s first line of defense against fuel-related problems. Quicksilver fuel additives are specially formulated to keep fuel optimized, protect the fuel system, remove harmful deposits and help any marine engine run its best. Each additive is highly concentrated for convenient use in large-capacity boat fuel tanks.

Quickare® Fuel Treatment

This is a complete fuel treatment designed to be used at every fill-up. Quickare maximizes engine performance with all grades of gasoline.

  • Helps control corrosion, gum and varnish buildup.
  • Helps control moisture and corrosion problems associated with non-ethanol fuel.
  • Cleans up existing varnish and gum deposits from fuel lines, tanks, carburetors and injectors, intake valves, and spark plugs.

Quickleen® Engine & Fuel System Cleaner

Use this deep-cleaning fuel treatment periodically during the boating season. It’s particularly effective for cleaning out older two-stroke gasoline engines. Quickleen does not contain fuel stabilizers.

  • Aggressive cleaners work to quickly and thoroughly remove carbon deposits from carburetors and injectors, intake valves, spark plugs, piston crowns and cylinder heads.
  • Prevents engine knocking and piston seize-up.
  • Extends spark plug life.

Quickstor® Fuel Stabilizer

Use this additive before short- or long-term (offseason) storage. Quickstor stabilizes fuel for up to a year and keeps fuel ready to use when it’s time to put the boat back on the water. For best results, always treat fresh fuel before storage. Fill the boat tank when possible.

  • Prevents regular and ethanol-blended fuel from breaking down and oxidizing.
  • Prevents fuel system corrosion.
  • Prevents gum and varnish from forming in the fuel and settling in fuel lines and tanks, carburetors, and injectors.
  • Keeps injectors and carburetors lubricated.

Follow these fuel tips from Quicksilver:

  • Buy gas from known and trusted sources whenever possible. A busy fuel dock or filling station is likely to dispense fresh fuel.
  • When possible, avoid buying gasoline that contains ethanol. Never use gas with more than 10% ethanol (E10) in a marine engine. Gas containing a higher percentage of ethanol (E15 or E85) can damage a marine engine, and its use could void the warranty.
  • Keep your boat fuel tank full to prevent condensation from forming in the tank.
  • Check your engine fuel filter often. Fuel filters help prevent fuel contaminants from entering your engine. Under certain conditions it is possible for filters to suddenly become clogged, so always keep an extra filter on board should it need immediate replacement.
  • Install a Quicksilver Water Separating Fuel Filter of the correct size for your marine engine. In addition to fuel additives, water separating fuel filters also offer a great line of defense in keeping your fuel system free of water and other impurities.


Quicksilver® Fuel Care System products and other quality Quicksilver filters, lubricants and engine care products are available through Quicksilver dealers, retailers, and online at Go to Quicksilver Where To Buy for more information.

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