How to Safely Throw Away Your Old Gasoline

Whether for the lawn mower, scooter, or truck, it is common for vehicle owners to have a stash of gasoline lying around. Having an emergency supply of fuel is great for times when you forget to fill up the tank, but there are some important facts you need to know about old gasoline.

Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846

Indianapolis Auto Repair and Service 317-475-1846


After sometime, gasoline loses its combustibility properties, making it quite difficult to get a car engine to turn over or stay fired up. Depending on the age and quality of the fuel, it may even be totally useless. But low combustibility does not mean non-flammable. Although gas will lose enough combustibility to render it useless for powering motors, it is still combustible enough to be a fire hazard. In fact, gasoline is still extremely flammable even if it is really old.

For this reason, tossing out your old gasoline is not as simple as taking out the trash. The degree of flammability makes gasoline a dangerous hazard, so it is vital to learn the safe and responsible way to dispose of it in your town.

Legalities of Fuel Disposal

You can’t just toss gasoline into trash receptacles, sewers, drains, bodies of water, or even down toilets. Not only can this put yourself and others at risk of fire hazards, explosions, and chemical exposure, there are laws that govern the legal disposal of private gasoline supplies. If you fail to meet these requirements, you will potentially face legal repercussions, such as fines, restitution, and even jail time. You should check with your county clerk’s office to learn your state’s ordinances regarding gasoline disposal.

Your Options for Fuel Disposal

Your first option for discarding old gasoline safely and responsibly is to combine it with your good gasoline. Although it has low combustibility, old gas can still contribute to ignition, and even extend the life of your good gasoline. If your old gasoline is especially dark and mucky, you should not use the first option. Instead, it will need to be entirely discarded.

To reuse old gas with new gas, just pour the remainder of old fuel into anything that takes it, such as lawn mowers, weed whackers, scooters, motorcycles, cars, trucks, and vans. For vehicles, you may want to consider using a fuel additive for best results, such as octane boosters, injector cleaners, and similar automotive products.

If you still have leftover fuel, or your fuel is too old to reuse, try this next option!

Your other option for safe and proper gasoline discarding is to contact a nearby disposal center. Simply track down a hazard waste collection and disposal center in your town that accepts contaminated gasoline. Keep in mind that these centers are usually only open to the public once or twice a week, so be sure to schedule accordingly.

Start by contacting your county or city waste management agency. They can give you leads for all the nearby centers that offer this service. You can also contact your local fire department or Indianapolis auto repair shop for information on safe gasoline disposal services.

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