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Old 06-10-2015, 11:30 AM   #1
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Water in Fuel - Honda EU2000

I bought a pair of EU2000s in early April. Bought a new gas can, filled it with fresh gasoline and fueled both up. We took them on one trip and used them to run our 27FB for several hours and everything was great. I started them both up for several minutes in early May just to exercise them. Next time I went to use one of them was when a neighbor lost power. One of them would not start although the other worked fine.

I took the one to the shop and found out that I had water in the fuel tank and it cost me $120 to drain the tank and carb and replace the seals.

For the life of my, I can't figure out how the water ended up in the tank of one of the gen sets. It rained a lot in Texas in May and I am sure that both the gen sets and the fuel tank were in the back of the truck during one or more rain storms but I wouldn't think that with caps on both the generators and the gas can that much water would get into either one. Between trips they are stored under cover.

I know that ethanol has an affinity for water but again, how did enough water get into the gas can to shut down my generator? The other problem I have is a 1/2 full gas can that I apparently need to empty out to make sure it doesn't have water in it.

Anybody have any ideas?
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Old 06-10-2015, 12:57 PM   #2
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After a bad experience with my boat and ethanol, I only use ethanol free fuel with gas stabilizer in my Hondas and all my small engine equipment.
Could it have been old ethanol that caused your problems? That's what caused mine, ending in a valve job on my boat.


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Old 06-10-2015, 01:15 PM   #3
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If the can was not completely sealed the thermal cycle over night may have pumped humidity into the can.
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Old 06-10-2015, 02:04 PM   #4
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There are some great You Tube videos about maintaining these generators.
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Old 06-11-2015, 11:45 AM   #5
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A tank that is not full creats surface area for humid air to condense. Basically the humid air in the empry part of the tank condenses on the walls. As the cap breathes, more humidity will migrate into the tank and more condensation can form. The ethanol gas is not helping either. Try to use ethanol free gas, use a fuel stabilizer and keep the tanks full
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Old 06-11-2015, 11:55 AM   #6
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A little water goes a long way

I put my 2000 up for several months and it wouldn't start. I ended up having to remove the carburetor, disassemble it and clean it and put it back in. Worked fine after that.

You didn't have to have much water. Only a little water can cause enough corrosion to stop up the jet. And the water goes to the bottom of the bowl, right where it can cause the most trouble. Also the ethanol can cause seals to deteriorate. Use a fuel stabilizer and/or ethanol free gas.

Now I be sure that the carburetor is empty when I store it. There are You-tube videos about alternate ways to do this. If you use one of the techniques where you run it until it runs out of fuel, just don't do it with a load on the genset.

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Old 06-11-2015, 12:03 PM   #7
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I always use Sea Foam gas additive in all gas that I use. It dissipates the water, cleans the carburetor, and makes starting my lawn/garden (and generator) equipment easier. Also make sure when not using your generator for long periods, to drain the fuel or run the tank dry.
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Old 06-11-2015, 12:20 PM   #8
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For alcohol free gas stations see:

Ethanol-free gas stations in the U.S. and Canada
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Old 06-11-2015, 01:08 PM   #9
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Sta-Bil

JConsroe knocked it out of the ballpark with his post. Read & heed.
Being a generator mechanic in the Army, I dealt with this on a daily basis.
After owning many boats, I swear by Sta-Bil. I put it in every time I filled up the boat, winter or summer. It can be had at WallyWorld for around 11 bones and that treats 80 gallons of fuel. It's a lifesaver for any naturally aspirated engine, regardless of the cubic inches of the beast you're feeding.
Definitely keep your cans full if you can, but imatellinya...if you use Sta-Bil just once, you won't fill up that can again w/o it, I promise. Worth every penny.
Sea ya down the road,
Gavin
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Old 06-11-2015, 01:22 PM   #10
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Very likely the fuel can being half-full. On a hot day the fuel expansion is huge, night time there will be enough pressure differential to pull a lot of damp air. It does not take a lot of moisture to mess with ignition. At sea on long voyages I'd never refuel with just half a can - all or nothing.

Another issue is the seal on your fuel can. If it's leaking badly you have more than enough fumes to cause a flash-back or even an explosion in an enclosed space. Check those seals. Invest in a safety can.

Amazon.com: Eagle UI-50-FS Red Galvanized Steel Type I Gasoline Safety Can with Funnel, 5 gallon Capacity, 13.5" Height, 12.5" Diameter: Industrial & Scientific
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Old 06-11-2015, 01:48 PM   #11
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You guys are making me even more pleased that I converted my two brand new EU 2000i units to LP. Tested them this morning before hitting the road for a month beginning tomorrow. They had been sitting idle for a month... both fired up on the third pull. I read a lot of Honda generator posts and maintenance stories before pulling the plug on the LP conversion (and voiding the warranties... Yikes!) and 95% of the issues owners describe came down to gasoline problems. Plus, I can pull LP from the 20 lb bottles I carry, or the twin 30 pounders on the AS.
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Old 06-11-2015, 05:04 PM   #12
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Ethanol is hygroscopic. It eats aluminum using the water as a catalyst. It eats rubber seals. Ethanol blended fuel is the EPA's self aggrandizing idea for reducing CO/CO2 (Carbon Dioxide is now listed as Hazmat by the EPA) Never mind that leaves love it and when photosynthesized it gives us Oxygen to breathe and help burn our fuel. Ethanol is used to raise the Octane Number in place of Toluene. (a Pure Hydrocarbon and the din of Global Cooling deniers.) OK I feel better now.

As a certified small engine mechanic, I see it all the time. If you plan on using the small engine within a week of refueling, it will be fine. Otherwise, drain the fuel into the appropriate container, and start the engine until the fuel is consumed. I put a capful of regular motor oil in each tankful and it has worked for me. No noticeable smoke or decline in performance. Disclaimer: do not do this in California, or any location that requires you to breathe air in shallow gulps......
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Old 06-11-2015, 05:15 PM   #13
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Oh, oh ethanol is now a hazardous material. EPA to ATF? Prohibition all over again. Thank God I, "cling to my Bible and guns......"

That's all..lest Mods come a knockin'. .....I'm just sayin'....
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Old 06-11-2015, 05:28 PM   #14
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Btw, it's listed as a class 3 flammable material. That's the definition of its "hazard "
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