Fuel storage...

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by Bandit99, Sep 4, 2021.

  1. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    I am going to put up some fuel this winter. I normally put up a few 5 gallon cans but this time I want to get some 55 gallon drums and put them on a pallet and store in my garage and use a screw-in handpump to access them.

    I got a few basic questions which I thought I would throw out as might save me a lot of time researching:

    1. Do they make a plastic fuel drum that will accept a screw-in handpump or should I go with metal?

    2. What about used 55 gallon metal drums, should I look at them? Can I simply rinse them out with fuel or do I need do something else?

    3. Handpump... Anyone got any good recommendations and where to purchase?

    4. I'm thinking probably should have a spill mat of some sort, yes? Any recommendations and where to purchase?

    Any other ideas or recommendations?
  2. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    I tagged a few old threads.... maybe some good info regarding your questions.
    Gas Station
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  3. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    @Yard Dart Thank you, kind sir! I reread the posts. I'm thinking of something much simpler then what TnAndy built as I can barely cut a straight line.

    I'm just feeling a bit scared with all that is going on so going to do something simply: a couple of 55 gallon drums, on pallets, with a handpump. That's it. Even I can't screw that up! LOL! If I have to move them, I've got the tractor.

    I'm hoping they make some sort of plastic drum for fuel...
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  4. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    I use metal 55USG LubeOil drums after they were emptied, when I needed Emergency Fuel Storage containers.. That way I didn’t have to worry about the dreggs in the bottom of the drums… It just got mixed in with either the #1 or Gasoline that I was putting up… Never had an issue, noting that all my gas was non-ethanoled due to that is the only grade gas sold in most of Alaska…
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  5. techsar

    techsar Monkey+++

    I also use 55 gal used metal oil drums...but they are not as thick-walled as they used to be. If you seal 'em tightly, the top WILL buckle with temperature fluctuations...don't believe the "fill it completely" or only fill it to 80%....tried both and ended up having buckled tops.
    Don't underestimate hydraulic/pneumatic force :)
    Just recently picked up a heavy plastic drum that was used for atf. Haven't tried it yet, but it does have the standard bung holes on it.
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  6. Wildbilly

    Wildbilly Monkey+++

    I get used 55 gal metal drums from The Cary Co., they are cleaned, tested, inspected and guaranteed not to leak. I always rub down the outside, especially the bottom, of the barrel with oil/grease to prevent rust. I use regular ethanol gasoline, to which I add stabilizer (at the rate for long-term storage, not the rate for treatment) and rotate the fuel regularly. I have 2-55 gal drums of gas and 70-80 gals of diesel on hand, and would like to get more diesel. I have both a manual pump and a battery powered pump.
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  7. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grampa Monkey

    Metal drums will work fine as long as they are Petro rated! Like said above, make sure they are clean and keep them off the ground with a bit of air flow underneath to help prevent rust!
    For pumps, Napa have a line of commercial grade hand pumps, as do tractor supply and most ag/farm/ ranch stores, plan to spend upwards of $150+ for a good Petro rated pump! Don't forget the bung tools, makes life easier!

    Unless the plastic barrels/tanks are Petro rated, the fuel will break them down pretty quickly, leaving you with a nasty mess and wasted fuel, don't risk it taking the cheap route.

    They do make pallet sized plastic tanks that can handle fuel, those you will need to look for at chemical plants and supply companies, plan to spend a couple hundred for a good used one! Best for diesel/Jet-A and keep Gas in the smaller barrels so you only risk one part of your stash!
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2021
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  8. Altoidfishfins

    Altoidfishfins Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    If you're storing Diesel be sure any metal containers are not zinc plated / galvanized. The Diesel will dissolve some of the zinc which will then plate on to your injectors. Bad joo joo
  9. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    I have had the same luck, seal the tank and they buckle. Use empty oil drums 55 gal and sometimes I can get a smaller one, about 20 to 30 gal that work out better for the tractor. Rotate the gas more often that way. Use drum pump with suction about 2 to 3 in off bottom to limit water and run thru a filter. Farm service has a rack that they drain empty drums on so when I get them there is hardly any oil in them. Might bother a cat converter but not a regular exhaust system.

    No one can over stress the importance of grounding everything and an empty tank is the most dangerous, most fumes, and supply tank is pulling in oxygen to replace displaced fuel, so it is probably even worse.

    Never had a zinc plated one, thank you for the info. Galvanized is the more common name for those death traps. I have known a couple people who died from welding zinc and its contaminates in galvanized metal. One on the internet and one personally.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2021
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  10. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    If you have a tractor to move them, ok. A filled drum is working on 400lbs and a bit hard to move by hand.

    I built some 'drum pallets' for mine....I store 5 drums of gasoline and 10 of diesel fuel. I like this design because it doesn't allow the drum to shift sideways if you hit a bump when moving.

    I store all my drums in a shed WAY out away from everything else in case of fire. It's an open faced shed but built back into a hill so it stays relatively cool in summer. Never had a problem with filled, sealed drum expanding or collapsing...but DID have a partially filled one sealed tight collapse due to temperature drop....clearly the pressure inside lowered and the sidewall collapsed inward. The copper adapter is something I made up to 'expand' the empty drum back out with controlled shop air (and me 100' roll of air hose away :D )

    You might find plastic drums with 2" FPT bung threads, but all the drums I've seen have some special rough thread that only works on their plugs. All the fuel pumps I have (2 hand pumps and one 12v) use standard 2" female pipe thread.....which is what metal drums have.

    As for a hand pump, the make a rotary and 'back/forth" type. I have one of each. You can buy them at most decent farm stores or online. Search Results | Agri Supply

    Both are fine...If I recall, the rotary puts out about a pint per 360 degree rotation once you get it primed up (self priming), don't recall the amount on stroke type. The battery operated version runs something like 10-12 gallons/minute, but unless you're moving a lot of fuel, I wouldn't bother with one....either of the hand pumps will do fine.
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  11. Altoidfishfins

    Altoidfishfins Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    I don't need no stinkin' tractor.
    I can push those 400 lb drums of fuel around all day [LMAO][LMAO]
  12. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    You da man !!
  13. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grampa Monkey

    Turn them on edge and roll them!
    About twice a year down at the ranch, I have to fill both semi trucks due to use and logistics ( which is why I keep so much fuel on hand) the Pacific takes 380 gallons, and the Mack takes 90, easiest way to go is to move the truck to the fuel but sometimes that's an issue, so I simply roll the drums to the truck and fill them that way!
    I did rig a trailer for moving other stuff that can take the weight of two of the 55 gallon drums, it's getting them onto the trailer that's the hard part, unless you load empties and then transfer the fuel ( which is easy, but time consuming) and use that to fuel all the diesel equipment and gen set!
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  14. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Neat rig for moving drums. Thanks for the idea, need to build one. Getting to old for a 2 wheeler and a drum these days. Wonder about lifting barrel higher than storage tank and siphon it to the tank. build platform on shed next to fuel tank. Never had a lot of luck with the rotary pumps, after a couple years the sliders stick or the seals go. Can take them apart and clean and lube, but gas and lube doesn't work out well and there isn't fuel in them all the time.
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  15. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    All, thanks! This is just the type of info I was looking for.
    I do have one question which I didn't even think about (duh!) so good I got everyone's opinion...

    Question: How do I avoid these metal 55 gallons drums collapsing from temperature change when they are sealed?
    I planned on storing them in my one of my garages (metal pole buildings) to keep them out of the weather but even though I open/close the doors during summer/winter still gets damn hot or cold in there. I know my plastic 5 and 2 gallon containers will collapse/expand...

    @TnAndy I like your 'drum pallet' idea a lot and might even attempt to build one or two...heavy emphasis on the word 'attempt' LOL! It would make them easy to transport to fueling station in the truck. Or, I could just ask Altoidfishfins to come move them by hand :)

    Question: Is it lawful to transport a 55 gallon drum of gasoline as I plan on simply loading it in the back of the truck and taking it to filling station and driving it home?
    Altoidfishfins likes this.
  16. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    I've never had a sealed.....and by sealed, I mean screw the lid on tight and use a coat of paint over it......drum collapse if filled to within a couple inches of the opening. The one shown was around 1/2 full, with the lid screwed tight, no paint.

    Also, use PRI-G for preservation......nothing else.

    As to "lawful".....I don't know. I don't ask. I don't tell. I just do.
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  17. arleigh

    arleigh Goophy monkey

    If the drum is full there won't be a collapse issue have never had a collapse issue even on a partially filled drum.and I get freezing as well as 100+ degree heat year after year.
    Best not to vent the gas drum as it will gass off eventually. unless you are drawing from it and refilling regularly.
    My drums are on 4 wheel platforms that can easily be moved around, and I do this for space savings, having several drums.
    You will notice that if the drum is not full the differential changes in temperature will cause the top to pop, this, over time can cause metal fatigue so it's best to keep them full all the time until you are using the product. Full cans don't pop.
    There is a paste product available called water finder, I use it from time to time to check barrels I had been filling. Normally I use smaller tanks to go to the gas station with and fill the 55's a little at a time, but there is no guarantee that your not getting water from the station you're buying gas from, so I use my stick and put some of the paste on it and check it at the bottom of the drum, and if I spot any water I pump or siphon it out. I'll tilt the drum if I have to. I have a hoist in the shop for this and other needs.
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  18. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    Thanks Andy, got it! And, I just ordered the PRI-G for gas and PRI-D for my diesel. BTW I was looking around and your homemade pallets are indeed the best solution and I intend to make up a couple. Thanks again for taking the time to post your comments and photos.

    @arleigh "...and I get freezing as well as 100+ degree heat year after year."
    Thanks! This is what was worrying me as North Idaho we get great swings in temperatures during the seasons. This Summer it got to 110F! Totally unexpected for up here and I hope we don't see those type of Summers again for a long while. Thanks!
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  19. techsar

    techsar Monkey+++

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