Kerosene questions

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by HilltopDaisy, Nov 13, 2006.

  1. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Two years ago I bought a kerosene heater and about 5 gallons of kerosene. I never touched either one until a few days ago. I guess the kero is bad because the heater won't work. It was stored in a closed container in an open-sided shed. The heater was new, still in the box.

    I want to get new kerosene but how should I dispose of the old stuff. Also, I thought kerosene lasted longer than two years?
     
  2. logbuilder

    logbuilder Well-Known Member

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    You really don't know for sure whether the problem is with the fuel or the heater itself. Pour some of the kero into a metal cup and see if it will burn. If not, get more kero. If it will burn, issue might be with the heater.
     

  3. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    maybe it needs time to suck up enough kerosene into the wick. another issue could be moisture. since oils float on water, the wick will wick up the moisture first. you may have a bit of water in the bottom of the heater tank.

    make sure you give that new heater plenty of time to suck kero into the wick or you may burn too much of the wick while it is dry.
     
  4. shiloh

    shiloh Active Member

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    I/we have used kerosene much older that 2 years and never had a problem. Double check the heater.
    Yep. If the kerosene will burn, it is ok. We have used over 5 year old kerosene with no problems.

    Sometimes it takes a little while after you fill a new kerosene heater before it will work. 20 minutes should be enough.
    I hope you get it working.
     
  5. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Did the heater have kerosene in the tank during all the storage time?
     
  6. katlupe

    katlupe Off-The-Grid Homesteader Supporter

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    Don't pour it out!!! Just bring it to my house, I'll take care of it for you! LOL!!!! :)

    Seriously, I think MELOC is probably right. Sometimes the wick gets really dried out, and your's has never been used. So it's really dry.

    katlupe
     
  7. anniew

    anniew keep it simple and honest Supporter

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    Hilltop Daisy,
    I keep mine in a 275 gallon tank and often it takes 3 years to use it up. I only use it in the spring for the greenhouse and use it in a salamander heater, and the kero has never been bad.
    Ann
     
  8. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Poured some into a metal bowl and it actually looked like it had water mixed in. Matches went out when they hit it. Lit a newspaper and dunked it in and it didn't burn where it was wet. How do I safely dispose of this contaminated stuff?
     
  9. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    if it was water contaminated, now youll have to replace the wick.
     
  10. Sgt.Sausage

    Sgt.Sausage Well-Known Member

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    I just fired up an old (probably 16-17 year old) 5 gallon can I found out in the garage (until I get the woodstove installed in the garage, I'm using an old beat-up kerosene heater).

    Fired up and burned just fine. I don't think kerosene can actually go "bad". It's burning just fine for me. I would assume some kind of problem with the heater. I do occasionally (once a year or so) remove the wicks and scrape off the carbonized bits and give it a good vacum job. I replace the wicks about every 5th year (or when I can remember to do it).

    ==>if it was water contaminated, now youll have to replace the wick.

    I seriously doubt that. I've thrown mine (wicks) in the washer and drier (gentle cycle) to clean off encrusted carbon deposits before. They still work just fine.
     
  11. Fire-Man

    Fire-Man Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I agree with this-----------I got some kero over 5 years old I used last year------The heater was over 10 years old---hadn't been used till last year-------all worked good------I feel you might have another problem. Randy
     
  12. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    you put kerosene soaked wicks in the washing machine?

    eeeek.

    watery kero makes the wick burn badly and its a PITA to get them as clean as they should be.
    a wick is cheap... it will burn better with a new wick.

    in the washing machine.. really?
    how do you get the stink of kero out of the machine?
     
  13. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    How do I dispose of this nasty kero?
     
  14. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    pour ir on some trash and burn it.
     
  15. Oilpatch197

    Oilpatch197 Well-Known Member

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    You don't, you use the machines at the laundry matt. :cool:

    The one that says "oily-greasy clothes only"
     
  16. ET1 SS

    ET1 SS zone 5 - riverfrontage Supporter

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    Water contaminated fuel is good for spraying on the driveway weeds.
     
  17. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Thanks everyone. CNumb, I'll put it on stuff in the burn barrel, thanks.
     
  18. suitcase_sally

    suitcase_sally Well-Known Member Supporter

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  19. Hip_Shot_Hanna

    Hip_Shot_Hanna Well-Known Member

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    Our biggest problem with kerosene is finding it! The only places we've found within a sixty mile circle with us at the center are hardware stores. We paid $22 for 2.5 gallons! That's WAY too expensive... and I called around to gas stations (not all of them) and none of the ones I called carried kerosene.
     
  20. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    thats ODD...
    call someplace that sells home heating oil, they might have it.