There are some best practice tips that can be applied to minimise any risk to your tractor associated with E10 fuel:

  1. Don’t use fuel with an ethanol content higher than E10. Although it might be cheaper to purchase, none of the main manufacturers currently certify their engines for high ethanol use

  2. Purchase petrol for your tractor as you need it. If the price per litre of petrol temporarily drops, it may be tempting to ‘stock up’ for a year’s worth, filling jerry cans and leaving them in the garage until you need them. This is a false economy. Petrol has a ‘shelf life’ and leaving E10 petrol in this way could likely lead to a build up of water

  3. Don’t use metal jerry cans. Transport the petrol from the petrol station in approved, plastic sealed petrol storage containers. Ensure that the container is fully sealed when not in use and store it away from direct sunlight. This will reduce the likelihood of water forming in the container

  4. Consider using a fuel additive if necessary. If there is water in the fuel, it can quickly corrode rubber and metal and create a build up of a ‘mayonnaise’ substance that can gum up the inside of your engine. Fuel additives contain corrosion inhibitors that can help protect metal components by forming a protective barrier and a detergent substance will prevent the gumming up of the inside of your engine. Speak with your dealer for their recommendation and to see if this is required for your model of tractor

  5. Ensure that you tractor is serviced every year. Just like with a car, an annual service of your tractor is essential. Your dealer will be able to spot early any specific signs that the fuel is causing a problem. Ensuring that your air and fuel filters are regularly changed is also essential for the smooth operation of your machine

  6. ‘Run out’ your tractor if it is to be left unused for an extended period of time. If you know that your machine will be sat unused or after the last cut of the season, park your tractor in an open, outside area close to where it is to be stored. Run the engine until it runs out of fuel. Pull out the transmission dump valve to enable the tractor to be freewheeled, then push the machine into the storage area