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Gas mixed with water discovered at 2 Minnesota stations: What drivers need to know

Two Minnesota gas stations found to have water in gas
Two Minnesota gas stations found to have water in gas 02:26

MINNEAPOLIS -- Some Minnesota drivers have run into financial headaches after gasoline was found to be contaminated with water at a couple of gas stations.

But what can you do if you run into this problem and what does gasoline mixed with water do to a vehicle? Here's what you need to know.

What does gas look like if contaminated with water?

Gasoline that appears cloudy, or separates into visible layers, most likely contains water. Water is heavier than gasoline, which will float to the top.

What are some tips at the pump?

Most drivers are likely not checking what the gasoline actually looks like while at the pump, but there are things that can be done.

Drivers are advised to pay attention to the stickers on the gas pumps. It displays the year of the most recent test of gas quantity and quality.

If the sticker says it was tested within a year, or close enough to a year, it should give drivers the confidence the gas is safe to use.

What does water in gas do to your engine?

Drivers who are unfortunate enough to run into this problem will experience difficulties immediately. Water can damage the carburetor, among other parts of the engine.

If you suspect you've purchased water-contaminated gas, drain your tank and change your fuel filter.

What if it's not the gas station's fault?

If the station's gas isn't contaminated with water, the problem is likely your vehicle's gas tank.

If your tank is empty over the winter, it can collect water. The same goes if the gas cap is missing or improperly fitted.

Drivers are advised to keep their gas tank full in winter months and make sure the gas cap is tight.


Information from the Minnesota Department of Commerce contributed to this article. For consumers who have complaints about fuel, contact Weights and Measures here. More information on petroleum contamination here

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