Forget The Gas, Buy Motor Oil and Filters.
Most of the vehicles that we drive require gasoline to operate. Many of the small engines that we use every day also run on gasoline. So what happens if our supply of fuel gets cut off or becomes severely limited? Politics in this country has prevented the building of new refineries, the drilling and exploration of new oil fields while encouraging other countries to do so, ignoreed the potential of coal liquification projects to take advantage of our enormous coal reserves vilifying coal as an energy source and even now threatens war in a region that could severely curtail our access to oil supplies. To make matters even worse the government is now suggesting that we open the SPR to alleviate the pain at the pump. If we sell off this emergency reserve and we lose access to overseas oil our pain at the pump will just be beginning.
The government promotes energy efficient hybrids that get 30 or 40 MPG and cost more than most Americans now make in a year as the solution to our problems. I guess they never heard of a Ford Fiesta or Geo Metro with nothing but a gas burner to power it. While fuel efficiency is needed it is no panacea for a potential fuel shortage of our own making. We can do better when it comes to energy but it is something that takes time to accomplish without disrupting the economy. Our energy policy will change when the free market demands it and not before, no matter how much politicians try to force it. Politicians don’t seem to understand that or else don’t care. This leaves the taxpayer on the receiving end of some very bad decisions that can devastate them financially.
So what can we do? I have no doubt that when confronted with a serious fuel shortage, entrepreneurs and our All American shade tree mechanics will save the day, at least on a small scale. People have been in this boat before and have come up with solutions. We know that steam powered vehicles will work. Jay Leno got a ticket for driving his Stanley Steamer 75 MPH on the freeway. We know that vehicles will run on ethanol that anyone can produce in his backyard. We know we can build wood gas producers that will power a vehicle. We can produce bio diesel from crops. We can produce our own fuel locally from many sources if necessary. If the situation dictates that we have no choice due to shortages then Americans will produce their own fuel. This we can do. We can produce our own fuel but lubrication is a bit more than the average guy can do in his backyard, and lubrication will be essential to keep a car running. If you believe that fuel shortages or ultra high fuel prices are coming and you have a plan to make your own fuel then you will need to store a supply of motor oil and oil filters to keep your vehicle going.
There are a few things you should know about oil to assist in this endeavor. There are certain criteria to insure the optimum storage for oil & lubricants.
Keep the sealed container in a clean dry indoor area.
The ideal storage temperature is a stable temperature between 45-80 degrees fahrenheit.
Insure that no dust or moisture enters the container.
Keep grease containers stored upright due to bleeding (fluid separation) at higher temps.
Wipe off containers before opening.
If you store oil for long durations you need to check the products performance claims against current OEM specs for the car you plan to put it in. Vehicle specs change over time.
Amsoil and Exxonmobil both recommend a five year maximum shelf life for engine oils, including Mobil 1. Synthetic motor oils contain different chemical compounds than conventional motor oils which will give synthetic oil a longer shelf life. This is the recommended shelf life by the experts but since the formulas are mostly secret it is unknown how long oil will truly keep in prime condition. One fact is for sure. You won’t be driving in the future without it so you are going to use whatever you have at that point, all you can do is store it the best that you can and keep an eye on your engine. As for oil filters, you should store them in a water tight container to prevent rust formation and moisture damage to the paper element. Happy motoring.