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The Best Gas Additives to Power Your Engine and Save You Money

The most important part of any car is the engine. I don’t care what any of those novelty mud flap enthusiasts say. If your engine isn’t giving you the performance you want, or if filling up on gas every day is stretching your budget, you should consider picking up a gas additive.

Quick Look: Our Top Picks

Gas Additive NameQualityPriceRating
Yamaha Yamalube Free Ring PlusA+$
Star Brite Star Tron Enzyme Fuel TreatmentA+$
Torco AcceleratorA+$
Sta-Bil Fuel StabilizerA++$$
BG 44K Fuel System CleanerA+$$

What are gas additives?

If you’re like me, you did not do so great in high school chemistry, you might be a little nervous about using a gas additive. Thankfully, understanding and mastering gas additives is a whole lot easier than you’d think.

The 4-stroke process of the common engine shows gasoline pushed throughout the engine at a rapid pace; we’re talking literally thousands of times every 60 seconds. Because of the constant flow of fuel passing through, gasoline deposits tend to build up on the engine’s intake valves pretty quickly.

These deposits can seriously affect the engine’s performance as they absorb large amounts of gasoline, resulting in a significant discrepancy between the amount of gas you pay for and the amount of gas you actually use.

Gas additives help reduce the risk of damage to your engine and wallet by removing gas deposits from the intake valves and preventing any further accumulations from developing. By limiting the buildup of gas deposits, gas additives ensure your engine stays healthy and your gas supply lasts for longer. Improved gas mileage is a major reason people turn to gas additives, as rising gas prices have been a common gripe for auto consumers for years now.

Doesn’t gas already have additives?

If you have any prior knowledge of vehicles and gasoline, you may be asking yourself “doesn’t gas already have additives?” And you’re right, gas additives are indeed present in all gasoline.

This can be traced back to a rule introduced by the Environmental Protection Agency which demands that a certain level of deposit-limiting additives be present in all US fuel.

However, the level set by the EPA regarding the minimum amount of additives gasoline must contain is actually quite low. While top-of-the-line gasoline will usually contain well over the EPA’s mandated minimum, less-expensive alternatives often include little more than what is necessary to pass government regulations and make it to the market.

As a result of the aforementioned perpetually rising gas prices, many motorists have turned to cheaper fuels in an attempt to cut costs. This means there is very little to prevent harmful gas deposits from collecting in intake valves.

For this reason, it is necessary to introduce further gas additives. A small amount of an additional additive, combined with what is already present in your fuel, will provide a simple and economical solution to minimize gas deposit buildup.

Do gas additives really work?

My father was a pretty savvy businessman; I mean the guy wouldn’t have seemed out of place in Mad Men. He gave me a lot of useful advice while I was growing up. These tidbits included the little gem, “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.”

For many people, a liquid which has the ability to improve their car’s engine while limiting both their emissions and the amount of money they spend on gas seems too good to be true. This is understandable. Heck, I was pretty skeptical of gas additives myself at first.

The reputation of gas additives took a bit of a hit a number of years ago when a Nevada-based gas additives’ producer was threatened with legal action by the Federal Trade Commission.

According to the FTC, the additive in question was almost completely useless, despite the manufacturer’s claims that it significantly decreased emissions while increasing gas mileage. In the end, the brand behind the subpar gas additive was forced to pay out nearly $1 million, and the FTC issued thousands of dollars in refund checks to customers who were defrauded.

While this will justifiably shake your faith in gas additives, it is important to remember that the actions of this one manufacturer do not speak for the hundreds of gas additive brands around the world.

There are plenty of reputable gas additive manufacturers who have been in business for years and have built up scores of loyal customers. I know more than a few auto enthusiasts who swear by gas additives and insist their engine’s performance would be significantly poorer without them.

While the Environmental Protection Agency does not exactly endorse the use of them, it has compiled a list of certain gas additives which have been rigorously tested and proven to meet or exceed their standards. The list of approved manufacturers is on the EPA website.

The 5 Best Gas Additives

Gas Additive NameQualityPriceRating
Yamaha Yamalube Free Ring PlusA+$
Star Brite Star Tron Enzyme Fuel TreatmentA+$
Torco AcceleratorA+$
Sta-Bil Fuel StabilizerA++$$
BG 44K Fuel System CleanerA+$$

Yamaha Yamalube Free Ring Plus

Yamaha Yamalube Free Ring Plus-5beabd405c5fe

Some people have garages full of Yamaha products. If you’re one of them, Yamalube Free Ring Plus is probably the gas additive you’ll be most interested in.

Pros

  • Superior deposit control: Yamaha has more than its fair share of critics. However, even its staunchest critic must admit that Yamaha has an expert design team. That expertise is as evident as ever in Yamalube Free Ring Plus. It provides greater deposit control than you would expect to see from most gas additives and will restore your engine to all its former glory.
  • Metal filmers: Certain ingredients found in gas additives are corrosive and could seriously damage parts of your engine. Thankfully, this gas additive features metal filmers which will provide protection to silver solder, copper, aluminum, and steel, making it perfectly safe for recurring use.

Cons

  • Unsecure container: It’s pretty difficult to find anything negative to say about this gas additive itself. From my own experience, it does everything it claims to do. However, the container which the liquid is sold in is pretty flimsy. It can be easily opened, which can be problematic if you have young children, and is prone to leaks and spills.BUY THIS ONE

Star Brite Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment

Star Brite Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment-5beabd4072aa0

If an engine has been left sitting idle for an extended period of time, it may not perform to its highest standard when you finally start it up. Star Brite’s Star Tron Enzyme Fuel is a great way to resurrect an older engine.

Pros

  • Long-lasting effects: If you have a vehicle that you don’t get to use as often as you’d like, you could benefit from purchasing this additive. It stabilizes fuel for up to two years at a time, reducing the risk of fuel injectors becoming clogged and eliminating the need to drain your engine.
  • No damage from overdosing: If you’re new to gas additives, you’re probably paranoid about adding too much and damaging your engine. While there are some gas additives which will have adverse effects on your vehicle if you add too much, this is not one of them. It won’t harm your engine should you accidentally use too much of it, so there is plenty of room for beginner’s error.

Cons

  • Reported slow results: While the majority of those who have tried Star Brite Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment have noticed a difference in their engine’s performance right away, some report that the additive takes days, or even weeks, to come into effect.BUY THIS ONE

Torco Accelerator

Torco Accelerator-5beabd408a7c1

According to the folks at Torco, their high-octane Accelerator gas additive is the single best gas additive on the market. It’s a bold claim, but their confidence isn’t entirely unjustified.

Pros

  • Ideal for racing: If you’re somebody who likes to race their vehicle, be it on an official track or in some slightly less legal setting, you’re going to get a lot of use out of this gas additive. Torco Accelerator has the ability to raise octane levels to 95, 102, or even 105, should you want to go that high.
  • Compatible with older vehicles: Vintage cars can be quite difficult to repair, so a lot of owners find themselves shying away from gas additives altogether so as not to risk damaging their vehicles with an incompatible product. Torco Accelerator, however, works just as well with engines of the 50s and 60s as it does with the engines of today.

Cons

  • Information is hard to find: Torco is lucky it became an established brand before the internet took over the world, because it’s online presence leaves a lot to be desired. The company website is convoluted and hard to follow, leaving most potential customers to base their decisions on reviews left by past customers.BUY THIS ONE

Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer

Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer-5beabd40a74ac

Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer will give you long-lasting results, stabilizing fuel for up to 2 years and prevents the build-up of gum and varnish inside your engine.

Pros

  • Versatile: There are plenty of fuel stabilizers on the market, but a lot of them are exclusive to certain kinds of engines and will damage your vehicle if used incorrectly. This fuel stabilizer, however, works perfectly on a variety of seasonal engines, such as lawn mowers and boats.
  • Long lasting: While the results of Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer are long-lasting, the actual product itself will last for months at a time. One 16-oz. bottle of Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer is enough to treat 40 gallons of fuel.

Cons

  • Unsecure container: There seems to be a trend developing of quality gas additives coming in less than stellar containers. You may remember me complaining about the Yamalube bottle being too easily accessible for children. The same is true about the Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer container. Some bottles leak during transit or arrive dented and cracked.

BUY THIS ONE

BG 44K Fuel System Cleaner

BG 44K Fuel System Cleaner-5beabd40bd710

BG has been on top of the gas additives mountain for decades and has both dedicated followers and vocal detractors. I’m not about to start a war in the comments section by revealing which side I’m on, but I will say that BG’s 44K Fuel System Cleaner is pretty impressive.

Pros

  • Suitable for professionals: If you work with vehicles for a living, you know how important it is to use only the best equipment and products available. BG 44K Fuel System Cleaner has been the go-to gas additive of auto professionals for over 4 decades.
  • Protects engine components: While a lot of the cheaper gas additives will remove deposits from your intake valves, they can often cause serious damage to other parts of your vehicle’s engine thanks to corrosive ingredients in the formula. BG 44K Fuel System Cleaner poses no risk to any part of your engine. Precautions have been taken to minimize the effects of the corrosive elements in the fuel, so you won’t be forced to choose between healthy intake valves and a healthy catalytic converter.

Cons

  • Expensive: The major drawback of BG 44K Fuel System Cleaner is its cost. Because of its reputation as a professional gas additive, it tends to go for quite a bit more than most gas additives on the market. While it is an investment for mechanics, it may stretch the budgets of those who are looking for a simple gas additive for personal use.BUY THIS ONE

Which additive is best?

So, now that it’s time to wrap things up, which of these products can claim the title of Best Gas Additive? It’s a difficult choice, and I’m sure some people will disagree, but I’ve got to go with BG 44K Fuel System Cleaner.

I know it may be a little on the pricey side, but for a few extra dollars, you get immediate and complete cleaning of your engine’s intake valves, fuel injectors, and combustion chamber.

Furthermore, this additive will prove an economical choice in the long run, as you can significantly increase the mileage of 20 gallons of gasoline.

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