Lead additive and Ethanol fuel treatments

35

Asked by Mar 31, 2013 at 11:15 PM about the Chevrolet Bel Air

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Does anyone have any thoughts regarding using lead substitute in my '63 Chevrolet BelAir with the 283 CID V-8 engine? I currently have it in winter storage with 89 octane unleaded fuel with StaBil in the tank. I have had some folks tell me they use the stuff religiously others tell me they never use the stuff and have no problems.  Also thoughts on using an additive to counteract harmful effects of Ethanol? We run E-10 in this area.

7 Answers

103,925

I wouldn't worry about the lead unless you are planning the Bel Air as a daily driver. The lead provided lubrication on the valve seals. Without lead, they wear out sooner and leak. If you're driving around a couple - three thousand miles a year, you'll be fine. I would continue to use StaBil to keep the alcohol in the gasoline stable.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.
9,055

Absolutely need the StaBil. You may find, to, that the rubber parts of the fuel system will need changing, and the carburetor may need rebuilding, as the ethanol is lousy for them, too.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
107,745

I don't know about your area but out here we have some stations that sell regular unleaded fuel, no ethanol, at lot of farm equipment and boats here that ethanol messes them up. Might see if any are where you live. I would switch to the Marine StaBil if you can't get the nonethanol stuff.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
74,155

GM vehicles 1970 and older were designed to run on leaded fuel. But if you've had the heads rebuilt using hardened valves and seats you can safely use unleaded. I would suggest using a lead substitute if you plan on taking a trip at expressway speeds or use the car as others have said as a daily driver. For around town, low speed driving you should be ok without it. I personally always use it in my pre-1971 GMs. HTH. -Jim

4 of 4 people found this helpful.
Best Answer Mark helpful
35

Thanks everyone, I appreciate each and every reply. I don't know of anywhere I can buy non ethanol fuel except aviation fuel at a gazillion dollars a gallon. Based on your replies I think I'll continue to run the lead substitute and the Lucas or StarTron Ethanol treatment with 89 octane unleaded mid grade fuel. The additives aren't that pricey and all the possible problems with not using them sound expensive. I don't plan on making the Bel Air a daily driver but I would like to take some longer trips where I will be getting up to highway speeds for extended periods of time, in other words I won't be trailering it either. Probably about 2 to 3 K miles a summer. My only hangup with the Ethanol additives is I don't really see from their advertising what they actually DO. Thanks again to all for your informative replies. :-)

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I have a question? I have a 63 Chevy bel air. Why would it keep stalling out. Ty

35

Wow!! I'm no mechanic , but first question would be gasoline. What octane are you running? How old is the gasoline? Did your car just come out of storage? Is there a possibility of water in your gasoline? How many miles on the spark plugs? Does your car still use points and a condensor or is it electronic ignition conversion. ? I'd start cheap with a can of dry gas and fresh gasoline. Check with some classic car guys and find who in your area is Knowledgable with carburetors. a new fuel filter is pretty cheap too if you want to tackle this issue by hanging parts :-)

Your Answer

Bel Air

Looking for a Used Bel Air in your area?

CarGurus has 234 nationwide Bel Air listings starting at $72,995.

ZIP:

Chevrolet Bel Air Experts

  • #1
    WheelerDealer
    Reputation
    200
  • #2
    tenspeed
    Reputation
    190
  • #3
    COMETGUY61
    Reputation
    150
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Chevrolet Impala
521 Great Deals out of 33,150 listings starting at $1,495
Used Chevrolet Camaro
497 Great Deals out of 31,046 listings starting at $2,495
Used Chevrolet Corvette
108 Great Deals out of 16,074 listings starting at $3,000
Used Ford Mustang
437 Great Deals out of 42,782 listings starting at $1,488
Used Dodge Charger
428 Great Deals out of 35,049 listings starting at $2,000
Used Chevrolet Nova
166 listings
Used Chevrolet C/K 10
309 listings
Used Dodge Challenger
227 Great Deals out of 25,436 listings starting at $7,950
Used Chevrolet 210
55 listings
Used Chevrolet Silverado 1500
2,924 Great Deals out of 161,759 listings starting at $1,295
Used Ford F-150
3,205 Great Deals out of 226,291 listings starting at $1,250
Used Chevrolet Blazer
880 listings starting at $950
Used Chevrolet Monte Carlo
7 Great Deals out of 1,246 listings starting at $1,125

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.