Is "dry gas" worth the extra cash?

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Apr 01, 2003

Dear Tom and Ray:

Every time I fill my gas tank, I buy half a quart of dry gas. My father says it really helps with the fuel line and keeps things
clean. Is this stuff legit, or am I wasting my cash? -- Chris

RAY: Well, we think you're wasting your cash, Chris. This stuff is mostly alcohol, which absorbs any moisture that is in your gas tank.

TOM: The idea is that by getting rid of any water in the tank, you eliminate the chance of the water freezing in the fuel line and
preventing the car from running.

RAY: But to be honest, we haven't seen a frozen fuel line in our garage in a decade or more. Why? It could be because gasolines are
better-formulated now. All gasolines have alcohol already mixed into them.

TOM: Or it could be the result of fuel injection, which is now universal.

RAY: Plus, the dry gas doesn't really clean anything. Gasolines have detergents in them, which do a better job of cleaning than alcohol

TOM: That said, please don't tell your father that we said he's all wet. Fathers are very sensitive when it comes to automotive
information they pass down to their children.

RAY: And telling him he's been wasting a dollar a week for the past 50 years will pale in comparison to the realization that his kid
doesn't think he's the final authority on all things automotive.

TOM: I'm sure there's a temptation to stick his nose in it, Chris, but be kind and avoid the temptation. And when your kids write to us
in 20 years, we'll tell them to do the same thing for you.

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