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Trouble starting car blamed on water in gas

Three times this winter, during or after a several day freeze, my car won’t start without lots of gas peddle pumping. AAA tech said it was water in the gas and recommended HEET. I’ve used it with apparent success but wonder why I’ve never had this problem before in over 50 years of driving in the Seattle area.

If there was water frozen in the gas line pumping the gas pedal wouldn’t make any difference. The car wouldn’t start until the temperature rose above freezing.

It takes a LOT of liquid water to make an engine hard to start.

Most gasoline now contains ethanol, which works just like HEET. I think the “water in the gas” theory was incorrect, and something else is causing your starting problems.

Like McP, I am skeptical of the diagnosis. I would go ahead and put in HEET or equivalent gas line antifreeze, anyway, because the cost is minimal. For a while at least, I would use a Top Tier fuel like 76 or Shell and see what happens. I think all the fuel in that area has ethanol in it (no choice), so you should be getting enough alcohol to take care of any water issues, anyway.