Help! Fuel Leak

4:08 p.m. on March 18, 2004 (EST)

I filled up my MSR fuel bottle (20 oz) last night (something called Coleman Camp Fuel) and put it in a side pocket of my backpack because I have a Boy Scout bike trip this weekend. Also, today I had to make a lunch presentation to the local Lions Club to ask for funds for a Boy Scout fifty-miler this summer. I threw (placed gently) the pack in the back of the car horizontally for "show and tell". Well, I didn't screw the top of the bottle on right last night so the entire bottle leaked out and soaked the pocket and side of my Kelty pack and the bottom of the trunk of the car. I am airing everything out right now and it should all evaporate soon.

Should I do anything else? Will there be a flammable residue or is it safe after it all evaporates? Kelty calls this fabric "Hardline Fabric & Nylon Microfiber" . Thanks for your help and advice. Paul N.

9:44 a.m. on March 19, 2004 (EST)

Gasoline doesn't melt the pack fabric like it might with some nylon synthetics. The drying/airing of the car will take a while; make sure the car is aired thoroughly before driving it or closing it up via probably leaked through several layers. You need to be concerned of the potential explosive situation if not completely aired. The only residue I've seen is a brown stain on the ligher colored fabrics that should wash out with water + soap. The smell will linger a few days but not forever. Leave windows open on sunny days for a week.
I've done the same. I always put my fuel bottle in a plastic bag now but I'm not very careful to make it a ziplock or keep it twist tied all the time. Spillage anywhere is the major drawback of wet fuels...moreso with gasoline over alchohol. I've had my coleman stove piss fumes when walking even when its not pumped up...another plastic bag candidate. Steve

10:29 a.m. on March 19, 2004 (EST)

Thanks for the input. I looked at the fuel can again and its called Ozark Trails Camp Fuel which is probably a butane mix. Actually, the car is an old beater so I wasn't as concerned with it (other than the car bomb potential)( I can just see the headlines "Scout Leader Suspected Terrorist after Inadvertant Car Bomb Explosion"). I was more concerned with the long term affects on my backpack. However, as it turns out, the pack is a Kelty 50 anni. model so I am able to remove the offending pocket and give it a good soaping. Nothing else in the pack got wet.

8:53 p.m. on March 21, 2004 (EST)
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Thanks for the input. I looked at the fuel can again and its called Ozark Trails Camp Fuel which is probably a butane mix.

Nope, no butane in it. It is basically naptha, just like genuine Coleman fuel, with some other stuff for stabillzing. Yeah, give it a very good airing in a very well ventilated area. But, sorry to say, there will always be a slight smell, thanks to the heavier components of the fuel (not flammable, though, any more than the nylon of the pack itself). You can cut the heavy components with rubbing alcohol to dissolve the lacquers, plus soap and warm water (real soap, preferably, not detergent).

12:08 p.m. on March 23, 2004 (EST)


Actually, the smell is alot better now than when my wife forgot she put a gallon of milk in the back of the car for a day and it got banged around and ruptured. Good Lord, it stunk for months!!

Anyhoo, I will remove the pocket and give it a good soaping with Ivory bar soap. Thanks for the tip, Bill S.

May 26, 2018
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