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Old 09-26-2019, 06:08 PM   #1
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The art of finding good fuel

Hello All, I hope this is the correct Thread...

When you are heading out to either the Bahamas or the Caribbean what is the best way to find fuel? Is there areas without or that sometimes have little or bad fuel? Is there an app you use or do you rely on this forum or another? After the recent hurricane I would think that would be a concern in some of the Bahamas right now and my neighbor is from Trinidad and says inland it is an issue to get fuel often so that is the cause of the question.
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Old 09-26-2019, 07:27 PM   #2
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Diesel or gas? I carry an additive with me for diesel.
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Old 09-26-2019, 07:31 PM   #3
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Hello Donna, thank you. Diesel is what I am asking about. Have you ever had trouble finding it and if so is there a specific area that would be the biggest concern? Region or island?
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Old 09-26-2019, 07:35 PM   #4
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Never had a problem with fuel or finding it. Typically travel the east coast of Florida and Bahamas. My trawler is extremely fuel efficient. Lucky there!
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Old 09-26-2019, 10:50 PM   #5
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On our boat we take on ~1000 gals at a time so we want to make sure we are getting good diesel fuel.


I usually try to find a commercial bunker or fuel supply as they normally pump several gallons a day, and are priced accordingly.
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Old 09-27-2019, 06:19 AM   #6
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Is there a good online resource for fuel around that area? Or anywhere, for that matter?

One rule of thumb I follow is quantity being delivered. A fuel dock that moves a lot of fuel monthly will often be a better source than a smaller place that has fuel sitting in tanks for a while. Places that serve a lot of commercial vessels would be my choice if I was picking between that and a more recreational marina's fuel dock.
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Old 09-27-2019, 07:53 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Sheri View Post
Hello All, I hope this is the correct Thread...

When you are heading out to either the Bahamas or the Caribbean what is the best way to find fuel? Is there areas without or that sometimes have little or bad fuel? Is there an app you use or do you rely on this forum or another? After the recent hurricane I would think that would be a concern in some of the Bahamas right now and my neighbor is from Trinidad and says inland it is an issue to get fuel often so that is the cause of the question.

Hoist the sails. Oh, wait. Right, no sails.
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Old 09-27-2019, 09:53 AM   #8
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Never had a problem with finding fuel in the Bahamas. Now, quality of the fuel you find there, is a different question. I try and get it in places like Nassau that have a high turnover, but it's really a crap shoot, no matter where you get it.

I've seen some awful stuff come out of the hoses down there.
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Old 09-27-2019, 10:02 AM   #9
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Try Active Captain for finding fuel. If someone got a load of bad fuel it would most likely show up in the reviews.
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Old 09-27-2019, 10:02 AM   #10
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We've been from Trinidad and up through the Bahamas twice. We never had any fuel issues or talked to anyone who did although there were rumors of bad fuel. When we needed fuel, we asked around and/or looked at where the sport fishing boats fueled up. With a little planning you shouldn't have any issues.

You can get fuel at Bimini and Great Harbour, Berry Islands as they weren't affected by the recent hurricane. Points south shouldn't be an issue. Expect to pay high market prices though. All the fuel is imported.
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Old 09-27-2019, 10:14 AM   #11
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I try to refuel where there is a decent number of sportfishing fishing boats. Not necessarily commercial trawlers, since those guys are typically refueled by tanker truck. Not necessarily center consoles and walkarounds, since those guys burn gas.
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Old 09-27-2019, 01:15 PM   #12
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The problem with bad fuel in the Bahamas is that when you are taking a lot of it, like in a powerboat, there is no good way to filter it. We used a Baha filter funnel when we were fueling our sailboat, but we were never taking more than 40 gallons. The stuff in that funnel screen, was pretty shocking in a few places.
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Old 09-29-2019, 07:02 AM   #13
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I find theres far more talk about bad fuel than actual experiences with bad fuel. Going down through the islands there are always sportfish and big yachts that are burning way more fuel on a daily basis than most trawlers do for a season. Then there are supply boats and island generators that are burning fuel. Diesel supplys are always getting refreshed.
I worked for a guy who had intimate knowledge of fuel suppliers and he always said that even a ‘good’ supplier might get a bad load. Sure enough, I got bad fuel in Coinjock one time when the previous 10 stops were all fine. Called the marina when I saw water in the Racors and they admitted they had received a bad load. Used some Clear Diesel and kept draining racors and it cleaned up by the time I fueled up again.
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Old 09-29-2019, 08:05 AM   #14
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I find theres far more talk about bad fuel than actual experiences with bad fuel. Going down through the islands there are always sportfish and big yachts that are burning way more fuel on a daily basis than most trawlers do for a season. Then there are supply boats and island generators that are burning fuel. Diesel supplys are always getting refreshed.
I worked for a guy who had intimate knowledge of fuel suppliers and he always said that even a ‘good’ supplier might get a bad load. Sure enough, I got bad fuel in Coinjock one time when the previous 10 stops were all fine. Called the marina when I saw water in the Racors and they admitted they had received a bad load. Used some Clear Diesel and kept draining racors and it cleaned up by the time I fueled up again.
You must have some spare 5 gal buckets on board. How did you dispose of the adulterated fuel?
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Old 09-29-2019, 08:09 AM   #15
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The problem with bad fuel in the Bahamas is that when you are taking a lot of it, like in a powerboat, there is no good way to filter it. We used a Baha filter funnel when we were fueling our sailboat, but we were never taking more than 40 gallons. The stuff in that funnel screen, was pretty shocking in a few places.
I too have one of those funnel filters. Never found a need to use it but, it is there.
IF you have any doubt to the quality of the fuel, find another fuel dock.
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Old 09-29-2019, 09:51 AM   #16
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If you regularly cruise in areas of questionable fuel quality, add or re-purpose a tank to be a "new fuel" tank and set up filters and a transfer pump. New fuel only goes into this tank and is filtered / transferred to the other tanks (while fueling if necessary). And fuel is never drawn directly from this tank.
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Old 09-29-2019, 11:22 AM   #17
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I agree with Larry and recently have never had a problem in the Bahamas but years ago at Sandy Point I had to take on fuel rolled down the dock in 50 gallon drums. Used a Baja filter and paid a native to empty the filter when it got clogged (he dumped it on the ground “dats how we do it mon”).
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Old 09-29-2019, 11:55 AM   #18
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I agree with Larry and recently have never had a problem in the Bahamas but years ago at Sandy Point I had to take on fuel rolled down the dock in 50 gallon drums. Used a Baja filter and paid a native to empty the filter when it got clogged (he dumped it on the ground “dats how we do it mon”).
I suspect he can get away with it but, dont you try it.
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Old 09-29-2019, 12:08 PM   #19
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True, the laws don’t apply to natives, they can take lobster anytime and any size. Over the years I prefer to buy it from them and just enjoy the snorkeling.
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Old 09-29-2019, 12:12 PM   #20
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I used Power Service Products Clear Diesel. It pushed the water to the bottom of the tank where it ended up in the Racors. 30 minute engine room checks and lots of getting a few ounces out at a time. Maybe filled most of a 5 gallon jug that I disposed of at a big boatyard. They had lots of bins for different waste. Not sure what to do if you’re down island with that much watery fuel.
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