How Long Does Kerosene Last?


Kerosene, when properly stored, has a shelf life of two to five years. Adding a fuel stabilizer once a year should keep the kerosene in good condition indefinitely.

Kerosene is an oily fuel mostly used for heating and cooking. It can also power generators that produce electricity. Standard kerosene is available in two types. The most common type of kerosene is K-1, which has a low sulfur level making it acceptable for unvented heaters and stoves. Kerosene produces carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide and sulfur oxide when burned. If burning it indoors, make sure there is adequate cross ventilation to limit intake of dangerous fumes.

Store kerosene in the original packaging or an approved blue container. When storing kerosene, keep it in an outside building or enclosure and away from any ignition sources, because kerosene vapors can travel fairly far. If storing large amounts of kerosene, a fuel oil tank can be used. Though kerosene does not explode like gasoline, it does still ignite. Kerosene should also be stored in as airtight of a container as possible because kerosene accumulates water when exposed to oxygen. If water collects from the kerosene being stored too long, there are filters on the market to remove the water from the kerosene.