Fuel is necessary to many modern processes or equipment. Modern fuels are what have allowed the leap forward from 3rd world to industrialized nations. While modern fuels are not necessary for survival, they are certainly important for maintaining a semi-modern lifestyle in the post apocalyptic world.
- Butane - a flammable gas that is primarily used as a lighter fuel, but has many other purposes.
- Coal - the world's largest source of electrical energy production. It can also be used for cooking or to produce heat. Coal is an extremely abundant resource, but it requires large scale efforts to mine.
- Diesel - a petroleum derivative used primarily for operating vehicle engines and generators, but it is also used to generate heat or cook with. Diesel has 109% the fuel density of Gasoline by volume, but diesel engines will often be 20-40% more efficient than gasoline models due to higher compression ratios. Diesel fuel is not subject to any significant stability problems.
- Gasoline - is a petroleum derivative that is used in most cars and trucks, but is also used to operate generators and produce heat or run a stove. Gasoline has 92% the energy density of diesel by volume, and gasoline engines are less efficient due to reduced compression ratios.
- Kerosene - a coal or petroleum derivative, is one of the older fuels. Today it is used primarily for running portable stoves and heaters, but it can be used to run some engines.
- Propane - is a flammable gas used for many different purposes. It is typically used to run various appliances such as grills, ovens, and others. Propane can also be used to run generators or other engines.
- Waste oil - dirty lubricating oil that is drained from the crankcases of engines, can be burned for cooking or to produce heat.
- Waste vegetable oil - or waste vegetable oil can be used to operate some diesel engines as well as burned for heat or cooking.
- Ethanol (grain alcohol fuel) - is produced by distilling grains with a still. Although it is not as high in octane as petroleum based fuels it can be used to fuel vehicles and other internal combustion engines as well as fuels stoves for heat and cooking. Additionally it may be consumed or traded for other goods. Fuel injected gasoline engines may be modified to use ethanol fuel mixtures, but should not use more than a 10% addition of ethanol until extensive fuel system modifications are made. Without these modifications, ethanol will quickly deteriorate the various seals and pumps within the fuel system.
- Methanol (wood alcohol fuel) - is produced by distilling organic (plant) materials such as grasses. It is not as effective as ethanol and may not be used for drinking as it is poisonous. A still that has been used for methanol may not be then used for ethanol due to the risk of contamination.
- Wood Gas - A vaporous fuel made from 'baking' wood at high temperature with limited oxygen. The gas itself is made primarily of carbon monoxide and hydrogen, with inert nitrogen and traces of methane. While fuel to create wood gas is plentiful anywhere trees grow, a large, heavy 'gasifier' device must be built to properly convert wood to wood-gas. Also, due to the high percentage of carbon monoxide, wood gas is extremely toxic to breathe.
All gasoline legally sold in Brazil has at least 25% ethanol. Most cars sold in Brazil -- as well as the race cars in the 2007 and 2007 Indianapolis 500 race -- work fine with any ratio of gasoline to ethanol, including 100% ethanol (E100).
Please see each type of fuel for storage information.