Keep in mind there is fuel stabilizer and then there is ethanol treatment. Number one is not necessarily number 2. For the record, I have run all my 2 cycle Lawnboys and Toro 2 cycle snowthrowers dry at the end of the season and have never had any issues. They all start one pull, two possibly, when coming out of hibernation. I do not, however, use ethanol fuel. Most of our stations only have the ethanol free in the 91 octane and while the higher octane serves no purpose on a lawnmower it does give the advantage of no ethanol. I go through about 8 gallons a month in the summer and winter varies. There is no problem with using a fuel stabilizer, especially if you are not going through a lot of fuel in a short time. If you are forced to use ethanol blend be sure to get ethanol treatment. I am sure that Stabil has both the regular fuel stabilizer as well as ethanol treatment. If you must store your equipment with fuel in it then stabilizer and/or ethanol treatment with stabilizer is a must and a full tank keeps moisture out. Bill
I think the ethanol treatment and the other stabils are just a waste. I have no issues with regular Stabil and all the gas I can get locally is 10% ethanol.
You won't have nearly any problems with dryrotting as I mentioned with 2 strokes as the oil keeps the rubber much better conditioned than a 4 cycle.
Mowers that used to go 10-13+ years until the rubber seats were cracked up and leaking are now doing it a few years sooner and I see more issued with leaking from people who say they always "run them dry".
I also explain to them that even when they die out they are not dry. There is a still a bit or fuel in the bottom of bowl that will evap and leave white powder or green residue behind and hopefully the deluge of fresh fuel the next season will be enough to dissolve everything and it run well but you never know. The top part that seals off and prevents your carb from overflowing and soaking air filter and leaking entire tank out of filling crankcase with gas IS dry after a couple of hours and that can start to crack up faster than if it was still in a fresh gas with a nice dose of stabilizer.
I tell all my customers (that I like) that the best way to do it is...
The last time you use the mower for the season-
DO NOT pour the old stale gas from your gas can into it.
Empty gas can (pour into car or elsewhere) and get a bottle of stabilizer.
Go to gas station. Pour 1 oz of Stabil for each gallon fuel into EMPTY can.
Pump gas into can.
Go home and fill mower with fuel.
Fill mower again and it will probably start up fine next season.
The customers I don't like as much I just let them bring them in every year and charge them the same to clean out carb.
The ones I really don't like, I **** them off or tell them to buy electric (since I don't work on those) and hope they never contact me again.
If I have to I might fix it for free if they promise to never call me again.
It's like loaning some people money....best way to get rid of them.