MYRTLE BEACH SC (WMBF) - Longer days and warmer weather are making a comeback. That also means it's the season for backyard barbeques and other yard work. This is the time of year where people usually begin to pull out all the gas-powered equipment that's been stored since last year.
The Myrtle Beach Fire Department says anytime you haven't used equipment in a while, make sure to go through the general maintenance process before you use it for the first time. That will help you prevent a malfunction.
Experts say not to use gas with more than 10-percent ethanol in your mower, something to keep your eye on when you're filling up. There are some gas stations that have 15-percent ethanol gas or other fuel blends. The higher ethanol fuel is dangerous and is actually illegal to use in small engine equipment, like your mowers.
Firefighters say the key thing to note is to keep gasoline away from open flames, because it's really not the gas itself, it's the vapors you want to avoid igniting. They say it's important to take those extra safety precautions when filling up gas cans.
"Just when you're filling up your gas especially, make sure they are putting it on the ground a lot of times when you have a pickup truck or something like that or an SUV you might try to put it back of your truck there and try to fill them up. But again, that's a bad idea just in case there's an overfill now you have gasoline in the back of your vehicle. So, just make sure you leave them on the ground when you’re doing that, and you leave a little space in there for those vapors to expand, so it doesn't cause a problem down the road,” said Lt. Jonathan Evans with the Myrtle Beach Fire Department.