Red Max FAQs

Red Max R/C Fuel FAQs


How Do I pay with a Credit Card?

To pay with a Credit or Debit Card  –  click ” Proceed to Pay Pal” button on the Check Out Page.  Once on Pay Pal, click “Pay with Debit or Credit Card” button.  It logs you in as a guest.  There is no need to have or set up an account.


Why is my fuel a different color than it used to be?

The most common reason is the dye fades over time.  The best fuel dyes we have see will bleach out in about 6 weeks if kept in direct sunlight.  The worst fuel dyes that we have seen, will fade out in about 1 hour exposure to direct sunlight.  The dye fading tends to have little effect on the performance.  However there are a few things that can affect the performance:

Have you exposed the fuel to sunlight or temperature extremes over an extended period of time?  Sunlight can cause photochemical reactions to take place in your fuel which degrade the performance.  High temperatures can cause thermochemical reactions to occur, as well as simple evaporation of components, which can change component percentages. However, the main problem with temperature changes is that drastic changes in temperature can actually cause the bottles to crack, letting moisture into the fuel and releasing fuel components. All model fuel should be stored in a safe cool, dry location away from sunlight, temperature extremes, children, and pets. .

Why has my fuel turned black or why are some of the parts turning black?

Are you using brass in any form, like a fuel clunk or tubing? Nitromethane reacts with brass over time, eventually turning it to powder.  It will turn the fuel black and degrade the performance.  Especially if you are running high nitro fuels, like Boat Racing fuels, use non-brass components.

Why is my engine losing power as soon as I pull off the plug?

Has the fuel been exposed to moisture? The methanol in the fuel absorbs moisture right out of the air, so all fuel should be kept in a sealed airtight container. If the engine diagnosis is “it runs, but it just doesn’t seem to run right”, then you can bet that the fuel has probably collected some water.

Why is my engine turning brown/black over time?

Are you running a fuel with castor-based oil in it? Castor oil is indeed a great oil for rust prevention and increasing compression, but it is a sticky, gooey mess when it burns. It leaves behind a brown varnish that is very difficult to remove. The varnish doesn’t hurt anything, it is just unsightly. You can avoid the color change and messy clean-ups by using fuels with our synthetic-based oils. Red Max synthetic oils are superior to castor in just about all respects, and absolutely run much more cleanly.

Why is my fuel not working right?

Are you using the correct fuel for your engine? Red Max fuels come in a variety of blends, each designed for a specific purpose. The airplane fuels generally have about 19% of a medium-weight oil, designed for long engine life and good throttle response. The helicopter fuels generally have about 20-22% of an extremely light-weight oil, designed for engine cooling, as well as a nice smoke trail. Some people have tried running this helicopter oil in some 4-cycle engines, with mixed results. If you know exactly what you are doing and setup the engine correctly (expert level adjustments), then it works just fine. However, most people do not go to this trouble and have problems with the engine running too cool. Instead, it would be better to run our Red-Max 4-cycle fuel, which is designed for 4-cycle engines. We have old-type blends with about 15% oil, and new-type blends with about 19% oil. The car/truck fuel is also a totally different blend, with only about 12% oil, designed for quick acceleration and throttle change.

Likewise, we have special blend fuels, for pattern/performance use, diesel fuel mixes, big supertigre fuel, high-nitro boat fuel, etc, as well as variations on different fuel types.

It is never a good idea to put the wrong type of fuel in your engine, unless you know exactly what you are doing (i.e. an expert on engine design and calibration with years of experience). We made the different fuel types for exactly this reason, so that you can just pour it in and concentrate on the fun part: flying & driving. Once you have several years of experience with different engines and different fuels, then feel free to play around with different fuel blends. We will make custom blends to any specifications.

How long is my Red Max model fuel good for?

If you are using Red Max fuel with the synthetic-based oil, then you are good to go for years. The longest time frame we have heard reports on is about 15 years in the back of a garage in a sealed container. That fuel ran like the fresh stuff. Basically, there is no particular shelf-life on the synthetic-based fuels. The components do not degrade much over time as long as they are in a sealed container. However, once the fuel is exposed to air, and therefore to moisture, it can degrade quickly! The methanol (methyl alcohol) in the fuel absorbs moisture right out of the air. Always keep your fuel jugs sealed tightly when not in use. Also, it is best to keep the fuel jugs on a dry shelf rather than a concrete floor, which can still be a small moisture source. Also, keep the fuel away from places where the temperature changes rapidly over time, like a furnace or a/c unit, as the ongoing temperature changes can not only alter the fuel properties, but weaken and crack the plastic fuel containers.

Fuels with castor-based oil are good for much lower times, as the castor oil does break down over time, forming small particle flakes. This is a natural occurrence in most vegetable based oils. Usually, this does not cause any lubrication problems, but the small particles can block fuel ports, affecting throttle and idle. Actually, it is a good idea to shake up your fuel just before you put it in your engine to make sure that all fuel components are thoroughly mixed.

Diesel fuels have a fairly short shelf-life, as the ether tends to seep out over time, fairly quickly. It is very difficult to keep it sealed in. Typical shelf-life is about 6 months. However, you can boost up old diesel fuel by adding more ether to it. Of course, pure ether is difficult to come by these days. Some people have used starter fluid successfully. Basically though, only get as much diesel as you reasonable expect to use in a short time.


How to I get set up as a dealer for FHS products?

Please Contact Us to be set up as a dealer for Red Max R/C fuels.

For Model/Hobby Stores:
To become a dealer for FHS Model Products, we need to get a copy of your business license, tax id #, and a letterhead, business card, or advertising showing that you are in the hobby/model industry. You can fax these to our machine. Once we have these items, we will fax you a copy of our dealer package. We have price breaks at various quantities of model fuel. Approved dealers can take 15% or more off the listed retail prices. Payment is by credit card, prepayment for shipped orders, or (COD for pick-ups only).