GPO Transport and Recovery

Many of you will already know that we have a strong relationship with  GPO Transport and Recovery. We have worked together for many years and cannot thank Gary enough for providing us with a trustworthy, friendly and reliable service for ourselves and our customers. Here at 181, we consider GPO part of our team.

If, for any reason, you are unable to drop off or collect your vehicle, we are very happy to recommend GPO Transport. You can be assured that your vehicle will be in safe hands and taken care of as if it was their own.

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If you would like to find out more please visit their website


One issue with our classic vehicles which appears to be one of the most controversial and arguably one of the most important is fuel lines.

We’ve all seen those shocking pictures of someone’s pride and joy burnt out or badly fire damaged by the side of the road or even worse, by the side of your home and then read the ensuing comments of conflicting advice, information, arguments and opinions.

What we are about to show you and explain is based on over 30 years of experience working on, restoring and servicing all aspects of classic motoring.

Firstly, why do we need to check our fuel lines?

Due to environmental issues, cost implications and a host of other reasons, modern day fuel contains high levels of Ethanol (A renewable alcohol based fuel) which burns more cleanly than traditional petrol and has an increased octane rating. These are the positive sides to ethanol use in fuel.

The negatives are that it contains less energy than traditional fuel so you get less miles to the gallon and it absorbs water, even from condensation. The most severe issue when it comes to our classic vehicle engines however is that ethanol is corrosive and can slowly eat through cork and rubber seals and hoses. Modern day engines are built to withstand this and so it is much less of an issue.

When we leave our vehicles stood for long periods of time as is often the case with classics and campers, which may not be used during the colder months, modern fuel can sit eating away at fuel lines and corroding the joins and seals around fuel filters and carbs etc.

When this happens and the conditions are just right, fuel may leak from these hoses and slowly drip in and around your vehicle.  As the fuel is evaporating it converts to gas and this is where we can run in to potentially devastating problems.  All it takes is a spark and this gas and fuel can ignite.

There are obvious advantages to using premium unleaded fuels as these contain much less Ethanol (and in some cases zero).  A quick google on ‘UK ethanol free fuels’ can help you to find the best fuel for your vehicle.  However, it is often unavoidable and clearly more expensive.

So how can we reduce the risk and prevent potential fires?

Checking fuel lines is a crucial part of maintenance and something which is included in all our vehicle Health Checks which you can find out more about here:

Replacing old hoses and ensuring a proper tight seal is key to preventing fuel leaks. We only use barbed fuel filters and premium jubilee clips to attach hoses. These barbs make It virtually impossible to remove the hoses from the filter and so significantly reduce any risk of them slipping free and causing any leaks.

Now the question of fuel filter placement. Where is the best place to fit a fuel filter? We will use a late VW bay window in this example, but the reasons and explanations apply to any vehicle really.

 Placing the filter in the engine bay:

Traditionally fuel filters have been fitted in our engine bays and both fuel lines and filters are easily accessible for maintenance and checking. In all our years of experience, we have never had a single filter/hose fail and cause a fire as a result of fitting them here. This is because regular checking and replacement of old hoses, seals and filters is both convenient and obvious every time you open your engine bay.

  Placing the filter underneath your vehicle and away from the engine bay:

Positioning filters outside of the engine bay and underneath your vehicle has the advantage of being well ventilated. This means that should a leak develop; fuel will drip out under the vehicle and dissipate into the surrounding air reducing the risk of building up as gas inside your engine bay. Of course, with regular checks and proper maintenance this should not be an issue. This is no guarantee that a fire can’t occur as If the vehicle is stationary, gasses could still build up and any sparks could still combust leaking fuel. The disadvantage of this placement is that you are far less likely to notice any issues with fuel lines and filters when they are hidden. Unless you have a ramp or remember to crawl underneath your vehicle, you are likely to forget about them and this is when you may run into issues.

So, in our opinion, we prefer to install fuel filters properly in the engine bay where they can be easily maintained and checked for any issues. However, if you prefer for a filter to be relocated underneath your vehicle, we are happy to do this for you. There is no right and wrong placement, only pros and cons to both. The key thing and best way to reduce any risk is to check regularly and replace fuel lines and filters.

For any information or help replacing fuel lines or filters, please don’t hesitate to call, email or visit us at our workshop in Newark Nottinghamshire. We are just off the A46 and A1 and always happy to talk to fellow enthusiasts about the vehicles we hold so dear.


Take a look at our latest YouTube videos!


Exempt From MOT?

Is  your vehicle over 40 years old? You may be exempt from needing an MOT (registration & exemptions apply). It remains your responsibility to keep your vehicle in a road worthy condition.  We have put some thought into this and we can now offer you a vehicle Health Check  that is tailor made to classic vehicles & will give you the peace of mind that over 28 thorough checks have been carried out on your pride & joy.

Click Here for further for details of what’s included.

You can find out more about exemption, registration & exclusions here


It’s almost the season to be out on the road again and we know you’ll be feeling eager to ensure your vehicle is in tiptop condition…

We offer bespoke service packages designed to meet the need of you and your classic vehicle. Don’t delay and book in today to avoid any delays. Services from  just £99.

Click here for details


Wishing you all a Very Merry Christmas!

Thank you all for your custom & trading this past year.

We hope you have fantastic festivities & a terrific start to 2019.

Our Christmas opening times can be found below

Monday 24th December – Closing at 12pm
Tuesday 25th December – Closed
Wednesday 26th December – Closed
Thursday 27th December – Open
Friday 28th December – Open
Monday 31st December – Open
Tuesday 1st January – Closed
Reopen for business as usual January 2nd


OPEN DAY–  28th October 2018

It was great to see so many of you come along to our Open Day  despite the rain!

Huge thanks from all of us here at 181 Classic Motors to all our customers new and old who came down to our open day / classic meet today! It was a real pleasure to meet and chat to so many people about our passion and business! Fortunately, the rain didn’t put too much of a stop to proceedings and it was great to see such a variety of vehicles!
Plenty more pics and a video coming very soon! In the meantime, drop us a follow on our new Instagram page @181classicmotors
Thanks again! Malc & Team!

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Click below to download your MOT Checklist PDF to your Computer:


You ask…..and we deliver! 181 Classic Motors have designed a bespoke emergency breakdown kit for your classic vehicle. Click HERE for more details.