The gum content can be used to judge the quality of various products. The amount of gum indicates the condition of the sample at the time of the measurement. Large quantities of gum are an indicator for the contamination of fuel caused by higher boiling oils or particles. Since the gum content can change according to the age of the fuel and the exposure to oxygen, the reported content is only true at the time of measurement.
Generally, the gum content reflects inappropriate production processes and poor fuel handling in the refinery or the storage facility. The amount of gum should be as low as possible since the use of fuels with high gum contents can lead to deposits in induction systems or cause intake valves and fuel injectors to stick.