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With move to legislate 15% content in gas, older vehicles will need more care

Generally, vehicles from the 1980s and older could be at risk. Higher-ethanol fuels may also pose problems for small engines, such as those on lawn mowers …

A proposed regulation to increase the amount of ethanol in gasoline shouldn't be a problem for those with newer cars, but owners of classic cars and hotrods could potentially face issues with vehicles that were never meant to use it.

Increased ethanol in gasoline is bad news for some owners.

"Everybody's got an opinion, but I've noticed that if (fuel with ethanol) is left in for a while, say a hot summer over two months, it isn't even fuel that'll burn," says Peter Fawcett, president of the Fawcett Motor Carriage Company restoration shop in Whitby, Ont.

"I have a carburetor on my car (a 1904 Ford) and it glued itself together, like I put epoxy in it."

The new recommendation, which if passed could take effect in early 2018, would increase the maximum amount of ethanol in gasoline in Canada to 15 per cent, up from the current 10 per cent. This would follow a similar decision approved by the Environmental Protection Agency in the United States in 2010 to help reduce carbon emissions.

Ethanol is considered a renewable fuel because it's made from plant material, which in Canada and the U.S. is primarily corn. It burns cleaner than gasoline, and has a high octane rating. But ethanol is corrosive, it has less energy than gasoline and therefore gets poorer mileage, and it is hygroscopic, meaning it readily absorbs moisture.

The current 10 per cent ethanol mandate, and the proposed 15 per cent, is across each fuel company's blends, based on its volume produced or imported. The mixture is labelled by its renewable content, and so an E10 blend is 10 per cent ethanol with 90 per cent gasoline. Higher-ethanol blends, such as E85 (85 per cent ethanol) can only be used in modern vehicles specifically rated as "flex-fuel," as they have higher-capacity fuel pumps and injectors, and other components, designed for it. Most auto manufacturers currently recommend nothing higher than E15, the proposed blend, in newer vehicles.

But owners of classic cars can face challenges that aren't an issue with newer models. Older vehicles generally aren't driven much, increasing the possibility that the fuel can draw moisture as it sits in the tank and lines, which in turn can lead to rust. They may also have cork gaskets or fuel floats, which Fawcett says can be damaged by ethanol, or rubber seals that aren't compatible.

Generally, vehicles from the 1980s and older could be at risk. Higher-ethanol fuels may also pose problems for small engines, such as those on lawn mowers, trimmers, chainsaws and outboard motors.

Escaping ethanol at the pump isn't easy. Because the standard applies across all gasoline the company produces, the amount in each blend can vary, as long as it's a maximum of 10 per cent ethanol or, under the proposed law, 15 per cent.

Across Canada, Shell's V-Power NiTRO+ is pure gasoline, while a few companies sell ethanol-free premium gas in specific markets. Owners can also check websites such as pure-gas.org, which maintains an updated list of stations in Canada and the United States offering ethanol-free blends.

In a 2007 study commissioned by antique-auto insurance company Hagerty, performed by Kettering University's Advanced Engine Research Laboratory in Michigan, E10 fuel had no effect on the performance of a carburetor from a 1962 MGA over 3,000 hours of testing.

However, there were indications that the fuel could soften seals and gaskets, and corrosion was found in the steel drum that held the fuel. The recommendation was that fuel systems on cars built before 1986 should be upgraded with ethanol-compatible replacement parts, including fuel pump diaphragms, rubber lines and seals, and carburetor floats.

Under the proposed Canadian amendment, gasoline blends will contain a maximum of 50 per cent more ethanol content than the fuel tested in the study.

Ethanol is a solvent, and car owners may have to replace their fuel filters more frequently to avoid them plugging up with loosened dirt and deposits. Carburetors may also have to be adjusted for ethanol's lower energy, so the engine doesn't run too lean.

When storing a car over winter, Fawcett recommends draining the fuel completely, filling the tank with ethanol-free fuel if it's available, or adding ethanol-compatible fuel stabilizer. Fogging oil sprayed into the carburetor can also help avoid any problems with condensation.

Lawn mowers and other small engines should also be drained of fuel, and containers of gas used for them shouldn't be stored for more than a couple of months. Ethanol fuel goes stale quickly, and buying smaller amounts more frequently can help ensure your supply is fresh.
 

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Oh dear God; the alky-heads are going to come for you . . .
 

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NOT ALKIE.......CORN :badgrin:....alkie makes you walk funny, not ruin motor:22yikes:
 

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Crapanol is nothing more than Governmental back alley lobbying and serves no gain what so ever, despite the typical propaganda.

But I have already spent too much time providing facts about the scam, so I will just say, that sucks Bubba... Baa baa

Automotive parking light Vehicle Hood Automotive lighting Cartoon
 

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Sure hope this thread doesn't turn into political BS now...new rules, might get banned:doubt:
 

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We all know this reaaaally sucks but they are going to do what they are going to do. The proper thing to do would be to give us the option to buy E15 or E10, but I don't know if that will happen. They seem hell bent on shoving E15 down our throats. We will see, it's not a done deal yet.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have NEVER come across a station that sells E85 fuel. Now I haven't been everywhere but just where were they selling it anyway? It seems to me that the vehicle manufacturers got some kickback from the governments of the day to produce them. The badge on the back proudly stated E85 Flex Fuel but why it never got off the ground is anyone's guess.
 

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I have NEVER come across a station that sells E85 fuel. Now I haven't been everywhere but just where were they selling it anyway? It seems to me that the vehicle manufacturers got some kickback from the governments of the day to produce them. The badge on the back proudly stated E85 Flex Fuel but why it never got off the ground is anyone's guess.
I live out in bum fuq and the local pumps all say E10,. But when I hook into the diagnostic port on my truck and view the data I'm at 16% alcohol. Thankfully there is the option for ethanol free fuel at the one gas station here so the bike should be fine for awhile.

This whole flex fuel / ethanol thing is nothing more than a scam to get some politicians friend rich.
 

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I have NEVER come across a station that sells E85 fuel. Now I haven't been everywhere but just where were they selling it anyway? It seems to me that the vehicle manufacturers got some kickback from the governments of the day to produce them. The badge on the back proudly stated E85 Flex Fuel but why it never got off the ground is anyone's guess.
That is because Ethanol is :bsflag:
 

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I have NEVER come across a station that sells E85 fuel. Now I haven't been everywhere but just where were they selling it anyway? It seems to me that the vehicle manufacturers got some kickback from the governments of the day to produce them. The badge on the back proudly stated E85 Flex Fuel but why it never got off the ground is anyone's guess.
Many stations down here have a pump just for E85. I've never seen it used.

Other pumps all have a sticker saying it may contain up to 10% ethanol.
 

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But Ethanol was born from political BS.... If they really want green "go juice" it will be from Liquid Hydrogen and fuel cells...
In Michigan the best place to find is in low income areas....another reason they SAY it's good....save gov't $$$ when EBT/SNAP card used:censored: (none in Houghton Lake, MI...a RESORT town, hmmmm)
 
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