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Report casts doubt on E15 use in cars & trucks {Extra Ethanol in Gasoline}
Fuel Fix ^ | May 16, 2012 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy

Posted on 05/16/2012 10:42:20 AM PDT by thackney

Automakers and the oil industry released a report today that casts doubt on the safety of gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol and shows that at least some engines running the fuel suffered damage during recent testing.

But ethanol backers and the Obama administration immediately countered that the study was fundamentally flawed, because it used engines with known durability issues” and didn’t include control group testing of the 10 percent ethanol blend that is now the standard at filling stations nationwide.

The dispute is the latest round in a long-running fight over the 15 percent ethanol fuel blend known as E15. A 2007 energy law mandated 36 billion gallons of renewable fuels be used by 2022, and the Environmental Protection Agency in 2010 approved the sale of E15 for model year 2001 and newer cars and light trucks. The agency did not clear E15 for use in older vehicles, boats or other devices, such as lawn and garden equipment.

In the new oil industry and automaker-funded study, the not-for-profit Coordinating Research Council tested eight specific engines (28 in all) from vehicles spanning model years 2001 through 2009. Researchers ran the engines for 500 hours under conditions representing about 100,000 miles of driving while fueling them with ethanol-free gasoline, the E15 blend containing 15 percent ethanol and a variety comprising 20 percent ethanol.

Two of the eight engines showed damage while running on E15, according to the study. Specifically, both of those auto engines showed leaking cylinders. Subsequent analysis by their original manufacturers revealed damage to intake valve seats, possibly causing the leakage.

One of the eight engines running E15 also failed emissions tests.

American Petroleum Institute President Jack Gerard said that the study results reveal millions of cars are at risk of damage from E15.

“Not all vehicles in the CRC tests showed engine damage, but engine types that did are found in millions of cars and light duty trucks now on America’s roads,” Gerard said. “We believe there’s at least as a minimum, 5 million that are subject to damage as a result of this rule, and we believe that is a conservative estimate.”

Automakers said the metallurgy and makeup of the engines that had valve leakage could foreshadow problems with similar vehicle engines, including some just now rolling off the assembly line.

Federal regulators and ethanol boosters panned the study. In a blog post, the Department of Energy, which conducted its own testing before the EPA approved E15 in 2010, provided a laundry list of criticisms:

None of the engines were tested with E10, which would have provided a better baseline for comparison, since it is the “de facto standard” representing more than 90 percent of gasoline available in the U.S. market. Instead, the vehicle engines were run on E20, E15 and an ethanol-free gasoline.

The engine test cycle, which was designed specifically for this study, was specifically designed to stress the engine valve train. Since the test method hasn’t been used in other studies, there’s no clear way to interpret the results, the Energy Department said.

The standard for measuring engine leakdown — and deeming it as having “failed” — is not a standard used by automakers and federal agencies for warranty claims or other uses.

The Energy Department also said the study included “Several engines already known to have durability issues, including one that was subject to a recall involving valve problems” when running on E10 and ethanol-free fuels. “It is no surprise that an engine having problems with traditional fuels might also fail with E15 or E20,” the Energy Department said.

Bob Dinneen, the president of the Renewable Fuels Association, characterized the study as misleading.

“By funding research using questionable testing protocols and illegal fuels, the results of this study are meaningless,” Dinneen said. The study results “only serve to further muddy the waters and shun the overwhelming desire of 75 percent of Americans for greater choice at the pump.”

TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: biofuels; corn; energy; ethanol; gasoline; mtba; ntsa; stfu
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To: mamelukesabre
small town people tend to simply things.

I remember the feds were VERY active in policing this aspect

81 posted on 05/16/2012 6:51:13 PM PDT by nascarnation
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To: nascarnation; Clay Moore

Don’t waste your time on this one.
He, she, it is just not worth it.

82 posted on 05/16/2012 6:58:02 PM PDT by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: LOC1

I look at it that every time I burn a tank of gasoline with ethonol (being forced to do so by the liberal asshat moonbat social degenerates) I am killing a “less fortunate” person in some underdeveloped country. Great...liberal schmucks afe making me a murderer. Just great!

83 posted on 05/16/2012 7:02:07 PM PDT by hal ogen (First Amendment or Reeducation Camp?)
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To: Repeal The 17th
My nearest “non-alcohol” gas station is a tank of gas away!

Just put the second fuel tank in the F150. Will pay for itself in a single trip! lol

84 posted on 05/16/2012 7:07:56 PM PDT by steve86 (Acerbic by nature not nurture TM)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

No.. the 2012 sliverado is flex fuel. anything from E0 to E85 can be ran though it. He should not have seen such a loss in MPG but I wonder if it had anything to do with elevation or stop and go traffic or perhaps a pump that stopped a few gallons short of “full”

85 posted on 05/16/2012 7:43:54 PM PDT by cableguymn
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To: cableguymn

I’d have to ask if this was a vehicle with an onboard fuel economy display.

86 posted on 05/16/2012 8:06:04 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Mitt! You're going to have to try harder than that to be "severely conservative" my friend.)
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To: steve86

Completely impractical for my Rokon RT-340 and it’s 60’s Sachs engine.

Here we have no real choice about the damn Ethanol, it’s mandated, and comes from Kali. refineries, where it’s also mandated.

Once I get the engine back in the frame I suppose I will have to buy race gas, at what, about $9.00 or more a gallon?

I might be able to get 100LL Avgas, not sure what issue that might create.
I think it will work OK since I will be adding two-stroke oil.

As to my cars, that’s a bigger issue.
I am NOT putting Ethanol into my vintage Webers!
The bike is only ridden locally, but the cars need to be able to go long distance.

E15 alone is enough reason to vote against Obammy, what has Romney said about this %@#&!, if anything?

87 posted on 05/16/2012 8:36:21 PM PDT by Loyal Sedition
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To: Loyal Sedition

Lots of people go 100LL and pump premium, mixed 50/50 with premix oil added; this will both give you plenty of octane, diluted ethanol to below harmful levels, and the pump additives which are needed for storage beyond a month or so. Plus it will start real easy at 20,000 feet!

88 posted on 05/16/2012 8:40:52 PM PDT by steve86 (Acerbic by nature not nurture TM)
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To: mamelukesabre

Why do I suspect you are too young to talk about this authoritatively?

I “was there”, Ethyl was in FACT tetra ethyl lead!

The lead increased octane and lubricated the valve faces.

Fuel without lead was called “White Gas” and used in camp stoves.

The only motor fuel to have any sort of alcohol in it was used in model airplanes and dragsters.
Drag racers mixed their own fuel, and added Nitro to suit their engine.

89 posted on 05/16/2012 8:43:51 PM PDT by Loyal Sedition
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To: Repeal The 17th

When I was a freshman in high school we had a local station that allowed you to “Dial” you octane.
Wish I could remember the name of the chain.

As I recall you could go from a low of about 85 (For a model T or A?) to a high of 101 (105?) for serious drivers.
I always ran the good stuff in my modified bike.

To this day I am severely PO’d to be forced to buy “Supreme” of only 92 octane, particularly at these prices.
At these prices we should be getting at least 100 octane!

90 posted on 05/16/2012 8:51:45 PM PDT by Loyal Sedition
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To: Loyal Sedition
Wish I could remember the name of the chain.


91 posted on 05/16/2012 8:54:58 PM PDT by okie01
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