Skip to comments.Hey, Feds, Take Your Ethanol Mandate and Shovel It!
Posted on 01/23/2018 7:10:46 AM PST by Kaslin
My back is sore from shoveling snow - and it's the federal government's fault. Maybe I'd better explain.
We've been getting lots of snow in Pittsburgh of late. When it snows, I need to clear two driveways: mine, which is 50 yards long, and my father's, which is almost as big.
Since my father is having trouble with his knees, I gave him my magnificent new Toro snowblower; it's a convenience for me to have it in his garage, so I can clear his driveway in fewer than 15 minutes.
I purchased an equally powerful, used snowblower to tend to my own driveway. It helps me clear my monster driveway in fewer than 30 minutes or so. On a snowy winter day, I am able to clear both driveways in less than an hour - assuming I can get the snowblowers running.
But neither would start during the first heavy snow of the year. And that's thanks to the federal government.
Why? Because of ethanol, an alcohol, made mostly from corn, that can be mixed with gasoline to fuel automobiles and other engines.
Ethanol-blended gas became a government requirement in 2005, as part of the Renewable Fuel Standard, which mandates that biofuels be added to transportation fuels in increasing amounts each year.
The concept appeared to be a winner at first.
Ethanol is something we can produce in abundance - reducing our dependence on foreign oil.
Ethanol burns cleaner than pure gasoline - that was supposed to be good for the environment.
But it didn't work out so well.
For starters, ethanol requires lots of fossil fuels to produce. Gas-burning tractors farm the fields that grow the corn. Lots of fuel is needed to fertilize, harvest and ship the corn.
What's worse, ethanol caused massive market shifts. Demand for corn increased significantly, driving up the cost of many items, such as popcorn, dairy products and beef (farm animals eat corn), and tequila (South American farmers ditched agave to grow corn, which caused an agave shortage).
Which brings us back to my snowblowers.
Marketplace reports that ethanol makes small engines run dangerously hot and can melt their many rubber components.
According to ATV Illustrated, "ethanol in fuel has a tendency to absorb water from the air and separate from the gasoline, sinking to the bottom of the gas tank, where it quickly degrades and creates gums, varnish and other insoluble debris that can plug fuel flow passages ... and begin corroding the tank and engine intake parts, as well."
Ethanol-blended gasoline degrades faster and more completely than pure gasoline. In the case of my snowblowers, severely degraded fuel from last season clogged the carburetors, injectors and filters so thoroughly, neither would start.
I know, now, that I should have shut off the gas valves and drained both snowblowers of gasoline when I was finished with them last season.
I know, now, that gasoline-stabilizer additives are essential for protecting my small engines from water absorption and separation.
I know I should have attempted to start both machines well before the first heavy snow covered both driveways.
But I also know that the federal government is the single biggest reason I have such a sore back from manually clearing two massive driveways.
To that end, it's time for Congress and the president to roll back the ethanol mandate - to correct its many unintended consequences. While they're at it, they'd better add one more item to the tax code: a deduction for the 200 bucks I had to spend to rebuild two lousy snowblower carburetors.
The factory maintenance manual for my Jeep warns that alcohol containing fuel should not be used except in emergency.
Adding the 10% alcohol in gasoline reduces my Honda’s fuel mileage from 30 mpg to 24 mpg. No savings what so ever.
School of hard knocks.
Any vehicle of mine that sits a long time gets non-alcohol gas - yes it costs more.
Any seasonal machine (generator) is stored with no gas and the carburetor run dry. Drained gas is put in the everyday cars.
And it never was cleaner, as you have to burn more of it for the same energy.
I run my stuff dry as well or use fuel stabilizer. I only use non-ethanol gas in my chainsaw and it absolutely loves it.
Not sure if it’s a perfect solution, but I run high-octane (93) fuel in all of my small-engines, including my lawn tractor, snow blower, pressure washer, ATVs and UTV and I add Sea Foam with every fill-up. Although I hate the idea of ethanol for all the reasons described above, it seems to be working well.
At first I thought you meant this kind.
But when I did a search I found sea foam motor treatment and this:
I didn't know there was such a thing
What an ignorant fool. I can’t decide whether his ignorance about science, mechanics, or logic is the most appalling, but only a dumbass would write such drivel and actually put his name on it.
A clue for the clueless: small engines that are not properly maintained will degrade and fail, regardless of the fuel used in them, as they did in dad and grandpa’s era.
I had a new gas blower that lasted exactly two uses thanks to ethanol.
I now buy the premixed ethanol free fuel for $6 a quart at Home Depot because of course the insane asylum in Annapolis, MD has rendered it illegal for dealers to sell completely ethanol free fuel at the pump.
I always used ethanol free gas in my boats after I was ripped off about $1K from boat repair folks fixing everything instead of just replacing my fuel lines. Put non ethanol gas in your car and watch your mileage miraculously go up dramatically. But gotta keep the farmers happy and voting the Right way:-)
Yep, I use it all the time. Just restored an old MG and it does wonders for clearing the junk out of old carbs. Comes in bottles and sprays and can be poured or sprayed (slowly!) directly into the carb throat, but use it outside; you’ll get black smoke until the carbon and other deposits are removed.
Having rebuilt three small engine carbs I no longer put any fuel containing gasahol in any small engine. I located a gas station that sells the ethanol free gas, use that, and get far better fuel consumption than before.
Buy this adder, run all the fuel out, etc.
Ethanol is all about money. Ethanol Lobbyist are paying our elected official off, ignore the damage.
Ethanol is the worst con game I have ever seen.
Now let the corn stalk lickers argue me wrong.
We have plenty of petroleum. We need the corn for animal feed. Animal feed is more valuable than ethanol. Stop the subsidies and mandates now.
Fuel ethanol subsidizes the production of high-protein animal feed.
Yeah ethanol laced gas is crap, but not draining the fuel tank and running the snowblower dry at the end of the season will gum things up regardless if you used non ethanol gas. Ditto for your lawn mower. I did this with my snow blower and mower for years and removed the spark plug adding a shot of WD-40 for good measure. My snow blower and lawn mower always started. Sorry Charlie.
no its not. it still has ethanol, and now your engine is not firing where it should because the octane is too high.
Care to chime in?
The claim that Ethanol is clean is based on carbon dioxide emissions. So unless you believe in global warming...you are funding the global warming scam.