AUTHORIZED DEALER
SYNZILLA.com LLC
Michael Mathe
Save Time. Order Online.
Two Ways to Save

AMSOIL TECH BLOG

06/01/2012

Its Impact Will Be Felt Differently by Motorists and Powersports Enthusiasts

As I write this month's Tech Talk, the U.S. nationwide average price for a gallon of gasoline is $3.85. On May 8, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) released a revised forecast for gas prices during the summer driving season (April through September) that predicts the average price will drop to $3.79. That's good news for all of us, whether filling up for the daily commute or planning a longer road trip. Regardless of what vehicle you drive, it's likely that maximizing fuel economy and extending engine life are high priorities. In fact, a 2011 survey by the Consumer Reports National Research Center found the "age of the average car driven by respondents has increased to eight years," with 23 percent of motorists surveyed driving cars from the 1990s. And for those planning on purchasing a new or newer model, 62 percent expected their next vehicles to have better fuel economy than their previous models.

Motorists are demanding more from newer vehicles and also want their current vehicles to last longer, but new government mandates might make achieving higher efficiencies more difficult.

In April 2012, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the sale of E15 (15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline) for cars and trucks manufactured in 2001 or later. This extended by six years a 2010 waiver permitting the use of motor gasoline blends containing up to 15 percent ethanol in 2007 and newer vehicles. All other gas-powered engines, such as those on boats, snowmobiles, lawn mowers, motorcycles and off-road vehicles, are prohibited from using E15. This means that the current E10 (10 percent ethanol/90 percent gasoline) blended fuel, sold at more than 90 percent of service stations nationwide, remains the de facto choice for owners of model year 2000 and older vehicles and other gas-powered engines. The exception to this being flex-fuel vehicles compatible with E85 (85 percent ethanol/15 percent gasoline).

Automakers have resisted the new E15 ruling, arguing that their vehicles - new and old - aren't designed to accommodate gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol. Service station owners have concerns about potential liability issues arising from consumers using the wrong ethanol blend and are worried about the costs of retrofitting gas pumps or installing new ones to make E15 available.

While the future of E15 is uncertain, ethanol-blended fuels are here to stay. Ethanol has been used for decades as a gasoline additive because it burns cleaner than gasoline. The downside to ethanol is its fuel economy and perfor¬mance. Ethanol produces less energy than gasoline. According to the EIA, "A gallon of ethanol has only two-thirds the energy of a gallon of conventional gasoline, and the number of miles traveled by a given vehicle per gallon of fuel is directly proportional to the energy contained in the fuel." In addition, studies have shown fuel systems containing plastic or rubber components can be damaged by ethanol exposure. There are also problems at the molecular level. Ethanol and gasoline do not form chemical bonds and ethanol is highly attracted to water. Even small amounts of water entering the fuel supply can break the weak ethanol-to-water bond and separate (phase separation). This suspension falls to the bottom of the fuel tank and can increase engine temperatures and cause engine damage. Less energy per gallon and phase separation are just two of the problems inherent with ethanol-blended gasoline. Smaller engines face additional maintenance and performance issues.

Because the widely available E10 can start degrading in just 30 days, the shorter shelf life of ethanol-blended gasoline vs. pure gasoline is another potential problem for small-engine operation. With equipment such as motorcycles, ATVs, boats and other less frequently used tools like chainsaws and leaf blowers, fuel may sit in the tank for a month or much longer between starts. During this time gasoline absorbs water, which leads to fuel breakdown. As gasoline degrades, gums and varnish can clog carburetors, fuel injectors and fuel filters. The result is decreased starting performance and drivability issues. Most drivers fuel their passenger vehicles more frequently than every 30 days, so gasoline breakdown issues are less common in autos and trucks. Additionally, many newer vehicles have computer sensors that make adjustments for high ethanol content, but the majority of small engines lack such technology. Fortunately for powersports enthusiasts, there are solutions to this long-term problem.

AMSOIL Quickshot Fuel Additive is designed to keep water dispersed and helps combat problems associated with ethanol-blended fuel. It also cleans deposit build-up in fuel systems and combustion chamber components. This means better performance and reduced impact from ethanol-blended fuels. We all value our free time; engines need to start on command when we get a sliver of time to get out and go. Published, AMSOIL Magazine 06/12.

SYNZILLA.com LLC is a large nationwide Dealer of AMSOIL Synthetic Lubricants and is now expanding into your area and surrounding states. If you have a business or are an individual with several vehicles, AMSOIL has several options available that may allow you to Purchase AMSOIL Products at Wholesale Prices. We can show you how to save money and extend equipment life with AMSOIL Synthetic Motor Oils, Lubricants, Filters and Fuel Additives. Please visit the AMSOIL Online Store for more information and to purchase AMSOIL Products.

SAVE APPROXIMATELY 25% ON EVERY ORDER
Register as an AMSOIL Preferred Customer and save approximately 
25% on all AMSOIL products.
- FREE subscription to AMSOIL Magazine
- Premium protection and performance for all of your vehicles and equipment

- Access to the entire AMSOIL product line at wholesale prices

POPULAR LINKS