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I've tried the 10% ethanol blend and noticed a slight decrease in overall mpg. Not much of a difference, no more than a few mpg but certainly not worth the extra couple cents a gallon. Of course I'd give anything for the 85% blend seeing how cheap it is but you know...

Anyone else able to confirm the lower mpg?
 

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Hi D-Cubed and welcome to the forum :!:

Ethanol has less heat energy in each gallon than gasoline so its no surprise MPG is lower.

M85 won't work in a car not designed for it so don't even try it in your Insight (you'd be sorry)

HTH! :)
 

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I used to drive a lot of my vacations and found that I routinely got 2-3 mpg less when I put in 10% ethanol. I now avoid it like the plague.
 
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Hi Zipy:

___In many locales here in the Midwest, E10 is all that is available no matter where you live. We are even stuck with Winter blend, let alone summer blend RFG for 5 + months out of the year which sucks even more :( It is a hit but the 2 - 3 mpg isn’t that bad … Unless every ounce consumed is the difference between life and death! I know someone that thinks like that ;)

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:3faoc19l][email protected][/email:3faoc19l]
 

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I am taking delivery of a 2006 Civic hybrid on 2 Jan 2006, after my better half decided against the low-riding Insight.

In Nebraska, where we make a lot of it, ethanol is heavily promoted. Until I read several articles about the ethanol plants themselves using straight petroleum based fuels for their own energy needs, I too filled up with patriotic ethanol. I calculated mpg for two tankfulls of the 10% ethanol I had been using in a 2001 Honda Accord (6 cyl), my 1998 Chevy Lumina (former Avis rental), and my 1986 Ford E150 van (V-8). For the same vehicles and the same type of driving, on average after two tankfuls of regular, the the average mpg of this group of vehicles increased by 20%.

An earlier posting stated that the energy content of alcohol is less than straight petroleum based gasoline. My guess is that the energy content of alcohol is signficantly lower, given a 20% difference from a 10/90% blend in E10.

Doug Lynn
 

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Performance/mpg issues aside.

The really neat thing about ethanol is that it is carbon neutral. Essentially meaning that no more COx is release by using it for fuel, than would be released by just letting whatever plant it came from decay naturally. That and the decreased dependence on forign oil!

Brazil actually derives something like 90% of their fuel used for transportation from sugarcane=>ethanol completely eliminating their oil dependency (and a liter of pure ethanol there costs like $.30US = about $1.14/USgal). I mean even if it meant getting slightly lower performance if you could run pure ethanol in your tank and pay $1.14 a gal for it?

The problem with the way ethanol in the US is run is that they think if they can keep the price of ethanol just slightly below the cost of petrol gas they are doing fine (and they can't even do that!). That and the fact the oil companies literally won't alow car manufacturers to start selling pure ethanol (or flex fuel) vehicles here...
 

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Based on the 20% better gas mileage figures described in my previous post, for 10% ethanol to be competitive with 100% petroleum fuel, the price of ethanol should be approx 20% cheaper. At $2.00 a gallon for regular, 10/90 ethanol should be priced at $1.60 per gallon. In Nebraska, typically, 10/90 fuel is only about 5 cents cheaper and is often the same price. I do appreciate the argument that running ethanol helps eliminate gas line lock due to moisture in the tank, but I believe that occasionally running a full tank of ethanol during the winter time should be enough to keep moisture problems at bay. IMHO.
 

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Pure ethanol will disove certain components of the fuel system if the car is not designed to use it. Brazillian flex fuel vehicles use a small amount of gasoline to get the car started in cold weather and then switch to pure Ethanol. Swichung to an ethanol blend on an older car that has never used it can disolve sludge in the gas tank and plug up injectors leading to random engine stalling, at least that was my experience with an older CRX. Your mileage may vary! :D

Asside from that, I think Alcohol is the fuel of the future. If it can work in F1 it's fine by me. Besides, if climate change destroys the planet you can always drink the tank dry. :twisted:
 

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Yeah, I was speaking more toward the whole, what next after oil argument. I think ethanol and NEW vehicles specifically designed as flex fuel compatible could bridge the gap between now and when hydrogen becomes feasible.

Hadn't thought about drinking out of the tank during a worst case scenario event, you'd go blind (or is that methanol?) but at that point who cares, I bet it would be a great buzz, if it didn't eat your insides. :shock:

You can already get several flex fuel motorcycles here in the states, they will run on just about anything! Kerosene, Diesel, Jet fuel, Ethanol, Everclear...

Did anyone notice that apparently Honda is going to be releasing the natural gas civic to the general public in the states next year?
 

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I doubt you'll find an E85 compatible Honda any time soon. Because ethanol dissolves aluminum, flex-fuel engines seem to usually have cast iron heads. It's hard to find out for sure because the information on flex-fuel cars and trucks is pretty limited, but here's one source:
http://hillerford.com/Web%20Pages/resou ... trains.htm

I don't think Honda makes any engines with cast iron blocks, let alone heads...
 

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Both E85 and M85 are corrosive to Aluminum. E85 (ethanol) much less so (par. 4). Its the fuel delivery system that must be protected, tank, lines, pump and injectors. And M85 (methanol) unlike ethanol is also highly corrosive to many plastic and rubber compounds.

See:

http://www.nhtsa.gov/cars/rules/rulings ... ility1.htm

HTH! :)
 
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