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Author Topic: Ethanol Corrosion Back to Topics
raiste62000

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Gasbuddy

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Message Posted: Mar 20, 2013 3:21:25 PM

Anyone ever see the effects of ethanol corrosion?? Where and why does this happen to underground storage tanks???
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Apr 19, 2013 10:55:34 PM

I had experience with a fuel cell vehicle running on borax. But that doesn't make the technology viable or marketable, does it?

So we need alternatives that can offset all of the bad things about gasoline, but not bring any other bad offsets. There are technologies to make ethanol from non-food stocks, but the efficiencies suck more energy than is produced. Once that equation can be rebalanced to the positive side, ethanol is no more viable that NG, bio-diesel or plug-ins.
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Apr 14, 2013 11:14:53 PM

Goldseeker, I thought when they pulled out TEL they replaced with MMT. Maybe that was the culprit.
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Banjoe
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Message Posted: Apr 14, 2013 7:10:33 AM

goldseeker - not sure when the answer to the original question became moot but your experience with various engines/fuels do offer some confidence in the fuel technologies.
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Apr 14, 2013 6:43:38 AM

I am not really sure about my 20 year old mower as I have never had the head off. But as a former small engine mechanic I have had the heads off of numerous engines. Most of the Briggs and Straton engines are aluminum block with no sleeve. The industrial commercial versions do have steel sleeves.

20 years (21 after this season) is a long time to get service out of any mower, let alone an aluminum block.

When I first went to work in the 70s as a small engine mechanic Briggs had a wonderful cast iron block single cylinder motor that was used on different makes of garden tractors. It lasted forever. I can remember one man that had a 14 horse model that was 30 years old and pretty well worn out. We sent it out to the machine shop and had it bored out and fitted with an oversize piston. It was as good as new.

Last summer I was driving down the road and noticed an old Montgomery
Ward garden tractor with a for sale sign setting in a yard. So I turned around to check it out. It was a 1975 model with a 16 horse cast iron Briggs and still in good running condition. By the way when I serviced small engines I worked for Montgomery Wards, so I knew this model like the back of my hand. I knew that it was nearly indestructible. Everything, from the motor, to the hydrostatic pump driven by a drive shaft, to a heavy duty mower deck with cast iron pulleys and spindles was intact. I wanted it badly even though I had a new garden tractor. The guy was too high so I passed for a few days and someone else bought it.

That motor was replaced with a twin cylinder aluminum block around 1981. That motor is quieter and runs smoother but will never hold up like that cast iron Briggs did. That older motor was also easier to service.

Back when I was a small engine mechanic there was no ethanol in this area, however along about 1978 lead was banned from gasoline. As I recall lead was used as an octane booster. I am not sure was the gasoline industry added to boost the octane at that time, but I can assure you that whatever it was caused trouble with fuel lines in many of our chainsaws. Even my own personal saw had a line that melted into a gooey mess. This was easily fixed by replacing the fuel line with a neoprene line. Ethanol never showed up around here until about 15 years ago, so I know that ethanol did not cause the problem.



[Edited by: goldseeker at 4/14/2013 6:47:29 AM EST]
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 3:29:23 PM

Goldseeker, I will agree with you on the 'brain trust' we call the EPA.

As far as alum. small engine blocks...again, check to see if it has a sleeve. That, and a steel piston, would explain the longevity. Not that ethanol had everything to do with the long life. I just put away a 24 year old B&S mower. Yup, Steel on steel and only recently used E10. Rings were shot and the head cracked but 25 years was good I thought.

And I thought they outlawed steel tanks and replaced with one of the many varieties of plastic. My recycle bins hold at least 4 types of plastic every day. Ever put gasoline in a cottage cheese container? That would be a #5 Poly-Prop type.
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tropicalmn
Veteran Author Minnesota

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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 12:55:42 PM

There were probably thousands of single wall underground steel tanks that had only contained gas that leaked-failed do to corrosion in this country.
Did they rust from outside in or inside out or combination? I personally haven't seen in using E10 anything unusual in above ground steel tanks.
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 12:40:25 PM

"So the consensus is that ethanol doesn't dissolve underground steel tanks then?"

I have not seen a steel tank installed for over 30 years. There are only a small percentage in use, and most are at small ma & pa convenience stores. Most Americans buy little or no gas there.

I have been on sites that have upgraded and replaced steel tanks with modern tanks. In nearly ever case there was severe rust and corrosion associated with the old tanks. And I witnessed this long before ethanol blends came to this area.

So actually this is a moot issue.
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tropicalmn
Veteran Author Minnesota

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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 12:13:56 PM

"Lots of misinformation out there... it is ok to say "I don't know"... instead of running on with guesses, opinions and hearsay."

Which means you'll live by your own words and stop repeating
"corn is for food not fuel" Field corn is primarily for feed use.When corn is used in ethanol production you get both fuel & a high protein feed ingredient. While corn is used in many food products the total overall amount is small compared to what is produced. Every year there is a carryover of corn(more produced than what is used for all purposes).
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ggg452
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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 11:17:23 AM

Lots of misinformation out there... it is ok to say "I don't know"... instead of running on with guesses, opinions and hearsay.
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Banjoe
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 7:18:29 AM

So the consensus is that ethanol doesn't dissolve underground steel tanks then?
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 1:48:55 AM

Aluminum blocks? Small engines have been using aluminum blocks for over 30 years. It is truly amazing that my 20 year old mower that uses nothing but ethanol blends has not corroded away. Sheesh!

[Edited by: goldseeker at 4/13/2013 1:50:41 AM EST]
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jack4141
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Message Posted: Apr 13, 2013 1:40:37 AM

I agree.
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krzysiek_ck
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Apr 12, 2013 10:41:45 AM

One more chart.

Chemical Resistance of Plastics

[Edited by: krzysiek_ck at 4/12/2013 10:42:25 AM EST]
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krzysiek_ck
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Apr 12, 2013 10:35:13 AM

Shockjock1961, Educate yourself before running your mouth.

Chemical Resistance of Plastics

ethanol up to 95%
LD-PE - partially resistant
HD-PE - unknown
PP - excellent
PS - excellent
PC - non-resistant

Compared to common chemicals used in gasoline

benzene
LD-PE - non-resistant
HD-PE - partially resistant (20 C), non-resistant (60 C)
PP - partially resistant (20 C), non-resistant (60 C)
PS - non-resistant
PC - non-resistant

toluene
LD-PE - non-resistant
HD-PE - partially resistant (20 C), non-resistant (60 C)
PP - partially resistant (20 C), non-resistant (60 C)
PS - non-resistant
PC - non-resistant

xylene
LD-PE - non-resistant
HD-PE - non-resistant
PP - non-resistant
PS - non-resistant
PC - non-resistant

[Edited by: krzysiek_ck at 4/12/2013 10:39:15 AM EST]
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Shockjock1961
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Message Posted: Apr 12, 2013 10:14:52 AM

"Are you aware tht ethanol is sold in plastic containers"

You are aware that there are different types of plastic and that these different types have different reactions to chemicals?

What am I saying? Of course you dont!
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SoylentGrain
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Message Posted: Apr 12, 2013 7:15:34 AM

Well put, Goldseeker.
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Apr 12, 2013 2:40:37 AM

"Even the EPA was putting out warnings about UGT's that are not capable of ethanol storage. All the metal parts and plastic seals that might swell past spec when in contact with ethanol. Add to that the water aspect and you have a potential leaker."

This is all BS, as the EPA is nothing more than a worthless government agency that is not an authority on anything.
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SoylentGrain
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Message Posted: Apr 11, 2013 10:53:48 PM

"All the metal parts and plastic seals that might swell past spec when in contact with ethanol. "

Are you aware tht ethanol is sold in plastic containers.
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tdioiler
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Message Posted: Apr 11, 2013 10:06:01 PM

Even the EPA was putting out warnings about UGT's that are not capable of ethanol storage. All the metal parts and plastic seals that might swell past spec when in contact with ethanol. Add to that the water aspect and you have a potential leaker.
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tdioiler
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Message Posted: Apr 8, 2013 8:36:18 PM

Like I said, steel sleeved aluminum block; "For 2014, all three engines for the Silverado and Sierra use lightweight aluminum blocks with cast-in iron cylinder liners."

media.gm.com/media/us/en/gmc/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2012/Dec/1213_ecotec3-engines.html

Big change here was the top-end design changes with re-used block from other small block designs to improve on proven reliability. I just hope AFM performs better than the earlier versions.
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SoylentGrain
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Message Posted: Apr 7, 2013 11:58:49 AM

Like I said, aluminum blocks.

http://news.pickuptrucks/2012/12/new-silveradosierra-engines-leap-forward.html

[Edited by: SoylentGrain at 4/7/2013 12:01:29 PM EST]
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Apr 7, 2013 10:35:38 AM

Soylent, I would like to know what vehicle you know of that still uses aluminum blocks and piston? Haven't seen those, at all except in small engines.

Aluminum pistons break too easy under vehicle weights and stress. So if there is some, it is a alloy mix to overcome that issue. But the rings have to be adjusted as well for the iron/aluminum electrolysis issues.

As for blocks, the block is aluminum, but the combustion chamber is sleeved to protect the soft block material. And throttle bodies are now coated (if aluminum still) to protect them from ethanol. Been that way since mid-80's for many OEM's. Hence the issue of E10 on older vehicles.

But there are many other parts affected you didn't start listing. Honda has been using metal gas tanks to improve emissions. And plastic has to be multi-layered to reduce permeability and protect from ethanol absorption.
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SoylentGrain
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Message Posted: Apr 7, 2013 9:12:40 AM

Yet, throttle bodies, blocks, heads, and pistons are made from aluminum. After 11 years of using E85, my FFV's engine should be a pile of dust.
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Shockjock1961
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Message Posted: Apr 3, 2013 8:52:24 PM

"E85 ethanol is used in engines modified to accept higher concentrations of ethanol. Such flexible-fuel vehicles (FFV) are designed to run on any mixture of gasoline or ethanol with up to 85% ethanol by volume. There are a few major differences between FFVs and non-FFVs. One is the elimination of bare magnesium, aluminum, and rubber parts in the fuel system. Another is that fuel pumps must be capable of operating with electrically conductive ethanol instead of non-conducting dielectric gasoline fuel. Fuel-injection control systems have a wider range of pulse widths to inject approximately 34% more fuel. Stainless steel fuel lines, sometimes lined with plastic, and stainless-steel fuel tanks in place of terne fuel tanks are used. In some cases, FFVs use acid-neutralizing motor oil. For vehicles with fuel-tank-mounted fuel pumps, additional differences to prevent arcing, as well as flame arrestors positioned in the tank's fill pipe, are also sometimes used."
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Apr 3, 2013 8:51:47 PM

So Silverstreaker, If you have a reply, please include something other than you words to back you statement up.

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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Apr 3, 2013 8:50:38 PM

SS, here's some proof for you from the Moss Motors group.

"Specific Parts Affected by Ethanol

Fuel tank: Ethanol could dislodge sediment and deposits in older gas tanks and fuel lines. Loose debris in the fuel could clog the fuel filter, or cause engine flooding if the carburetor float valve sticks.

Fuel pump: Rubber diaphragms inside the fuel pump may have problems with ethanol exposure.

Carburetor float valve: Float valve needles on early cars were brass, and these were replaced with plastic needles or brass needles with Viton (a specific type of rubber) tips. Ethanol can cause the plastic needles to swell up and stick either open or shut, which causes either massive flooding or starves the carburetor for fuel. Some owners have resorted to shaving down the plastic needle to get it to ride smoothly and seat properly. Instead, you can install an all-brass needle and seat, or a Vitontipped needle if available for your car model, which are not affected by lower levels of ethanol.

Carburetor floats: The Zenith-Stromberg floats found specifically/ only in the TR4 and 4A made of foam covered with a skin may deteriorate when exposed to ethanol. Other plastic floats, like those used by SU, may also be affected.

Hoses: Ethanol could dry out or deteriorate rubber hoses.

Seals: Ethanol could shrink, swell or deteriorate seals, depending on the material.

Gaskets: Ethanol may deteriorate the rubber in rubber/cork composite gaskets. Fiber washers and gaskets are not affected.

Aluminum and aluminum alloy parts: Aluminum and alloys fare fine with 10 percent ethanol, but are damaged by 25 percent ethanol."
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SilverStreaker
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Message Posted: Mar 29, 2013 2:39:01 AM

tdioiler claims "I would have to say those technical specialist who tore apart the engine and found damage to the parts with E-10 in the tank."
Where's your proof, buddy ??

and "hired to test various blends on engines with 10% increments of ethanol. At E-20, found nothing to concern with but some ring cracks that could not be conclusive to E usage. But at 30% and higher crap started falling apart. Buy 60% the engine ran rough at best and had very convincing bearing issues with top seal failures, fuel-pump degradation, and line corrosion."
Where's your proof, buddy ??
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Mar 28, 2013 10:24:28 PM

Silver streak, without using your neighbors or 200 or so cars you claim run great on higher E levels than 5%, what scientific studies do you have from reputable research that is unbiased can you state?

Where's your proof, buddy ??
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Mar 28, 2013 10:21:37 PM

Goldseeker, I would have to say those technical specialist who tore apart the engine and found damage to the parts with E-10 in the tank.

Pretty convincing argument what the cause was. After that I didn't use any E supplement fuel until I received several part replacements.

Turn clocks forward 5 years and hired to test various blends on engines with 10% increments of ethanol. At E-20, found nothing to concern with but some ring cracks that could not be conclusive to E usage. But at 30% and higher crap started falling apart. Buy 60% the engine ran rough at best and had very convincing bearing issues with top seal failures, fuel-pump degradation, and line corrosion.

So yeah, I saw what could happen with high e-blends. So what ever you scientific studies (???) tell you, I've seen the exact opposite.

And no two engines are built exactly the same, so you are rolling the dice on what would happen with your car. Until the fuel providers and EPA want to fund my vehicle damages the OEM rejects due to fuel usage, I'm not interested in ethanol.
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jacksfan
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Message Posted: Mar 28, 2013 10:05:46 AM

"Let's see if your personal experience matches your articles."

Heck, let's see if shocky can meet the demands he places on others. Have you got "a shred of proof," shocky, or is this just just more of your hypocrisy?
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krzysiek_ck
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Mar 28, 2013 8:32:10 AM

Shockjock1961, I know you have used E10 for years. How many ethanol related car failures can you share with us? Let's see if your personal experience matches your articles.
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Shockjock1961
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Message Posted: Mar 27, 2013 12:05:27 PM

Can E15 Gasoline Really Damage Your Engine?
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Shockjock1961
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Message Posted: Mar 27, 2013 11:58:52 AM

" I've used high ethanol blends in two non-FFVs for many years with absolutely no ethanol related performance or maintenance issues."

You have claimed many things SS, without a shred of proof. Let's see if you can support this recent claim.
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goldseeker
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Message Posted: Mar 25, 2013 3:41:10 AM

tdioiler claims "My 1998 Honda didn't due well on E-10. Some plastic in the induction system contaminated the engine. Had to replace the entire top end on my own dime."

And what makes you think that ethanol caused that problem. Ethanol has an excellent compatibility rating with most plastics, whereas other common components of gasoline such as benzene, toluene, and xylene do not.
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SilverStreaker
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2013 11:59:29 PM

tdioiler claims "My 1998 Honda didn't due well on E-10. Some plastic in the induction system contaminated the engine. Had to replace the entire top end on my own dime since Honda blamed wrong fuel."
You have claimed many things without a shred of proof. Let's see if you can support any of this recent claim.
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tdioiler
All-Star Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2013 10:56:48 PM

My 1998 Honda didn't due well on E-10. Some plastic in the induction system contaminated the engine. Had to replace the entire top end on my own dime since Honda blamed wrong fuel.

So silverstreak, can I send you my $1,800 bill since you have "...used high ethanol blends in two non-FFVs for many years with absolutely no ethanol related performance or maintenance issues."

Put your money where it counts.
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SilverStreaker
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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2013 12:20:43 PM

EvergreenON claims "Ethanol and lower octane gasoline will burn out the engine"
Ethanol provides higher octane, genius. I've used high ethanol blends in two non-FFVs for many years with absolutely no ethanol related performance or maintenance issues. What's your experience?
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EvergreenON
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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2013 9:03:37 AM

Ethanol and lower octane gasoline will burn out the engine
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2013 4:53:24 AM

My 1987 Ranger runs just fine on it.
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SilverStreaker
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Mar 23, 2013 6:37:51 PM

OceanArcher says "Newer cars were designed with ethanol in mind, and the tanks/lines/engines, etc will stand up to it. Older cars weren't that lucky -- and have problems"
How old do you mean? I ran my 2000 Ford Windstar on over 55% ethanol with no ethanol related performance or maintenance issues. The Ford Model T could run on ethanol or gasoline.
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OceanArcher
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Message Posted: Mar 23, 2013 11:07:20 AM

Newer cars were designed with ethanol in mind, and the tanks/lines/engines, etc will stand up to it. Older cars weren't that lucky -- and have problems
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raiste62000
Veteran Author Gasbuddy

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Message Posted: Mar 22, 2013 9:03:54 AM

Again, thanks for all the input people!!!
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EvergreenON
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Mar 22, 2013 6:04:31 AM

With Ethanol my car is making 4 to 5 miles less par g.
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 22, 2013 3:46:46 AM

Funny, my chainsaw, two garden tractors, weedeater, and snowblower all have plastic tanks. No corrosion there. I do have a wood splitter with a steel tank, and there is no corrosion there.

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borsht
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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2013 11:44:49 PM

The state of Florida has issued a memorandum on storage of E10 and E85.
It causes significant rust in steel tanks.
http://www.dep.state.fl.us/waste/quick_topics/publications/pss/tanks/ethanol/EthanolStorageinUSTandAST.pdf
All my small engines with steel tanks are rusting inside, This didn’t happen with regular gas in Washington state, which just went to gasohol in the last couple of years.
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SilverStreaker
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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2013 10:51:05 AM

"On our diesel, there is no corrosion at all, but all the E10 unleaded tanks all the pumping equipment IS rusting out. THis proves a point on it being just ethanol based fuels"
No, it only proves that you don't see corrosion on your diesel tank. How do you know this wouldn't happpen with ethanol free gasoline?
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raiste62000
Veteran Author Gasbuddy

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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2013 8:12:14 AM

ITs mainly with the pump housing on top of the tank. Manholes are opened daily for inspections. On our diesel, there is no corrosion at all, but all the E10 unleaded tanks all the pumping equipment IS rusting out. THis proves a point on it being just ethanol based fuels...... Thanks for the info my friends!!! Keep on pumpin!!
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MertieMan
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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2013 5:15:48 AM

I wouldn't think that this would be happening in underground storage tanks now since the majority of them are fiberglas.
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2013 3:02:00 AM

"Where and why does this happen to underground storage tanks???"

Actually most storage tanks are now made of some type of plastic.
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goldseeker
Champion Author West Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2013 3:00:28 AM

This is nothing more than BS from the oil patch.

It is a well known fact that ethanol producers add corrosion inhibitors to ethanol to limit corrosion. It is also a well known fact that refiners add corrosion inibitors to gasoline. And anti-freeze also has corrosion inhibitors added.
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