Breaking News: Little Local TV Station Goes Boldly Where Networks DARE NOT TREAD

Declares “ETHANOL SUCKS FOR ENGINES and the new EPA regs will MAKE IT WORSE“. (Oh, yes they did!)
Watch the report. It’s a good one.

When you pump gas into your car… it probably never crosses your mind that you could be damaging your engine.

But mechanics say the 10 % of ethanol that’s added to our gas can cause big problems.

Now the federal government has approved increasing that level to 15 % for vehicles made after 2001.

That could result in a lot more car repairs. This is what the inside of a steel fuel line looks like after just a few years of gasoline with 10 % ethanol running through it.

Now the federal government says 15 percent ethanol is ok.
But mechanics here say it will cause more engine trouble.

…Since ethanol is made from corn food experts warn that increased corn production to make more ethanol will also result in higher food prices.
Ethanol Bad for Engines

26 Responses to “Breaking News: Little Local TV Station Goes Boldly Where Networks DARE NOT TREAD”

  1. Rob says:

    Mechanics have been saying that for years, ths. They also objected to radial tires, disk brakes, and anything computerized.

    BG Products is not a reliable source for anything. They sell their chemical products to just about every shop in America and they are all about sales. An OEM engine specialist told me once that the best you can hope for from chemical performance products is that they do nothing at all. Today’s engines are built to use all types of gasolines. Everything else is basically a contaminant.

  2. tree hugging sister says:

    Today’s engines are built to use all types of gasolines.

    Which doesn’t help us a lick, with cars from ’87, ’92 and ’96…

  3. Larry says:

    My Mustang has a tag on it specifically saying NO E85. I guess manufacturers are in on the scheme also?
    Corn is for food, not for fuel.

  4. Rob says:

    Can’t dispute that, ths. Just imagine a few years from now when electric cars and hybrids take over and gas stations start disappearing.

    They’re not in on it, Larry. They’re just adapting to it. Muscle cars are really going to get harder and harder to maintain. What year is yours that says “NO E85”? That’s almost like “NOT machine washable”, isn’t it?

  5. major dad says:

    It tears up engines built prior to 2004 or so and really hits marine engines and small engines e.g. lawnmowers. Keep dreaming on the electrics Rob, okay for a city guy driving just a few miles but suck for anything else. Battery technology just isn’t there yet,like you said in a few years but not yet. Can you see the problem of an apartment complex trying to charge up a bunch a electric cars or say people that have street parking especially since 220V is the preferred method of charging.

  6. JeffS says:

    Rob, there are also issues with the effects of alcohol on some seals, even in more modern engines.

    And that’s ignoring the very real impact biofuels have on food prices. And food availability, especially in third world countries that grow “food” for biofuels.

    Plus, I’ve never really understood how diluting gasoline with a less flammable liquid improves anything, other than a small number of pocket books.

    Yeah, we may have to live with this crap, but we don’t have to accept it blindly.

  7. Rob says:

    That’s what makes the world go round, MD. Electric cars are not here yet in any significant numbers but they’re coming and everything affected by it will have to adapt or die. They are much closer than you think, too.

  8. Rob says:

    That “alcohol on some seals” theory has been around forever, Jeff. Not sure how valid it is or ever has been. Heat, age, and fuel system contamination are the most common culprits of seal failure.

  9. JeffS says:

    The infrastructure is not in place to support electrical cars. People bought them because of the “environmental” or “cool” factors. But they are limited in endurance, and you need a place to recharge them. So people who have to commute any serious distance won’t buy them.

    It’s an extreme example, but the BBC drove an electric car from London to Scotland. The results? “It took 4 days, some serious thermal underwear, and copious amounts of waiting.” A stagecoach used to make the trip in TWO days. Some improvement.

    Hybrids are somewhat better, but they aren’t the economic boom manufacturers (as prodded by the Federal goobermint) hoped for.

    So America will use more electrical cars only we are REQUIRED to do so. Mostly likely, by government fiat.

  10. Rob says:

    That’s now, Jeffs. Like an earlier comment I made here. You could probably find footage of a guy jumping up and pulling on a propeller to start a plane engine. Things change … quite rapidly in some cases, especially when there’s a push. There are a lot of factors driving us in that direction. $5, $6, $7 gasoline is the leader of the push, not government.

  11. Rob says:

    Ahem, Jeffs. From the very first link:

    “I race methanol burning sprintcars so this is right up my can convert a gas engine to methanol by simply drilling out what ever jets the fuel mixture,allowing it more fuel.probly about 20% more fuel will be only drys out o-rings and gaskets over a long period of time,but you can buy a top end lube to mix with the methanol.”

    The key phrase: “Over a long period of time.” Kinda like the cyclamates that can cause cancer in people who drink 500 sodas a day.

  12. JeffS says:

    Rob, I don’t agree that you can use methanol as a fuel. That’s an OLD idea.

    Not to mention… many people have the ability to modify engines? I get your point, but it supports the fact that internal combustion engines may not do so well with gasohol.

    And I’m pointing out that the alternative fuels being pushed on us are not being well thought out. The transition from leaded to unleaded gasoline was at least PLANNED. Gasohol, not so much. There’s thought that the change from 10% to 15% ethanol is POLITICALLY motivated, not ENVIRONMENTALLY. As in, the corn growers want more money. Including Federal subsidy money.

    If we are going to be FORCED to pay for this, I would like to know that it isn’t a crap solution, like a lot of the other “solutions” coming out of the EPA.

  13. JeffS says:

    Oops! “I don’t DISagree….”


  14. Rob says:


    I am not at all defending the production, use, or practicality of ethanol. A lot of people object to it or favor it for one reason or another. That it damages engines, though, is a very suspect reason. It is … dare I say it … a favored narrative.

  15. Barking Spider says:

    One major reason that ethanol is being forced on us is the first presidential causcus being in Iowa. The presidential candidates must bow to the corn farmer for votes.

  16. Gunslinger says:

    Especially this particular corn farmer.

  17. skh.pcola says:

    Electric cars have been invented, introduced, and have failed in the market place for >100 years. The technology is not viable, still. I live in Milton, a mere 17-20 miles from most places that I regularly visit/haunt in Pcola, and today’s >$40,000 electric would be an iffy proposition for primary transportation.

    We are several technological quantum leaps away from the energy density storage necessary to make electric cars a realistic replacement for the gas-powered internal combustion engine. Too, consider that $5-$6-$7/gal gas that you seem to pine for, Rob, is primarily due to the retarded energy policies that envirokooks push and Democrats embrace. Oil is the second most abundant liquid on earth…it ain’t rare or scarce.

  18. Rob says:

    Don’t read any politics into my comments, skh. I’m not pining for higher gas prices. Higher gas prices are coming, though, and that’s why EVERY car manufacturer in the world is investing in electric and hybrid technology. There’s a market it for it now. That is going to accelerate development. People have $40+ cars now. When they can start buying one that might save them $2500-$3500 per year on gasoline, they will line up for them. As more are sold, they’ll get better and cheaper. My whole point in all of my comments is we’re much closer to that day than people think. They won’t take over the road but it wouldn’t surprise me to see one in most 2 car and 3 car households in the next 10 years.

  19. Rob says:

    That was supposed to be $40k+. Sorry.

  20. Larry says:

    It’s a 2011 GT, 5.0 Coyote engine. Fresh design, new technology.

  21. Rob says:

    Good Luck with that, Larry. Some of the guys I work with inconvenience themselves considerably using non-E85 exclusively but they break down and use it sometimes anyway. It’s one level of inconvenience if you simply don’t like it. It’s a whole other thing if you can’t use it at all.

  22. skh.pcola says:

    Rob, the days of higher gasoline prices are the direct result of an atrophied US energy policy. That was my point. The market is being manipulated by political motives influenced by greenies. You likely would cite so-called “Peak Oil” as a reason for your faith in higher retail prices for gas, but until the choke hold that envirofascists have on our resources can be broken, there’s no evidence that there is a looming natural scarcity of crude stocks.

    Further, electric cars have a poor ROI. Take the tax credit out of the picture, and the ROI of an electric car over the expected life of the batteries is significantly less than that of a conventional, efficient gas-powered car–say, a Honda Civic. It makes no economic sense to purchase one of these boondoggles.

    I’d posit that your assertion “that’s why EVERY car manufacturer in the world is investing in electric and hybrid technology” has nothing to do with the basis of said assertion. Instead, manufacturers are rent seeking in the political sphere, hoping to make $ from subsidies and artificially induced demand via tax credits. Witness the explosion of wind turbine installations and solar panels, which are heavily subsidized, yet make no economic sense. Just because everybody is doing it doesn’t make it smart or sensible.

  23. Rob says:

    You are dealing in the here and now, skh. I am not. Early efforts always come in fits and starts. You will never get me to defend energy policy over the last 40 years. I’m saying there is economic, not-necessarily-political demand for these vehicles and someone will make them viable. It’s not that far out. Check back here in 10 years. What’s happened in just the last five is amazing.

  24. skh.pcola says:

    I admire your optimism in the face of dissenting reality, Rob. People have been saying the same thing and searching for your pot o’ gold for over a hundred years. Before there is an economically viable electric vehicle, there will have to be incredible advances in battery technology on a much smaller scale…such as high power density batteries (higher than existing batteries) for consumer goods like flashlights. Ten years isn’t enough time for those tech innovations to power a practical electric car. Again, people have been intoning your mantra for a long time, but you can’t trump the reality that gasoline is readily available and has a higher energy density than any current or WAG of what batteries will be capable of any time soon.

    Too, there is economic demand for cars that run on wishes and water. Unfortunately, there is no supply to meet that demand, even if the gubmint stepped in to offer $7,500 tax credits to purchase one. You can always tell true demand by watching the behavior of consumers that do not require incentives from government subsidies as the impetus for trade.

    This thread is getting pushed down the front page, but thanks for the discussion and good to meet you. I’ve been a lurker for some time and rarely comment…this topic is of interest to me and I thought that I’d chime in.

  25. Rob says:

    One more thing for you to consider, skh. Between China, India, and Indonesia, you have about 2.5 billion people. Most of them get around without cars. Their economies and transportation needs are growing rapidly as is their wealth. They will soon be competing in the open market for that same oil that we want. I enjoyed this as well. I usually don’t speak out on this but it affects me more than most and there aren’t a lot of safe places to do this without the whole thing turning into a flame war.

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