E85 Fuel: Good Or Bad?

Ethanol has also driven up the cost of food corn, a staple for poor communities particularly in Mexico, to where the poor are suffering. I was going to post a link to an article, but when I Googled the subject there were just too many articles to choose from. I recommend looking.

Ethanol is a huge farce. A political sham. An object lesson for those who stiill think our politicians have our best interests at heart.

“Ethanol is a huge farce. A political sham. An object lesson for those who stiill think our politicians have our best interests at heart.”

Nicely stated @mountainbike. I think I’ll ask my wife to stitch that on a cushion sometime.

High levels of ethanol (E10+) in gasoline is a farce. But I would not apply that term to E10. Ethanol replaces MTBE as an octane enhancer. Many areas have outlawed the use of MTBE because it doesn’t break down in the soil and can poison ground water. Normally this is not a problem, but when older in-ground gasoline storage tanks leak, MTBE gets into ground water. While there are other chemicals that could increase octane, they are all more expensive than ethanol. Gas is expensive as it is, and I’ll settle for E10. My hope is that cellulosic ethanol production will be a reality in the next 5 to 10 years and corn can go back to feeding people.

While I also hope for some sort of biofuel breakthrough, we’re not there, and it’s not very promising. The government got way ahead of the science/technology with the ethanol requirements, such as mandating use of non-existent cellulosic ethanol today, and also failing to allow for decreased gasoline consumption (mandating a gallon ethanol target, rather than a 10% target).

E85 Fuel: Good Or Bad?

Again? Really? Hasn’t this horse been beaten enough already?

The whole ethanol thing has been beaten a lot. However, it just keeps getting worse, with the EPA trying to force E15 on us, and considering mandating E30 use in some future cars. If it were just E10 in volumes needed to make E10, and E85 for the 0.1% of people that actually use it, I wouldn’t be nearly as concerned.

Here’s an article on the E30 issue:

This E30 sounds way to good to be true . . .

I’m not one that usually believes in conspiracies, but this sounds like a CLASSIS case of the consumer having to swallow something he NEVER wanted

In any case, if that stuff is being forced down my throat, it had better be as magical as it’s supposed to be, and it better not harm my older vehicles . . .

Here’s some possible ethanol industry goals:

Gradually phase in E30
At some point, ONLY E30, or fuels with an even larger ethanol content, will be available
Our older cars won’t run optimally on E30
Since we want well running, economical, modern cars, we’ll trade in for new, E30-compatible cars
The car industry is happy, because it’s selling more cars
The ethanol industry is happy, because it’s future is insured

Waters for washing,Dickels for drinking and corn is for food.When I enthusasticaly endorsed ethanol.I envisioned only the use of the waste corn and stuff the rodents were going to eat up.Never thought this nightmare was headed our way,despite the many advantages pollution wise of ethyl alcohol,the only way to make it competitive is to increase the efficiency of the ICE to give similar mileage for similar output-Kevin

Perhaps this needs to go on the very long lisg of government regulatory mandates run amok. We now have lightbulbs that cost 10X as much and produce poor quality light until they die and become a hazmat problem, toilets that can’t flush a healthy deposit, cars with technology that many can’t afford to pay for and that creat problems in other aspects (such as wheel bearings that no longer last the life of the vehicle and ABS that…simply doesn’t allow you to stop on low-traction surfaces such as ice or gravel, and the list goes on. I’ll be the first to state that when these agencies were originally created they promulgated regulations to ensure compliance with the law tht created them, and some good things came out of them. Seatbelts, crush zones, rearview mirrors, and safety glass are examples. But IMHO many of these agencies have long since passed being an asset and yet still continue to creat more and more regulations, many not even related to the law that created the agency.

The list of examples of out of control agencies reminds me of the list of grievances against tha King of England in the Declaration of Independance. Except it’s far longer. The founders must be rolling over in their graves.

92 Octane/no ethanol, is a buck mote than E10 which is @$3.88.

I’m shooting for 100miles/gal using the 92premium, but will be happy with 70mpg. Either will be a big improvement on the Civ’s 22mpg on E10.

Uses less energy? Not sure what you mean? You will gain HP using E85 my Truck gains about 15 hp more!

Db didn’t say is USES less energy, he said it CONTAINS less energy. A gallon of E85 contains less BTU’s of energy (or kWatt-hrs) than a gallon of straight gasoline. All dual-fuel vehicles get worse miles-per-gallon on E85 than they do on pump gasoline - which contains 10% ethanol anyway.

The octane rating for E85 is higher than gasoline so your truck can make more power if it is designed to do so. (Octane is a measure of engine knock and not a measure of the contained energy) It will, however use more E85 to make that horsepower - your mpg’s will decrease - because each gallon has less energy.


How did you measure this?


The result of a purely market driven economy is a plutocracy of haves and have nots while the alternative is political control and an economy of have and have nots. Currently the US has the worst of both.

I don’t believe those are the only alternatives. Nor do I think we have the worst of both worlds.

Democracy isn’t perfect, but it’s better than the alternatives. There will always be a group of people who are unhappy with the status quo in a democracy. Those people should vote in greater numbers.

i like it when the thread sticks to technical details. reviving a 4yr old thread is annoying though. there is another thread on the site about an accord owner who has lowered mileage in the winter. some posters say it might be due to winter blend gas? and cold weather. but maybe the accord owner should try using non-ethanol gas and see if it helps his mileage. though that is illegal. the 100% gas is for off-road use or use in a boat or so on. will his car go back to 27mpg with the gas? and than back to 24mpg with the e10? that still wont explain why his mileage is off now

I’ll echo what I said several years ago. E10 is a bad idea and E85 is a terrible idea.

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I have observed that hyperbole is politically haute couture @Whitey. And I’m making an effort to become more hauty in order to avoid being left out. FOMO is becoming epidemic.

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As it is implemented in the U.S., ethanol-based fuel is a bad idea. As it has been implemented in Brazil, ethanol production has helped them become energy independent.

One aspect I like about flex fuel vehicles is that, no matter what bonehead decision the government makes, whether it’s to switch from E10 to E15, or it’s some other bonehead decision, owning a flex fuel vehicle will give you options without having to modify the vehicle. Maybe that’s the reasoning behind this policy:

While Pennsylvania has a mandate to use Ethanol in gasoline, it’s not illegal to use pure gasoline in road vehicles. There’s actually a station a few miles from my house that offers it