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Congressional Proposal Seeks to Prohibit E15 Gasoline

Discussion in 'Performance & Fuel' started by Enkeiavalanche, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. Enkeiavalanche

    Enkeiavalanche Moderator 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    SEMA is supporting legislation (S. 344) introduced in the U.S. Senate to ban the sale of gasoline containing 15% ethanol. The bill would overturn actions taken by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) two years ago to permit ethanol levels to rise from 10% (E10) to 15% (E15). The agency is only requiring a gas pump warning label to alert motorists that E15 could potentially cause equipment failure for vehicles older than model-year 2001.
    “This legislation is necessary to protect auto enthusiasts by preventing damage to older vehicles and high-performance specialty components,” said SEMA Vice President of Government Affairs Steve McDonald. “SEMA applauds Senators Roger Wicker (R-MS) and David Vitter (R-LA) for their efforts to correct by statute a flawed decision by the EPA. Unless enacted into law, E15 may soon appear at a gas station near you.”
    Ethanol increases water formation that can then create formic acid and corrode metals, plastics and rubber. Older cars and certain high-performance specialty parts are not constructed with corrosion-resistant materials or able to tolerate the higher temperatures at which E15 may burn. Auto enthusiasts have complained for years about damage caused by E10, which is now in more than 90% of gas sold in the United States E15 would increase that risk by 50%. For classic cars that are infrequently driven, corrosion could eventually damage the engine, fuel line, fuel tank and exhaust systems.
    SEMA represents thousands of companies that market products for these vehicles and, through its SEMA Action Network (SAN), millions of enthusiasts who buy and operate these automobiles.
  2. dobey

    dobey Member 100 Posts

    Might you have a link to some study that shows this? I saw a message elsewhere about this same bill, and did a few searches, but could not find any scientific information about the forming of formic acid in E15.

    Only references I can find suggest it's a by-product of combustion of water-contaminated ethanol mixed with gasoline, and would be broken down somewhat in the catalytic converter (or just expelled in exhaust for vehicles without). Said references also suggest that significant water contamination would be required for that to happen, and for smaller contamination acetic acid would more likely be produced, but again, as part of combustion. As the creation of these acids occurs during combustion, there would be no way for any corrosion of rubber or plastics due to it. AFAICT, this is really only a concern for significant mixes of ethanol and gasoline, such as E85.
  3. tbplus10

    tbplus10 Super Moderator Staff Member Platinum Contributor 1000 Posts 100 Posts

    You can find a lot more info on this on boat and RV forums, since these type vehicles see a lot of storage time it's become a major issue for owners.
    There have been owners using different methods and chemicals to combat/stop the damaging affects but I dont believe anyones found a foolproof method to solve the whole issue.

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