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Classic Mustangs Tech Forum

Technical discussions specific to 1964-1967, 1968-1970, and 1971-1973 Classic Mustang. Discuss all tech related to in-line six cylinder and V8 powered Vintage Mustangs here.

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Unread 02-27-2003   #1 (permalink)
krankieone is offline Made Member

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Question Ethanol in Gasoline why is it bad for your car?

There has been a big who-ha in the press about ethanol in gas here as some stations were busted selling up to 30% ethanol .Then we hear that it isn't good for your engine.
But why is it no good?
I know that ethanol has a lower specific gravity than gasoline and if you were going to run it you would have to rejet your carby.Is the posibility of leaning out the only detremental side efect of running this coctail?

I would apreciate some more information so I can make an informed decision about using this product.
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Unread 02-28-2003   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
For reformulated winter gas, lighter, low-boiling-point components are added to the gasoline to increase volatility. This makes your car easier to start and accelerates converter light-off, thus lowering emissions. That's the official line on reformulated gas.
Quote:
Here's the poop: As specified by state law, reformulated winter gas contains any number of lighter, lower-boiling-point hydrocarbons (butane, propane, etc.) that just so happen to have an excellent octane value. Added to this may be any number of oxygen-bearing ether compounds (MTBE, ETBE, ethanol) that improve emissions and also have a relatively high octane blending value.
Quote:
"The oxygen-bearing compounds displace fuel components, so it takes more fuel to get the job done. Normal gasoline has a stoichiometric ratio of 14.7:1, reformulated winter fuel runs between 14.3 and 14.4:1," says Mitch Markusich.
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Unread 02-28-2003   #3 (permalink)
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The down side of blended fuels is that your motor has to burn more blended fuel to perform the same amount of work as it would burning an unblended gasoline. The blending agents (ethanol, MTBE, Propane, etc.) typically have 1/2 or less the energy density of gasoline. Hence, your motor has to burn more fuel to accomplish the same amount of work. As Robert mentioned, there are some advantages to this kind of fuel (from an emissions standpoint) as far as easier starting in cold weather and earlier catalyst activation. The downside is you burn more blended fuel than you would regular gasoline to traverse the same distance. Leaning out can also be a problem if the carb you are using has fuel passages that are only barely keeping up with the idle and part throttle demands of your system on regular gas. This is not normally much of an issue at the levels these fuels are blended at (<30%) but can become a problem at higher concentrations of alcohol. For alot of us here in the states, we have no choice but to burn blended gas in the wintertime by law. If you can avoid it, I'd jump at the chace to save yourself a few bucks.

John H
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