Why should ethanol not be used as fuel?
Ethanol: Contains significantly less energy per gallon than gasoline. Is hygroscopic, meaning it absorbs water out of the air, which means it can damage engines due to excess water content if not handled carefully.
Disadvantages: Ethanol has 35% less energy than gasoline by volume, so E10 is actually 13.5% of the volume of a gallon of the stuff. Because of the lower energy, drivers have to fuel up 3.5% more often than if they just used gasoline.
Ethanol blended gasoline can cause serious engine damage when used regularly. It is corrosive and highly water soluble, often leading to storage problems. If left, water in the fuel system can cause rusting, fuel degradation and other problems. Ethanol fuel is also associated with microbial contamination.
Some people may not like ethanol in their gasoline for a few reasons. Ethanol can potentially cause harm to certain types of engines, particularly older engines and small power equipment such as lawnmowers and chainsaws. Ethanol can attract moisture, which can lead to corrosion and other issues in fuel systems.
Low-level blends of E10 or less require no special fueling equipment, and they can be used in any conventional gasoline vehicle. It is also possible to accommodate blends above E10 in existing fueling equipment, however, some equipment needs to be upgraded to comply with federal code.
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Most cars on the road today in the U.S. can run on blends of up to 15% ethanol, and ethanol represented 10% of the U.S. gasoline fuel supply derived from domestic sources in 2011. Some flexible-fuel vehicles are able to use up to 100% ethanol.
Pure ethanol – 100% ethanol or E100 – could theoretically be used to power cars, but generally isn't, for numerous reasons: Ethanol is bad for cold-starting, because it doesn't burn as quickly as gasoline. (It has a higher octane, if you're interested.) Pure ethanol would be useless as fuel in the winter months.
Ethanol is the most widely available source of gasoline substitute, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Ethanol can also be made from landfill gases and municipal solid waste, as well as agricultural waste, animal manures, food wastes, fats, oils and greases.
Proponents of ethanol ethanol argue that it is one of the alternative fuels and it is a cleaner, more sustainable alternative to fossil fuels. In contrast, critics argue that it is not a viable solution for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and may contribute to environmental problems.
Is ethanol fuel cheaper than gasoline?
E85 is typically cheaper per gallon than gasoline but slightly more expensive per mile. Performance. Drivers should notice no performance loss when using E85. In fact, some FFVs perform better—have more torque and horsepower—running on E85 than on regular gasoline.
Using pure gas can lead to better mileage. But increased fuel economy from using ethanol-free gas may be offset by its higher cost. Non-ethanol gasoline typically costs more than ethanol-blended varieties. Using non-ethanol gas in your car won't harm the vehicle's engine.
87-octane can have no more than 10 percent ethanol. The difference between 87 and 88 is an additional 5% ethanol. This is important because if you have an owner's manual from a vehicle made in 2002-2015, it probably lists the maximum amount of ethanol at up to 10 percent.
In fact, nationwide availability of ethanol established back in the late 1970s was a key element in the success of flex-fuel vehicles, which now account for 85pc of all cars on the road in Brazil, and 83pc of all new light vehicle sales in 2022, data from Brazil vehicle association Anfavea says.
Moonshine, which is a high-proof distilled spirit, typically ranges from 80 to 190 proof, or 40% to 95% alcohol by volume. However, the actual proof of moonshine can vary depending on how it's made and the skill of the distiller.
The fermentation process used to make moonshine produces alcohol in two forms: methanol and ethanol. Ethanol is the drinkable version. Methanol, known as wood alcohol, is a byproduct that's toxic when large amounts end up in the finished product.
The 190-proof variant of Everclear is 92.4% ethanol by weight and is thus produced at approximately the practical limit of distillation purity.
Hydrogen is a potentially emissions-free alternative fuel that can be produced from domestic resources for use in fuel cell vehicles.
Is Premium or Mid-Grade Fuel Worth the Extra Money? Premium gas doesn't provide any more power or contain better additives than regular gas, and it contains the same amount of ethanol as other grades. It just resists detonation (knock) better than lower-octane gas—nothing more, nothing less.
Adding ethanol raises the octane rating of the resulting fuel blend. It also prevents knocking, the uneven combustion of gasoline that makes a distinctly loud sound and can damage the engine. Furthermore, ethanol improves the oxygen content of gasoline.
What are the disadvantages of ethanol as an alternative fuel?
One of the primary disadvantages of ethanol is that it is not as energy-dense as gasoline. This means that it has a lower energy content and is less efficient than gasoline. As a result, vehicles that use ethanol as a fuel source may not get as many miles per gallon as those that use gasoline.
Ethanol. Pros: Reduces demand for foreign oil, low emissions, high octane, and can potentially be produced from waste materials; existing cars can use 10-percent blends (called E10), and more than 8 million cars already on the road can use E85. Cons: Twenty-five percent lower fuel economy on E85 than gasoline.
There would have to be a large infrastructure change to provide ethanol refueling stations. Ethanol also absorbs water easily giving it a high tendency to corrode materials. Pure ethanol is difficult to vaporize meaning starting a car in cold weather could be more difficult that a car that runs on petrol.
It burns more cleanly than gasoline, and helps stretch the finite supply of gas further. However, the mileage in a car isn't as good a regular gas. The gain in air pollution is offset by the lack of mileage, making for an awkward tradeoff, with methanol still out ahead as a fuel.
Ethanol is nasty stuff. It corrodes the metals and alloys used in the fuel systems of classic cars, and it also seriously shortens the life of any rubber or plastic components it comes into contact with, such as fuel lines. Such damage is not necessarily obvious in the short to medium term. It's cumulative over time.