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10% enthanol gas problem

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by Wright48, Oct 26, 2010.

  1. Wright48

    Wright48 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 242

    I live in new jersey and the gas now contains 10% enthanol and its a big problem with the carbs on my 2 stroke equipment every 12 to 14 weeks the carbs have to be cleaned and adjusted because my machanic says theres too much enthanol in the gas long story short its between 40-70 bucks usally per machine everytime and they just get clogged again,I can see once or twice a season but this is crazy. My mix is right on the money I use plus gas and I use a fuel additive to pro long the cleanings any suggestions ? or a website that shows you how to clean and adjust a carb ?
  2. bradseabridge

    bradseabridge LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 720

    I think every pump now adays uses 10% ethanol, I have been using it for as long as I can remember and I never have any issues. Most of the time it's the ADDITIVES people use in their stuff because they think it will help. I would stop using the additive and get amsoil saber and run a 80:1 mix like a lot of people on here including me. I haven't had one problem with my echo's in over a year and I haven't done a thing to them except fill with gas and run the **** out of it,
  3. DA Quality Lawn & YS

    DA Quality Lawn & YS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,896

    This is an irrelevant thread....gas has contained 10% eth for years. I use Opti-2 with this fuel and haven't had to clean a carb yet, unless of course I do it by choice at the end of the season as basic maintenance.
  4. bradseabridge

    bradseabridge LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 720

    Thanks, that's what I'm saying. The stuff has been around since I've been able to drive which is when I first noticed it. Seriously though get rid of the additive and run a 80:1 oil with Amsoil Sabre, and it should fix your carb problem. You can get it online for like $12 a quart.

    ALSO if anything the ethanol would clean your carb out not gum it up. It's more corrosive than gasoline so the gas isn't the problem. If anything it would make your equipment act like it was running too lean. It definitely won't gum up a carb, its more likely to destroy your seals and gas lines.
  5. RAlmaroad

    RAlmaroad LawnSite Silver Member
    from SC
    Posts: 2,194

    Same problem. We are still able to get non-Ethanol gas for all small engines including lawnmowers. Ethanol deteriorates the plastic lines in modern engines. If you can't get Ethanol free; then use the high test or just come on down to Tennessee and buy yourself a barrel. Like Brad said, use that additive on everything. In trucks and cars the compression rate is so much higher than 2 cycle and lawn mowers which cleans it by pulling more through. Our chain saw shops keep a steady business of replacing plastic fuel lines due to the ethanol.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  6. bradseabridge

    bradseabridge LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 720

    I'm not sure on this but I think 2cycles have a much higher compression rate in 4cycles. Also I DON'T recommend using any type of additive in gas unless it's your mixed gas and your using AMSOIL SABER!!
  7. lakesregionscapes

    lakesregionscapes LawnSite Member
    Posts: 145

    Ethanol was just introduced here in NH in the last couple of years or so in our area: the first day we used it all four backpacks and the big blower all crapped out in a one hour window... and so began the headaches. Replaced all the filters, adjusted carbs and started cussing daily at hard starts, random stalling and generally cranky small equipment. Brand new equipment acting up after a month or less. Boss very cranky when the guys come back saying "it's running like crap - AGAIN".
    After trial and error, and many chats with the local repair shops, we've reached a balance of sorts.
    Use mid-grade or higher octane (specified in the owner's manual that no guy around here ever reads - just me) with the 2-cycle oil from the manufacturer(we use Echo, or Stihl in a pinch) and have the repair shop show you how to adjust the carb set-screw: on our Echo backpacks it's a teeny-tiny screw at the bottom of a very small, plugged hole in the carburator body. Need a flat jeweler's screwdriver to get to it.
    Keep in mind that the gas stability with ethanol is very low (goes to hell in a week) and I'm told it absorbs water like MBTE did, so don't mix up a whole lot at once unless your gonna use it soon.

    At least our big mowers and trucks like the ethanol...
  8. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,350

    Not really. Last year our gas supplier finally was forced to switch to ethanol blend. So it is possible that this has happened in other areas as well.

    What it will do is attract more water, maybe that is the problem? Maybe your supplier has too much water in their tanks? Ours put a filter on it that pretty much shuts the flow down if there's water in the tank.
  9. dboyd351

    dboyd351 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,101

    Depending on where you are, this might be a solution:

    It is a state by state list of stations that sell gas without ethanol in it.
  10. Lawn Specialties

    Lawn Specialties LawnSite Member
    Posts: 207

    Just something to ponder. Saying the problem is the ethanol in gas is actually a half truth.Ethanol is actually a really effective solvent. I never could figure out why I've been able to run it for 15 years and NEVER have a fuel related problem while others have a nightmare with it. I talked to local auto mechanic and he said all the the cars went haywire when they introduced E-85 to the area. Apparently the issue stems from the ethanol cleaning the deposits that have been left over time. So if you have equipment that was broken in on E-10 there shouldn't be any problems. I understand this doesn't help with used equipment but as it's phased in these problems should go away. As far as storage I use opti 2 mixed as directed and put stabil in any gas stored over the winter.All my equipment is filled to the brim for storage so there's no room for condensation to form. Again no problems come spring.I store two cycle fuel all winter (5 months) with no problems with only the opti 2 in it.

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