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What does ethanol do to small engines?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by exmarkking, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. dboyd351

    dboyd351 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,124

    Absolutely incorrect. Water mixes with ethanol (and other alcohol), but will not mix with gas. How do you think water stays in solution in isopropyl alcohol? Have you ever seen water separate out from non-ethanol gas? You can pour the straight gas off the top after the water separates out and run the gas with no problems.
  2. XYZLawnPros

    XYZLawnPros LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 395

    The gentleman who does these tests works for a petrol lab.
    He does his own tests on his own time.

    How do you get a gallon of 91 octane ethanol gas from the
    2nd busiest station in town to be exactly 10%? We've
    already found out that isn't going to happen ever.
  3. themadcutter

    themadcutter LawnSite Senior Member
    from florida
    Messages: 914

    You are absoluy correct. Water in gas will not mix in. That is why if you by something like tank dry, used to be a common adaptive to remove water out if gas, it was made with various slchahol or ethanol or isopropyl That would bond with the water in the fuel system.

    Some if you have mentioned negatives about additives like staybilizer. All I know is eth fuel left for even less than 6 months in my shop starts to turn to varnish and stink like rotten corn without a staybilizer
    Posted via Mobile Device
  4. 04cubcadet3235

    04cubcadet3235 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 61

    Well im going by what they tell you at the pump, 10%. not 17%. If he can get gas with only 10% ethanol, it should be tested because 17% is almost twice as much as 10%.
  5. themadcutter

    themadcutter LawnSite Senior Member
    from florida
    Messages: 914

    there is a long history throughout the world of things not being quite what they are labeled to be. Right down to the amount of apple in apple juice. In fact I remember a 20/20 piece on the very subject where 100 percent apple juice ended up being 50% sucrose and corn syrup (or something like that)

    I would not be surprised to see even more than 17% ethanol added to gas despite of what the label says.
  6. 04cubcadet3235

    04cubcadet3235 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 61

    "Other alcohol" which is in the additives it does mix with. Ethanol, i have not done the testing but i know water can mix with it, you are right on that but its mostly the alcohol in the additives everyone uses. Tomorrow im going to talk to someone who has done fuel testing before, and i will show him what you say and i will get back to you on what he says. What he has told me from this point is the fact that water has been mixing with gas before way ethanol was put into gas. If you have any questions you want me to ask him let me know tonight and ill get back to you here tomorrow.
  7. 04cubcadet3235

    04cubcadet3235 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 61

    Yes i know that, that's the sad part about today, just like you can buy a synthetic blend that you are supposed to think is 50% conventional, 50% synthetic only has to be around 15% synthetic 85% conventional. The test that should be done is a test on the 10% they tell you you are getting instead of up to 30% in some cases ive heard.
  8. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,274

    Water can be easily delt with by using Mechanic in a Bottle. Take a small glass of 2stroke mix add a bit of water andn what do see? Then add Mechanic in bottle shake and leave it set. Can you see the water?
  9. ZX12R

    ZX12R LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 795

    In the link below is a Bosch fuel filter for a Kohler 26 HP EFI motor.This filter is used in older BMW's ,Juguars and many other cars. Note that in the 'spec",it states >>>>>>Not compatible with greater than 10% ethanol fuel.

    I suspect that ethanol would dry the media inside causing it to crumble and break apart causing problems.Looks like I will be changing that filter once a year now.

    In NJ,it is not mandatory for the amount of ethanol in gas to be stated on gas pumps,so,who knows how much we are actually getting. :terribletowel:

  10. themadcutter

    themadcutter LawnSite Senior Member
    from florida
    Messages: 914

    its not a new problem. in the early 20th century, shop keepers that sold dairy would water down milk. those that took it to the extreme would add white chaulk powder to the watery milk to bring back the color.

    except today, with something so universally used like gasoline you would think more testing would be done. but it was a government mandate that shells around large sums of money so what else can you expect.

    I for one hate ethanol in gas.

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