E15 indicated as high risk for vehicle engines

Thursday, September 26, 2013
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

Questions continue to be raised about E15 ethanol and its impact on engines.

E15 is a blend of gasoline containing 15% ethanol. Most gas stations today sell E10 or 10% ethanol.

Sena

Jessica Sena, an independent contractor for oil and gas public relations, says the smaller percentage blend is fine but E15 is another issue.

"It burns really hot,” she explains. “It's hard on engines. If you go to any Husqvarna YouTube page, they'll show you a little disclaimer saying, 'Do not put E15 in your lawn mowers, your chain saws,' things like that."

OneNewsNow found a Husqvarna webpage that makes a point to advise owners that "the use of E15 or greater will cause improper operation and will (original emphasis) cause major engine failure."

White

Robert White, director of market development at the Renewable Fuels Association, says small engines were neither tested nor approved for E15.

"And what we have tried tell the small engine manufacturers and consumers that have them is, ‘Simply, read the pump,’ he says. “Diesel and kerosene are also not approved for smaller engines."

Toyota owners manual E15

Meanwhile, it's not just smaller engines. OneNewsNow has found that an owner's manual for a 2013 Toyota Highlander advises owners not to put E15 in the vehicle. That is interesting, given the fact that the government approved E15 for vehicles from 2001 and newer.

White says there are certain manufacturers that have had problems with E10 over the years, and many companies plan and design vehicles years in advance, but White notes that other manufacturers like GM, Ford and VW do currently endorse E15.

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