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Discuss Ethanol OK in Malibu? in the alt.autos.gm forum at Car Dealer Forums; Don_ wrote: > I have a 2004 Malibu. The gasoline pump I use has a ...
  1. #1
    Eric
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    Don_ wrote:
    > I have a 2004 Malibu. The gasoline pump I use has a sticker saying "10%
    > Ethanol". I heard that ethanol can sometimes damage rubber seals in the
    > fuel system. Am I safe using 10% ethanol?


    Depends on who you ask, but most mechanics now say "yes." This is one
    of those great debates where you can get any "expert" advice you want
    to hear.

    Some---it used to be a majority, but not any more---say E-10 can be bad
    for your engine; all the major car manufacturers say it's safe; and
    farmers/corn industry advocates and a handful of mechanics (though none
    I've talked to personally) say it's actually better for your car than
    regular gas.

    Whatever. One thing I can tell you first-hand is that using E-10 WILL
    reduce your gas mileage/fuel economy. I found out the hard way; never
    paid attention to the sticker at the gas pumps at the station where I
    used to fill up.

    In search of an answer to why my '04 Malibu Classic did not get
    anywhere near EPA sticker fuel economy, I booked up on ethanol and
    started filling up at a station that sells non-E-10 regular gasoline.
    Immediately I noticed an increase of about 4.5% (or about 1.1 to 1.2
    mpg) in gas mileage.

    Not a huge difference, but it's there---and it holds true for all
    vehicles, from what I've read online. It has to do with the chemical
    composition of ethanol vs. gasoline; I'll let someone with more
    scientific knowledge than I explain it.

    That's why I never buy E-10 or any form of ethanol if I can help it.
    The alleged increased air quality/reduced emissions are countered by
    the increased use of fuel, so I'm not sure how much "greener" it is in
    the long run. Also it costs more....

    I like the idea of supporting the U.S. corn industry and other domestic
    suppliers of ethanol; I also like the idea of helping the environment.
    When the scientific geniuses find a way to mix ethanol into gasoline
    without reducing fuel economy and hitting me in the wallet I will sign
    on in support.

    Till then I am strictly a gasoline guy.

    Regards,
    Eric M


  2. #2
    Sharon K. Cooke
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    Eric wrote:
    >
    > Don_ wrote:
    > > I have a 2004 Malibu. The gasoline pump I use has a sticker saying "10%
    > > Ethanol". I heard that ethanol can sometimes damage rubber seals in the
    > > fuel system. Am I safe using 10% ethanol?

    >
    > Depends on who you ask, but most mechanics now say "yes." This is one
    > of those great debates where you can get any "expert" advice you want
    > to hear.
    >
    > Some---it used to be a majority, but not any more---say E-10 can be bad
    > for your engine; all the major car manufacturers say it's safe; and
    > farmers/corn industry advocates and a handful of mechanics (though none
    > I've talked to personally) say it's actually better for your car than
    > regular gas.
    >
    > Whatever. One thing I can tell you first-hand is that using E-10 WILL
    > reduce your gas mileage/fuel economy. I found out the hard way; never
    > paid attention to the sticker at the gas pumps at the station where I
    > used to fill up.
    >
    > In search of an answer to why my '04 Malibu Classic did not get
    > anywhere near EPA sticker fuel economy, I booked up on ethanol and
    > started filling up at a station that sells non-E-10 regular gasoline.
    > Immediately I noticed an increase of about 4.5% (or about 1.1 to 1.2
    > mpg) in gas mileage.
    >
    > Not a huge difference, but it's there---and it holds true for all
    > vehicles, from what I've read online. It has to do with the chemical
    > composition of ethanol vs. gasoline; I'll let someone with more
    > scientific knowledge than I explain it.
    >
    > That's why I never buy E-10 or any form of ethanol if I can help it.
    > The alleged increased air quality/reduced emissions are countered by
    > the increased use of fuel, so I'm not sure how much "greener" it is in
    > the long run. Also it costs more....
    >
    > I like the idea of supporting the U.S. corn industry and other domestic
    > suppliers of ethanol; I also like the idea of helping the environment.
    > When the scientific geniuses find a way to mix ethanol into gasoline
    > without reducing fuel economy and hitting me in the wallet I will sign
    > on in support.
    >
    > Till then I am strictly a gasoline guy.
    >
    > Regards,
    > Eric M


    2004 Malibu? Most likely - CHECK FOR STICKERS underhood and for info in
    owner's manual - your vehicle will run on E85.

  3. #3
    John Horner
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    Eric wrote:
    > Don_ wrote:
    >> I have a 2004 Malibu. The gasoline pump I use has a sticker saying "10%
    >> Ethanol". I heard that ethanol can sometimes damage rubber seals in the
    >> fuel system. Am I safe using 10% ethanol?

    >


    In many markets all of the fuel is 10% ethanol and often the pumps don't
    even mention it. All modern vehicles available in North America are
    designed to be compatible with such fuels.

    You have nothing to worry about and even if you did, there is little you
    can do about it.

    John

  4. #4
    John Horner
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    Sharon K. Cooke wrote:

    >
    > 2004 Malibu? Most likely - CHECK FOR STICKERS underhood and for info in
    > owner's manual - your vehicle will run on E85.


    E85 means 85% ethanol, and unless the vehicles is specially designed as
    a flex-fuel vehicle you should NOT run E85. GM has a website which
    tells you which models offer E85 compatibility and the Malibu is not on
    the list.

    http://www.gm.com/company/onlygm/energy_flexfuel.html#

    If a vehicle is on that list it means that it was AVAILABLE in a
    flex-fuel E85 version, but not all of the vehicles manufactured of a
    given year/model are flex-fuel. You have to use a decoder linked at the
    bottom of that page to find out if your VIN shows your vehicle to be a
    flex-fuel version.



    John


  5. #5
    John Horner
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    Eric wrote:

    >
    > I like the idea of supporting the U.S. corn industry and other domestic
    > suppliers of ethanol; I also like the idea of helping the environment.
    > When the scientific geniuses find a way to mix ethanol into gasoline
    > without reducing fuel economy and hitting me in the wallet I will sign
    > on in support.
    >


    Not going to happen. Ethanol has lower energy content per gallon than
    does petroleum derived gasoline. There is no way to change that simple
    fact. Less energy content means less power produced upon combustion
    which in turn means it takes more of the stuff to accomplish a given
    amount of work.

    Engineering, like all of life, is really about trade-offs and choices.
    Stomping your feet and demanding that scientific geniuses find a way
    does not make things happen.

    John

  6. #6
    Paul
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    If you have an older car, replace fuel lines with Heavy Duty Fuel
    Hose Rated at 250 psi this fabric covered high tech rubber line
    costs about $ 3 a foot, well worth it. 10 % Alcohol fuel is
    hard on neoprene type fuel lines. 3/8 = Gates 6LOC Hope this helps

  7. #7
    Sharon K. Cooke
    Guest

    Default Re: Ethanol OK in Malibu?

    Paul wrote:
    >
    > If you have an older car, replace fuel lines with Heavy Duty Fuel
    > Hose Rated at 250 psi this fabric covered high tech rubber line
    > costs about $ 3 a foot, well worth it. 10 % Alcohol fuel is
    > hard on neoprene type fuel lines. 3/8 = Gates 6LOC Hope this helps


    Somewhere around the mid to late '80s the automakers setup their
    vehicles to run on a maximum of 10% ethanol blend, so I can't imagine
    fuel lines being a problem. I had a '76 AMC Hornet (bought used with 70K
    miles) that I ran for about 5 years/80,000 miles with ZERO problems and
    24+ mpg highway. I own three vehicles now, two 90s and one 94, with over
    500,000 total miles, much of it accumulated running an ethanol blend.
    However, I still don't believe ethanol is the answer to anything about
    the energy crisis, since it costs more to make it than just about any
    other liquefied fuel. It makes corn farmers happy and gets politicians
    re-elected, WHILE unnecessarily depleting the 6"-8" of topsoil left on
    the farms in this country. A history of ethanol:
    http://www.eia.doe.gov/kids/history/...s/ethanol.html

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