Despite the fact that his business has seen something of a windfall because of alcohol-related engine damage, Herder is no fan of the fuel.
Herder estimates that as much as 75 percent of that work is not due to normal wear and tear, but results from the use of ethanol, which can cause rust and carbon deposits inside the engine, dissolve plastic parts and more.
And if repair shops like Herder's are already busy, you have to wonder what will happen this summer when gas pumps begin dispensing E15 gasoline; the Environmental Protection Agency recently approved the fuel for cars built after the 2000 model year, but the fuel could hit small engines even harder than E10 does.
But now, because of all that ethanol-based wear and tear, a nascent industry is starting up: Ethanol-free gas, distributed in cans for owners of small engines. PM first covered the topic in October 1937, when it reported on a plant in Atchison, Kan., that used corn, wheat or sugar syrup to make alcohol, which it combined with a small quantity of coal distillate to make a fuel called Agrol.
The alcohol can cause the fuel to ignite at the wrong time in the combustion sequence, ruining parts in the process. "They look like they've been hit with a hammer." Clearly the time for an alternative has come.
The phenomenon of fuel-related problems has become so severe that the niche market for specialized fuel is growing fast.
Search for Cam2 ucretsiz:
The market for these fuels is still so new that there's no generally recognized name for them.