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My mom was talking to her mechanic about here CE light and he said that he's been being driven crazy the last few months with CE lights showing an engine running lean. He can't seem to find anything wrong.

He then said that he had a new car dealer rep tell him they were having the same problem on older cars. The rep said it was due to the increase in the Ethanol content on fuel up to 15%.

http://www.epa.gov/oms/regs/fuels/additive/e15/420f10054.htm

Has anyone heard of places using E15 but not changing their labels?

And more importantly will E15 case a "running lean" CE?

She threw a code while driving home from visiting this weekend and the repair shop she pulled into said it was running lean on the left side. I told her it was most likely a failing oxygen sensor, but to have her mechanic look at it.

Thoughts…. :2huh:
 

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WOT Junkie and avid corn burner
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Yes. If the computer has not been re calibrated to use fuel with a higher ethanol content, it is still running the fuel mixture it was intended to generate with 100% petrol gasoline. Ethanol's stoichiometric fuel mixture is a lower numerical ratio than that of 100% petrol based gasoline. Stoich for gasoline is approximately 14.7 parts air to fuel. Whereas ethanol's stoichiometric mixture is 9.0 parts air to fuel. Now combine the ethanol with gasoline at a 10% mixture which is sold as E10, and you get a stoichiometric mixture of 14.3:1. Now, if the computer commands a fuel mixture of about 14.7:1, you'll be running lean. With E15, the stoichiometric air to fuel ratio is even lower, which would cause you to run even leaner. The only way to correct this problem is to reprogram engine management computer to enrich the mixture closer to where E10 or E15 burns at stoich. I think they still sell E10, or 10% ethanol gasoline where I am...or they have not changed the labels. I would not be surprised if the latter was the case.
 

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Yes 15% ethanol could definitely cause a lean condition and a CEL. As for whether they have changed to that and not told anyone, I haven't heard anything, but it wouldn't surprise me. I can't believe the adding ethanol to gas at all has gone on this long to begin with, so it must be some kind of kickback to some politician somewhere, so I guess if they want more money, put more ethanol in the fuel.
 

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My 89 Cougar, the first tank of out winter oxygenated fuel, sets a CEL for...I don't remember, since it has done this for the last 10 years, I just make sure I fill up the first time long before it is due for emissions testing. It only does it for about 30 miles, then goes off.

My 97 Cougar and 2000 Grand Marquis, other than a slight hit in fuel mileage, don't care.

However it is just E10, not E15. I think I got E15 in Colorado, and the combination of 86 octane, E15, and the car being 5500 feet higher than it was earlier in the day, it wasn't happy for about 50 miles.
 

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I have heard 15% mentioned, but one would think it would need to be labeled on the pump.

I patronize my no ethanol station when ever I can, especially for my lawn tools, generator, motorcycle, and classic RX-7.;)
 

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Refrigerator Raider Hater
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My thought is that they are going the wrong way. Everyone would be better off if we used "E0". I wish I had the option, I'd pay 10% more for it.
 

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WOT Junkie and avid corn burner
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My thought is that they are going the wrong way. Everyone would be better off if we used "E0". I wish I had the option, I'd pay 10% more for it.
I know, right? That'll never happen because it makes too much sense.
 

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WOT Junkie and avid corn burner
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Too bad the closest station that sells E0 to me is 30 miles away. I'm tempted to make the trip anyways out of nostalgia. lol



Edit: (6-14-11) So, I just made the trip to get some E0 gasoline. Drove the Mustang out there with about 4 gallons of gas in the tank and got a tank full. It cost me $3.85 per gallon for regular 87. However, I picked up 3 MPG. It felt good to put that stuff in my tank. It wasn't about the money at all. It would have been cheaper to not go anywhere or just go up the street and fill up with E10, but I was feeling nostalgic. I drove out to Knotts Island, NC. It was a 30 mile drive, but it was pretty nonetheless. I love driving my cars.
 

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Don't think E15 is available anywhere but for sprint cup cars.
 

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The EPA applied for and got permission to allow E15 in 2001 and newer standard duty road vehicles, but that obviously means warning stickers and alternate E0 or E10 be available at the pump.
 

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Like Mgino, a 30 mile one way trip isn't feasible for me. I was looking over that site last week and have tracked down a couple suppliers/transporters. I'm going to grill them till they spill the beans on possible other stations in the area that aren't on the site.
 
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