Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Tank #12

I filled up at Meijer this morning. Here are the stats:

Price E85: $3.74 a gallon (YIKES!)
Price 87 Octane gas: $4.24 a gallon

Gallons E85: 5.998
Gallons 87 Octane: 9.004
Gallons left from tank #11 (@~38.501% ethanol): 1.398

I'm assuming that the E85 is 79% ethanol, 100 octane.

Ethanol content of tank #12: 37.670%
Octane of tank #12: 92.222

Tank 11 finished with a mileage of 24.2. Average speed was 31 mph.

Price of E85 is insane. I'm pretty sure that this is the most I've ever paid for it. Come on, Meijer, give us a break! My spreadsheet is still showing that E85 should be about $3.10 or so.

1 comment:

Scott said...

Ethanol update. I took the first step today and started running my own ethanol blend.

I went to the Conoco/Phillips station that sells E85 to try my first "at the pump blending". Based on this nifty calculator I found online I was able to plug in my existing ethanol percentage (which is 10%, all regular gas in the USA is E10) and my tank size (17 gal) and what I pumped in which was 3 gallons of E85 and 3.33 gallons of Regular unleaded (E10).

The net result: 23.2% ethanol (or E23)

The car is running normally and has not self-destructed. I'll drive for about 5-10 gallons worth of mileage, both highway and city, and then check my MPG and then go back and add more E-85 until I get to about 35-40% next fill and see how it runs.

Price difference:

E-85: $3.099 gallon
Regular Unleaded (E10): $3.909 gallon

Net savings per gallon: $0.81

Savings: $2.43 on this gas-up, or $13.77 per tank if I ran straight E85. Regular unleaded gas locally around the corner is $4.01, so it's actually cheaper to go the 6 miles to the Conoco in Missouri rather than gas up in Kansas it seems.

This is proving to be an interesting experiment. If I can get up to 50% E85 without throwing a CEL (check engine light) I'll probably consider purchasing one of the many aftermarket devices that let me run higher concentrations of ethanol in the car. Everything I've read on these devices is that they're all basically the same. Based on spot readings of the percentages of ethanol to gas it detects it then tells the ECU to push more fuel through the injectors into the combustion chamber. This makes up for the lower BTUs from e-85 vs e-10 - you burn more of it, which is why your MPG drops 10-25% based on how much ethanol you're using.

Performance: The car seemed to be more responsive, probably from the octane boost. The car runs best on premium, but has been on regular unleaded (87 octane) gas since I got it last August. E85 is 105 Octane, so a 30-40% blend might provide me with some additional performance boosts on the open highway.

More to come,

-zen