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Old 06-13-2015, 12:26 PM   #11
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On my recent race across USA and back I noticed my mileage increase while staying at 62 mph and using non-ethanol gas which means premium gas. Increase was 14+ mpg average over 7,000 + miles with full pickup bed and full trailer.
This brings up an interesting point. Does premium gas give better MPG when towing?
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Old 06-13-2015, 12:48 PM   #12
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The short time I've had “Escaping Reality” the average is right at 15 MPG, I don't drive over 60 MPH, use CC and never OD when towing. But then I”m an Ole Man whose reflexes aren't as fast as the young'uns.
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Old 06-13-2015, 01:02 PM   #13
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J Mac,

See this Pump facts - Marketplace - CBC News and then watch the video that you can find on the right side of the page.
Basically, premium gas is a waste of money if your vehicle is not designed to use it.
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Old 06-13-2015, 01:17 PM   #14
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Mine requires at least 89 octane or midrange, at a minimum, so it benefits my motor.
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Old 06-13-2015, 01:51 PM   #15
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Non-ethanol gas should increase mileage, as ethanol has less energy content per volume than gasoline. This would be true at lower octane rating as well: regular gas with ethanol vs. regular without it, assuming you can find regular w/o ethanol, that is.
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Old 06-13-2015, 03:44 PM   #16
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This brings up an interesting point. Does premium gas give better MPG when towing?
Depends - what do you mean by "premium"? Traditionally it meant simply higher octane, and that makes no difference to fuel economy in most cases. More recently it also means more detergent content, which again makes no difference unless you have something like an injector clogging problem. Finally it now means no alchohol content in some cases, and that does matter... but not enough to justify the price difference.

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Basically, premium gas is a waste of money if your vehicle is not designed to use it.
Generally, I agree. My van only needs regular, and that's all I have ever used for 170,000 kilometres.

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Non-ethanol gas should increase mileage, as ethanol has less energy content per volume than gasoline. This would be true at lower octane rating as well: regular gas with ethanol vs. regular without it, assuming you can find regular w/o ethanol, that is.
Absolutely correct. In Alberta all regular now has 10% ethanol, so the only way to avoid it is to go premium. Since 10% ethanol can only make a few percent difference in fuel economy, the big cost increase for premium gas (typically $0.10/L or so) can't be justified on this basis.
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Old 06-13-2015, 03:50 PM   #17
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Non-ethanol gas should increase mileage, as ethanol has less energy content per volume than gasoline. This would be true at lower octane rating as well: regular gas with ethanol vs. regular without it, assuming you can find regular w/o ethanol, that is.
That part is correct. Non-Ethanol fuel provides more energy. So, better efficiency. My biggest issue with Ethanol added fuel isn't the energy potential though -- its the harm it causes engines and fuel systems. Manufacturers spend alot of time and money modifying their designs so that the harm is lessened, but in many cases, particularly with power equipment or generators, you have to doctor up the fuel. The biggest issue seems to be that Ethanol and water combine, and that varnishing and residue buildup occur.

The previous point Glenn made is also correct. There are a ton of studies which prove that those who only use the highest octane fuel are in many cases wasting money. High performance vehicles with engines designed specifically for 91-93 octane do benefit. The rest, not so much.
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Old 06-13-2015, 04:05 PM   #18
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That part is correct. Non-Ethanol fuel provides more energy. So, better efficiency.
Well, better economy, but not better efficiency (conversion of fuel energy to useful output).

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My biggest issue with Ethanol added fuel isn't the energy potential though -- its the harm it causes engines and fuel systems. Manufacturers spend alot of time and money modifying their designs so that the harm is lessened, but in many cases, particularly with power equipment or generators, you have to doctor up the fuel. The biggest issue seems to be that Ethanol and water combine, and that varnishing and residue buildup occur.
Since ethanol has been in use in cars for quite a while, they are now designed for it and I don't have a concern for recent vehicles. Power equipment is a more of a concern, as it tends to be used for many years. "Premium" fuel without ethanol is the obvious solution, and since a relatively small volume of fuel is used in stuff such as lawn mowers and recreational generators, the cost shouldn't be a big issue.

This is a lot like the use of lead in gasoline. When it was first eliminated there was a genuine concern for older engines. Now, decades later, those racers and aircraft engine manufacturers that say they still need lead have no excuse and should just upgrade or retire their old crap.

Yes, alcohol absorbs water... but thats why it (methanol usually) is used as gas line antifreeze.
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Old 06-13-2015, 04:39 PM   #19
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. "Premium" fuel without ethanol is the obvious solution, and since a relatively small volume of fuel is used in stuff such as lawn mowers and recreational generators, the cost shouldn't be a big issue..
Alas, ethanol free fuel is impossible to find here Brian -- believe me, I've looked. I think it differs greatly from your analogy about leaded fuel in one key respect: it didnt really provide a benefit to the engine. Of course, ethanol fuels have been around for a long time. Even Henry Ford used corn based fuel. But plain gasoline works better. Its everywhere now because of other pressures: the reduction of oil imports, the desire to go "green" or "renewable" or a host of other reasons. The lead worked as an anti-knock additive which helped the older engines run better. Ethanol just doesnt make any modern passenger car run better.
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Old 06-13-2015, 09:56 PM   #20
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Lead was added to gasoline to lubricate the valve train. Valve guides and seats.
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