Double the Enjoyment with an Eco-Friendly Ethanol Motorcycle Ride
Ethanol motorcycles offer an excellent way of saving money on fuel for your motorcycle and an effective way of reducing air pollution. Although electric or hybrid motorcycles are more ideal eco-friendly options, you can save money on fuel without having to spend a dime on a new motorcycle by converting it to an ethanol motorcycle.
Using e10 fuel or ethanol fuel made up of 10% ethanol and 90% gasoline to power up motorcycles is now a common practice. The presence of ethanol helps to reduce the carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions of regular gasoline.
The widespread use of ethanol fuel, which is a plant-based renewable fuel, also helps keep the price of petroleum from continuously rising. This is why governments are now encouraging motorcycle owners into using e10 ethanol for motorcycle engine. You will notice, however, that when you use e10, your motorcycle will consume slightly more fuel than it did when you used conventional gasoline. This is because ethanol has a lower energy level compared to gasoline.
But the reduced fuel efficiency is just the tip of the iceberg. Many motorcycle owners have expressed concerns about some threats that using e10 poses to their motorcycles.
What Can Be Done to Reduce the Damage of e10?
Using the e10 is generally safe for your motorcycle, although some motorcycle owners are concerned about the negative effects of ethanol, especially due to the corrosive properties of the said substance.
Newer motorcycles or motorcycles whose fuel systems have already been rebuilt can run on e10 with no problem.
Older motorcycles with their original fuel systems, however, may be more prone to corrosion when using e10. In such cases, replacing the rubber fuel lines, seals, gaskets, and fuel filters will help prevent corrosion and its negative effects on your engine. You should also use a gas tank sealer before you use ethanol fuel.
Aside from that, using e10 is not recommended for those who don’t use their motorcycles regularly. Leaving ethanol in your motorcycle’s fuel system can cause trouble to your engine. This is because condensation can cause the water content of ethanol to separate and to gravitate towards the bottom of the tank where it will be picked up first but won’t be able to make your motorcycle run.
To reduce the damage or threats that e10 poses, do not store your motorcycle for long periods of time with the tank full of ethanol fuel. If you plan to store your motorcycle, be sure to drain the tank first. Cleaning the tank to remove dirt and sludge before filling it up with ethanol will also help prevent damage.
Ethanol Motorcycle and e15 Fuel :
Recently, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has allowed the portion of ethanol to be increased to 15%, resulting in a mixture dubbed as e15.
The state of Minnesota has also proposed the increase of ethanol levels to 20%. However, the AMA or American Motorcyclist Association has expressed concerns about the continuous increase, saying that this could cause certain issues in motorcycles, including degradation in performance, reduced fuel economy, and early damage or failure of the engine.
The AMA is requesting for conclusive studies that can prove that a 20% ethanol blend will not inflict any damage on motorcycle engines and will not cause increased nitrogen oxide emissions from motorcycle engines before it will support the proposal of the state of Minnesota.
Ethanol Motorcycle and e85 Fuel
But what about using e85 for your motorcycle? E85 ethanol fuel consists of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline. Since it is largely ethanol, it is way more environment-friendly than the lower blends of ethanol fuel. The use of e85 does not necessarily face the same concerns as the use of e15 or e20 ethanol blends, mainly because e85 requires a flex fuel conversion process that makes using it safe for motorcycle engines.
However, motorcycle manufacturers are not yet manufacturing motorcycles than can run on e85. Thus, it is strictly not recommended to use e85 in any motorcycle unless the motorcycle has been converted to run on flex fuel.
If you use e85 on a non flex fuel motorcycle, it can lead to severe damage to the seals and hoses throughout your fuel system. It can also remove the lubricating agents along your engine’s cylinder walls. This is due to the natural corrosive properties of ethanol.
How to Convert Your Motorcycle to Run on Ethanol
If you’re interested in using the clean-burning higher blend e85 fuel, you will need an ethanol conversion for motorcycle. This can be easily done with the use of e85 conversion kits for motorcycle, which are now widely available.
Several companies, such as Change2E85, are now providing e85 conversion kits for various machines, such as motorcycles, cars, boats, jet skis, snowmobiles, ATVs, and so on. Just make sure to choose the right conversion kit specifically designed for the type of engine your motorcycle has.