The Effects Of Ethanol (VIDEO) – UnderhoodService
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The Effects Of Ethanol (VIDEO)

Non-E85-compatible pumps may suffer premature brush and commutator wear. This video is sponsored by Carter Fuel Systems.


Most gasoline in the United States contains ethanol, which oxygenates the fuel and reduces air pollution. E10 is themost common ethanol and gasoline blend, but there isalso E15 and E85 that can be found in cars on the road today.


E10 is gasoline with 10% ethanol content, while E15 is gasoline with 15% content and so forth. E85 can be used in flexible fuel vehicles, which are designed to operate on any blend of gas and ethanol up to 85%. However, E85 fuel has some significant issues associated with it.

Corrosion, reduced lubricity and material breakdown are all common when this fuel is being used in vehicles that cannot properly accommodate it. NonE85-compatible pumps may suffer premature brush and commutator wear, corrosion of commutator brush wires, swelling of non-metallic materials, and pumping section component wear. To combat this wear, Carter fuel pumps use carbon material (versus copper material) for the commutator pads. This eliminates oxidation and high electrical erosion.


The binder used to manufacture the carbon brush and commutators is also ethanol compatible. Carter also nickel-plates the carbon brush wire strands.In addition, ethanol-compatible materials prevent the swelling of non-metallic components.

To prevent corrosion of the commutator brush wires, Carter plates the copper brush strands with nickel. Carter also adds wear prevention coating to the pumping section components or utilizes alternate materials to minimize wear.

Keep in mind, it is very important to always use the gasoline rating that is recommended for your vehicle by the manufacturer. Consult your owner’s manual for this information and do not use E85 in your vehicle if it is not a flex fuel vehicle.


Carter has much more information like this on their website, make sure to check out all their fuel related articles for the latest news and industry trends.

This video is sponsored by Carter Fuel Systems.

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