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Local Car Expert Says Ethanol-Added Gasoline Can Damage Older Engines

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John Ostapkovich John Ostapkovich
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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – EPA approval of putting more ethanol in gasoline, a rise from 10-15%, creates more problems for owners of older cars.

The EPA approves E15 as it’s called for model year 2001 cars or newer, but there are a lot of older ones still on the road.

Dave Cox, manager at The Engine Shop in Upper Darby, says some older car engines were built to use higher octane leaded gas, “And the compressions were a lot higher because of the performance. Now what’s happening, the more ethanol they do, it’s called detonation, where it’s not running quite right and what happens is if it detonates for long enough it’ll actually melt holes right through the pistons.”

He recommends older cars use premium for the higher octane and says additives and very expensive racing fuel can help. Not every older car is just for classic car shows.

“I have one customer, his everyday driver is a 1965 Chevelle, every day, even though the winter.”

Cox says E15 will magnify the damage ethanol does to older engines.

Reported by John Ostapkovich, KYW Newsradio 1060

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