In response to concerns expressed by the American Motorcyclist Association and power equipment makers, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued new guidelines to help ensure that motorcyclists and others don't inadvertently use E15 fuel.
E15 is a new fuel blend of 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline that the EPA has approved for use in 2001-and-newer passenger vehicles. The blend isn't approved for use in motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, boats, lawn mowers and other engines, and may even damage them and void warranties.
E10, which is commonly found at gas stations, contains 10 percent ethanol. E0 fuel has no ethanol. Ethanol is grain alcohol produced from crops such as corn that is mixed with gasoline to produce an ethanol-gasoline blend motor fuel.
Last year, Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations, told the EPA that with E15 now coming into the market, AMA members who make a concerted effort to fuel their motorcycles or ATVs with E10-or-less fuel may unknowingly refuel with residual E15 left in a blender-pump hose. A blender pump dispenses different fuel blends through the same hose, such as E10 and E15. When a customer buys E15, as much as a third of a gallon of residual E15 is left in the hose, which can inadvertently get into the next customer's vehicle while fueling with E10.