Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am energy conscious and interested in converting my neighbor's FJC to E-85.
She's waiting for me to buy mine, and in the meantime, do some experimenting on her 2007 auto.

I'm not a salesman for this stuff, not by any stretch--just a curious skeptic. www.chang2e85.com is their website.

Have any of you guys/gals toyed around with this idea and converted, or do some of you consider global warming as beyond the pale and primarily a "tree-hugger" and Al Gore issue for someone else to fix?

I'm interested in doing what I can to conserve energy, and at $1.99 a gallon, it sounds very promising. Units cost $425.00.

Your thoughts and pictures....:zlurking:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,828 Posts
If the engine was E85 certifiable, Toyota would have done it. It takes much more than simply adjusting the computer to run on the lower octane E85 fuel. Hoses, couplings, and many other components need to be changed in order to be truly E85 compatible.

Beside that, the availability of the fuel has limited geographical availability, the decrease in MPG vs. lower cost doesn't create a positive cost benefit to the consumer as well as the reality of it truly being a "green" alternative.

But all that aside, do a search on the subject. There was a forum member who planned on doing the same but I didn't follow the final resolution to his pursuit to get his FJ to be E85 compatible. I would be much more open to converting to an efficient diesel than E85 fuel...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,489 Posts
This weekend on Motorweek, Part Goss talked about all the parts that NEED to be changed to make a non-E85 vehicle, run and LAST on E-85. You really can't do it. Watch the show and you'll be amazed at all the different parts that are included. Easy to do when you are building the vehicle and engine, not so easy when you are trying to retrofit. He said, don't buy all the claims on the E-85 retrofit web sites, the engines and fuel components won't last near as long. I too was surprised at all the different parts but what he said made sense when he described why.

DEWPO
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
319 Posts
I'm not trying to bash anyone, but E85 produces bad crap for the environment and you need to burn more of it do to the lower mpg...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Links from E85 Conversion Kits Change2E85.com

E85 ETHANOL MYTHS

1. E85 Ethanol is corrosive

Yes ethanol is corrosive, but not very much. Gasoline is corrosive too. Ethanol is biodegradable in water. So it has a tendency to contain and attract water. It is not the corrosive properties of ethanol that can cause damage to your vehicle; it is the water which can rust a vehicle’s fuel system from the inside out. Today’s vehicles (since mid 1980s) have fuel systems which are made to withstand corrosive motor fuels and rust from water. Also today’s distilling processes are superior to way back when. We now have better techniques for drying out ethanol or reducing the water content.

On side note, gas contains water too. Ever hear of dry gas?

2. If I put E85 in my gas tank, it will eat it away.

If your car was built in the old days, it was had a lead coated, steel tank. The water in ethanol would cause the tank to rust from the inside out. The government mandated that all gas in the USA contain 10% ethanol to help reduce tail pipe emissions. In the 1980s, automakers made vehicles with fuel systems to be ethanol and rust tolerant. Gas tanks began to contain polymers and Teflon which are extremely durable.

3. If I put E85 ethanol in my non-Flex Fuel vehicle, it will ruin it.

One tank won’t hurt. Some dealers are spreading rumors and charging $300-$3000 for one tank of accidental E85 use. This use may cause misfiring and a rough ride. Your check engine light will come on. If you should accidentally or on purpose put E85 in your vehicle, drain the tank, put in regular gas and all will be well. If you use E85 without a conversion kit or non-Flex Fuel capable vehicle for an extended period, you can damage your engine.

4. Ethanol will burn up my engine.

Ethanol has a lower ignition point than gas. Ethanol has about 115 octane and E85 has 105 octane. It burns cooler and will extend engine life by preventing the burning of engine valves and prevent the build-up of olefins in fuel injectors, keeping the fuel system cleaner.

5. Ethanol will ruin gaskets, seals, rings and more.

This is true. Running 100% ethanol or alcohol in an engine can cause damage. Ethanol has no lubricating properties. People who run E100 in their vehicles will add special oil to their ethanol to act as a lubricant to the fuel pump, injectors and the top engine. Those who don’t add the oil end up destroying their engine.

That is why we use E85. The 15% gasoline acts as a lubricant to all vital components and allows a long and trouble free engine life.

Today's vehicles are built to withstand the corrosive effects of water in ethanol and gasoline. Any vehicle built since 1985 will have no ethanol related issues. Older vehicles that used more steel in the fuel systems or cork gaskets will have issues from long term exposure.

6. E85 will eat my rubber fuel lines.

This is another myth from the old days. Rubber technology has significantly advanced so the concerns of a 20 year old car or newer having issues like this are extremely rare. Plus the 15% gas will help keep lines lubricated.

7. E85 will destroy my fuel pump.

E85 won’t destroy your fuel pump. If you convert a high mileage vehicle to Flex Fuel, the E85 will cause the sediment in the gas tank to dissolve and then get sucked up by the fuel pump. It is believed that this sediment may shorten the life of the pump of your higher mileage vehicle (100,000+). Fuel pumps are not expensive to replace. After thousands of conversion kits sold, we have had our first report of a failed fuel pump. The vehicle was a 1994 Audi with 200,000 miles on it. It was the original fuel pump. The owner blamed E85. His mechanic said it was just time. A fuel pump that lasted this long is impressive.

We do not recommend using E85 in your vehicle without an E85 conversion kit.

8. It takes more than a gallon of energy to make a gallon of E85.

This was true at one point in time. Today’s advanced technology and distilling processes actually create considerably more units of ethanol than units of energy used. The processes continue to advance and the ratio will continue to increase.

9. E85 Ethanol is worse for the environment than gas.


There have been some people who have published reports stating that E85 is worse than gas for the environment. They have yet to show any scientific proof or case studies that support their claims. Because E85 is cleaner than conventional gasoline, it emits less hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and hydrogen. E85 reduces carbon monoxide emissions by as much as 70 percent — and less carbon monoxide helps reduce ozone formation and greenhouse gas levels. According to EPA, gasoline is the largest source of manmade carcinogens. Ethanol reduces overall toxic pollution by diluting harmful compounds found in gasoline such as benzene and other aromatics.

10. Using E85 ethanol will get 50% less mileage per tank.

There are some conversion kits out there that are poorly made and may cause extremely poor fuel economy. These kits will never be able to be EPA compliant, yet they continue to sell on the market. The Full Flex Gold has reported a maximum of 15% reduction in fuel economy in low compression engines and is EPA compliant. Some high compression engines like sports cars and turbo charged engines are reporting 3% - 5% reduction in fuel economy.

11. Vehicles need more E85 ethanol so there is less power.

It is true that a vehicle does require more E85 than regular gas since the amount of energy per unit of ethanol is less than that of gas. However E85 is 105 octane. Gas comes in 85, 89 and 91 octane. The 105 octane of E85 will not only eliminate knocks and pings, it will give your car more power than gas. It is especially beneficial here in Colorado heading into the mountains.

12. Won't E85 production deplete human and animal food supplies?

No, actually the production of ethanol from corn uses only the starch of the corn kernel, all of the valuable protein, minerals and nutrients remain. One bushel of corn produces about 2.7 gallons of ethanol AND 11.4 pounds of gluten feed (20% protein) AND 3 pounds of gluten meal (60% protein) AND 1.6 pounds of corn oil.

13. Ethanol does not benefit farmers.

The ethanol industry opens a new market for corn growers, allowing them to enjoy greater profitability. Studies have shown that corn prices in areas near ethanol plants tend to be 5 to 10 cents per bushel higher than in other areas. This additional income helps cut the costs of farm programs and add vitality to rural economies. The additional profit potential for farmers created by ethanol production allows more farmers to stay in business — helping ensure adequate food supplies in the future. Ethanol production also creates jobs, many of which are in rural communities where good jobs are hard to come by. A 2005 study by LECG found the ethanol industry powered the U.S. economy by creating more than 147,000 jobs, boosting U.S. household income by $4.4 billion and reducing the U.S. trade deficit by $5.1 billion by eliminating the need to import 143.3 million barrels of oil. Those kinds of numbers help farmers and all Americans.

14. Ethanol production wastes corn that could be used to feed a hungry world.

Corn used for ethanol production is field corn typically used to feed livestock. Wet mill ethanol production facilities, also known as corn refineries, also produce starch, corn sweeteners, and corn oil — all products that are used as food ingredients for human consumption. Ethanol production also results in the production of distiller’s grains and gluten feed — both of which are fed to livestock, helping produce high-quality meat products for distribution domestically and abroad. There is no shortage of corn. In 2004, U.S. farmers produced a record 11.8 billion bushel corn harvest — and some 1.3 billion bushels (about 11 percent) were used in ethanol production. Additionally, the 2005 crop was among the largest on record. 2007 will yield the largest corn crop since the 1940s. In other words, there is still room to significantly grow the ethanol market without limiting the availability of corn. Steadily increasing corn yields and the improved ability of other nations to grow corn also make it clear that ethanol production can continue to grow without affecting the food supply.


Comment: the manufacturers of the converstion kit, and the growers of crops, are in bed with each other. I believe a more independent test and the results need to be displayed, and debated, before reasonable, long-term conclusions can be made. I'm looking into other conversion kits by impartial analysis.
:indifferent:


:rocket:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Department of Energy Search Results Ethanol Conversion Process

Ethanol Flexible Fuel Vehicle Conversions: :habbobuggs:

Rising gasoline prices and concerns about climate change have greatly increased public interest in ethanol use. Vehicle manufacturers currently offer ethanol flex-fuel vehicles (FFVs) in a wide variety of makes and models at little or no extra cost. In spite of the availability of new and used FFVs, many consumers are curious about the prospects for converting their existing gasoline vehicles to operate on ethanol.

Background
Regulatory Requirements
Certification Process Overview
Status of Ethanol Conversion Certifications
On-board Diagnostics (OBD) Approval Letter
Resources
Background

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) implements regulations under the Clean Air Act that require certification of new vehicles as being compliant with emissions requirements (see the Code of Federal Regulations, Title 40, Parts 85 and 86). Certification is granted to the manufacturer for specific vehicle configurations operating on specific fuels according to an established test protocol. Installing or modifying a fuel system to allow a vehicle to operate on a fuel other than that for which it was originally certified is considered tampering—a violation of federal regulations that carries a significant fine. There are currently no certified aftermarket conversion systems that would allow a conventional gasoline vehicle to operate on E85.

EPA does have a process by which manufacturers of conversion systems can obtain a Certificate of Conformity for converted vehicles. In recent years, manufacturers of natural gas and propane conversions have used this process to certify several vehicles for operation on these fuels. This process certifies the converted vehicle—not the conversion system by itself. Several ethanol conversion manufacturers have approached the EPA about certifying their equipment, and EPA is walking them through the process.

Back to Top

Regulatory Requirements:

Regulations requiring aftermarket fuel converters to certify their conversions are found in 40 CFR Parts 85 and 86. Conversion systems are not considered to be a type of "device," as has been suggested by some manufacturers, which might otherwise allow converters to sell their systems without obtaining EPA certificates. This situation is sometimes the case with devices such as high-performance air filters, free-flow mufflers and exhaust systems, and some other aftermarket accessories. Because of the complexity of certifying an ethanol FFV, including meeting EPA's on-board diagnostics (OBD) requirements, EPA works with each company interested in certifying an ethanol FFV conversion system.

Back to Top

Certification Process Overview:


Certification of fuel conversions closely follows the process original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) use when certifying new model year vehicles. For new vehicles, EPA issues certificates for specific vehicle groupings, called an engine family or test group. A test group, designated by the OEM, contains vehicles with common design elements (such as the number of cylinders or a specific engine and transmission configuration) and similar emission components (such as a similar size catalyst and precious metal loading). There are many test groups for a particular OEM for a given model year, and there are often different test groups for what might appear to be the same kind of vehicle. For example, a pickup truck may be available with either two-wheel or four-wheel drive or with different engine and transmission combinations, each of which might require a separate series of tests and individual Certificates of Conformity.

The process for ethanol conversions takes a similar approach. Each test group of a specific vehicle type with a specific conversion system is tested and considered for certification. The tests ensure that the converted vehicle meets emission standards when operated on any blend of ethanol and gasoline, from 0 percent ethanol to 85 percent ethanol (E85), for the full useful life of the vehicle. It also ensures that the OEM's gasoline vehicle components and materials will be compatible with E85 throughout the life of the vehicle.

There is no "one size fits all" category or universal EPA certificate for a conversion system that would allow it to be legally installed on any vehicle type or engine configuration. How the specific fuel and emission control systems work together determines compliance with EPA emission standards for a particular vehicle.

If a company wants to sell conversion systems in California, similar certification procedures must be followed to obtain approval from the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

Emission Standards
Emission standards are fuel neutral, which means that the same emission requirements apply no matter the fuel type. Therefore, to prove compliance with emissions standards, converted vehicles must demonstrate they meet emission standards when using the alternative fuel. For ethanol conversions, conversion companies must prove emissions compliance with exhaust standards when vehicles are operating on gasoline as well as E85.

OBD Approval Letter
A vehicle's on-board diagnostic (OBD) system performs constant checks to ensure that all emissions-related components operate correctly. The OBD system notifies drivers of any issues or problems by illuminating a malfunction indicator light on the dashboard (sometimes called the check-engine light). Meeting EPA OBD requirements is a fundamental part of the certification process, and these requirements are described in detail in EPA's certification regulations.

Obtaining an OBD approval letter from EPA is just one step in the overall certification process and is not by itself an approval from EPA for the sale of conversion systems. The approval letter only documents that EPA has reviewed the operation of the fuel-converted vehicle's OBD system, including any necessary supporting data, and finds that it meets EPA's OBD regulatory requirements.

Fuel conversions sold in California must receive an OBD approval from CARB.
Certification Steps
The FFV conversion company and EPA meet to lay out the process for certifying one or more vehicle test groups.
EPA supplies references to guidance documents and assists the converter in obtaining an example Application for Certification from a fuel converter and the Application for Certification for the OEM test group that the converter desires to convert to an ethanol FFV. This provides both a sample of the required application, plus baseline data on the vehicle test group that's being converted.
The conversion company initiates the appropriate emissions testing on gasoline as well as ethanol test fuels at an emissions laboratory that can perform standard EPA tests.
The conversion company evaluates OBD system impacts and submits a description of the OBD system and proof of compliance with EPA's OBD regulatory requirements.
Upon acceptance, EPA issues an OBD approval letter. This letter becomes an integral component of the Application for Certification. (See the OBD Approval Letter section for details.)
The conversion company submits to EPA comprehensive emissions testing data as part of the complete Application for Certification (for a Certificate of Conformity for the specific test group to be fuel converted).
EPA may require confirmatory emissions testing at its laboratory in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
EPA reviews the application to ensure that all requirements are met before issuing a Certificate of Conformity.
As mentioned previously, a similar process is required by CARB to obtain an Executive Order (the CARB equivalent of an EPA certificate) for sales in California.

Back to Top

Status of Ethanol Conversion Certifications
As of the date of this bulletin, neither the EPA nor CARB have certified any ethanol FFV conversion systems. A few companies have obtained EPA OBD approval letters (one step in the process), but no certificates have been issued for aftermarket conversions to ethanol. The current certification status of ethanol fuel converters may be obtained by contacting EPA staff (see the contact information contained in the EPA presentation referenced at the end of this bulletin).

Some companies have developed ethanol conversion systems for use in other countries where emissions requirements and safety standards are different and EPA and CARB regulations do not apply. However, it is illegal to use these systems in the United States unless an EPA Certificate of Conformity and, if appropriate, a CARB Executive Order have been obtained. Some systems are offered via the Internet or other U.S. outlets. To be sure that a conversion system is legal for use in the United States, consumers should always ask the supplier for a copy of the EPA Certificate of Conformity or the CARB Executive Order that verifies compliance for use on their specific vehicles.

Back to Top

Resources
Some of the following documents are available as Adobe PDFs. Download Adobe Reader.
:)
Presentations:
Certification Process for Alternative Fuel Converters, Marty Reineman, EPA
Vehicle Changes for E85 Conversion, Coleman Jones, General Motor
Technology Information:
Flexible Fuel Vehicles: Providing a Renewable Fuel Choice (PDF 295 KB)
EPA Guidance:
EPA Light-Duty Vehicle and Engine Emission Certification Home Page
EPA Alternative Fuel Conversion (PDF 149 KB)
EPA Approval of OBD II Systems on Aftermarket Alternative Fuel Conversions (PDF 100 KB)
EPA Certificates of Conformity
EPA Contact List for Fuel Converters (PDF 31 KB)
EPA Converter General Guidance Letters
EPA Filing Forms and Fees
EPA Laboratory List (PDF 31 KB)
Federal Regulations:
Code of Federal Regulations, Title 40, Parts 85 and 86

Typical governmental regulations....fodder for the E85 enthusiast.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,828 Posts
Take the info, convert your neighbors vehicle and keep us up to date on how the process goes. But, not in my FJ, not today, tomorrow or ever. If Toyota made the statement that it was "E85 compatible", then I may consider it, if such a fuel were available without having to burn more of the fuel just to find a station. But, until then, I'll let you be the guinea pig for the rest of us...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Hey FARLAN-

You are so lucky living in Colorado. It has the cheapest E85 at only $1.99 a gallon. The change2E85.com guys are going to be in Boulder on Saturday giving away a free E85 conversion kit - Click on the "win a conversion kit" link on their website.

I know a lot about motorfuels so I am going to dispell some of the myths that are being shared on this thread.

If the engine was E85 certifiable, Toyota would have done it. It takes much more than simply adjusting the computer to run on the lower octane E85 fuel. Hoses, couplings, and many other components need to be changed in order to be truly E85 compatible.
The Toyotas that we all love are Flex Fuel capable in Brazil. They have not added the software to the computer to make it Flex in the USA. That is the only difference. The corrosive myth is a carry over from methanol which is nasty stuff. People are applying the methanol attributes to ethanol. Your tank, lines, rubber, injectors, etc are all able to handle E85 ethanol. Older than 1980 may have some minor issues.

This weekend on Motorweek, Part Goss talked about all the parts that NEED to be changed to make a non-E85 vehicle, run and LAST on E-85. You really can't do it. Watch the show and you'll be amazed at all the different parts that are included. Easy to do when you are building the vehicle and engine, not so easy when you are trying to retrofit. He said, don't buy all the claims on the E-85 retrofit web sites, the engines and fuel components won't last near as long. I too was surprised at all the different parts but what he said made sense when he described why.
DEWPO
Motorweek is an underfunded program on PBS. Guess who is a major sponsor of Motorweek? General Motors!!! I read the article and Motorweek did absolutely no testing to back GM's claims. GM hates the conversion kits. GM wants people to buy new cars, not convert. The folks down in Brazil have been using these conversion kits for over 20 years. I have not been able to find any negitive information on the web from the good folks or hot women in Brazil. I'm pretty sure that they have internet down there and if E85 and conversion kits were bad, they would have been posting in threads like this one. If the change2E85 guys had deep pockets like GM, I'm sure that they would give a kit to Motorweek and a fat sponsor check and would get glowing reviews from them. It's amazing how money can buy endorsements.

I've converted all of my vehicles and they all run better on E85.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,657 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Boulder Colorado & Ethanol E-85 Saturday 10-27

Dave Justice & Forum Members,

"Motorweek is an underfunded program on PBS. Guess who is a major sponsor of Motorweek? General Motors!!! I read the article and Motorweek did absolutely no testing to back GM's claims. GM hates the conversion kits. GM wants people to buy new cars, not convert. The folks down in Brazil have been using these conversion kits for over 20 years. I have not been able to find any negitive information on the web from the good folks or hot women in Brazil. I'm pretty sure that they have internet down there and if E85 and conversion kits were bad, they would have been posting in threads like this one. If the change2E85 guys had deep pockets like GM, I'm sure that they would give a kit to Motorweek and a fat sponsor check and would get glowing reviews from them. It's amazing how money can buy endorsements.

I've converted all of my vehicles and they all run better on E85."


Thanks bro, I searched and found the same information. Not only that, but you are successfully running Ethanol through your Toyotas. Brazil, with huge sugar cane production and biomass, is an awsome case study for the rest of the world. In fact, today, I attended a lecture at the National Renewable Energy Labs in Golden, CO. Part of their "power lunch" series. It was an eye opener and shed new light on the possibilities for alternative sources of fuel. My former Dodge Ram 2500 Cummins turbo diesel, ran on B-20 up to B-99 blends of locally made biodiesel. She ran smoother (but was .30 cents more per gallon). So, I joined the Denver Biodiesel Coop and bought it for nearly a dollar less.

Anyway, I wish more people would take alternative fuels more seriously, and take heart on issues of global warming. CNN ran a 2-night special called, Planet in Peril Planet in Peril: Environmental Coverage - Special Reports from CNN.com. Global climate change is no joke and alternative fuels is only the beginning. Thanks for your response.

BTW: I will be in Boulder, Colorado (CU Buffs!!) on saturday for the E85 Conversion Kits Change2E85.com expo, and converter give away. I invite all curious looky-loos to check into it, and attend if possible.

Crisis is here, and the time is now.....:rocket:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,571 Posts
I like to connserve and do my part but Al Gore is a pud!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Hey FARLAN!

Great info! I've bought several kits from the change2E85 guys and couldn't be happier. I called Dave the owner and let him know about this thread. Do me a favor and drop my name in the raffle box. I'm buying a new truck for winter. Just remember Dave Justice like the baseball player.

Dave said that the FJ is a harder install. The intake plenum needs to come off inorder to gain access to the injectors and the polarity is reversed. I was amazed that he knew that right away. He said that they have done many FJs already. He said a good Toyota mechanic can do the job in about 1 hour and Joes like you and me should allow for 2.

For those who don't live in the area, he said that GearHead Radio and Drive Radio will be giving away a kit too. This past Saturday they did an E85 special and they are going to do another E85 special this Saturday. Out of towners can listen through streaming audio and call in to win a kit or ask the host ASE Techs about using E85 in a non-flex vehicle. Donny, one of the hosts uses E85 in a 400 horsepower 4.6L Corba powered Focus. Information on the radio show can be found on change2E85.com.

Dave also said that he is going to post a 50 minute clip on a podcast where they address that conversion kits and E85 is safe in a non-flex vehicle. When I get the link, I'll post it here.

how do they run better on E85??
E85 makes vehicles run smoother, quieter, cleaner, cheaper and cooler. Carbon is the real killer of engines. The low carbon content of E85 keeps the engine cleaner. It burns slower so it is smoother and quieter. E85 is cheaper to buy. I'm ahead everytime I fill up. The 105 octane works great in my Audi S4 Bi-Turbo. The lower ignition temp makes the engine run cooler.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
247 Posts
I'm sorry, but anyone who thinks that using ethanol for fuel will somehow deplete our food supplies has not been paying attention. Brasil has been neerly fuel self sufficient for something like 30 years. And they aren't burning corn. They get it from sugar cane. You can get ethanol from anything you can get sugar from. Even wood cullulose and citrus peels are showing potential. Can you imagine how many cars can be fueled from all the peeled cirus from citrus producers?

My issue is that same as many peoples. There's only one or two places to get it here that I know of. It's easier to get 100% biodiesel in Portland right now. And a LOT of people here are driving Volvos, Mercedes, VWs, and even a few Hilus Toyotas on it. That's what I wish Toyota would do. I really prefer the touque a good diesel produces, and a good diesel engine will last a lot longer. If I could find a way to put a Cummins engine mated to an Allison trans in my FJ, it would be done (after I won the lottery!).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,253 Posts
I want to convert to it just so I can go fill up.... The nearest one to my house is about 2 miles away.... AT THE HUMMER DEALERSHIP.... HAHAHAHA go figure..
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top