E15 Fuel

The MRF (Motorcycle Riders Foundation) and the AMA (American Motorcyclists Association) have been very active trying to prevent our government from increasing the ethanol content of our gasoline over the last few years. That is because fuel with more that 10% ethanol content (by volume) is ‘poison’ to our motorcycle’s engines. They all advise that use of fuel with more that 10% ethanol (or any grain alcohol) invalidates the warranties.

President Trump has given approval to the EPA to alter its rules to allow production and sale of E15 (15% ethanol) all year in all states. The EPA campaigned for this based on the claim that it is good for our environment and for our economy. President Trump’s decision is based on those claims. The EPA says they will have the rules’ alteration in place by May of this year.

To us, this means we will have to be extremely careful every time we fill our tanks. We will have to carefully read the labeling on whatever pump we are using. If it is a ‘blender pump’ that dispenses fuels with higher than 10% ethanol, we have to avoid it. This is because some of the previously pumped fuel
remains in the pipes and hose and ends up in our tank. This could be as much as a gallon of fuel.

Labelling is about to become confusing just to make this more fun. We will see labels including:

  • E10 (10% alcohol by volume)
  • E15 (15% alcohol by volume)
  • E85 (15% alcohol by volume)


  • Unleaded 88 (I have no idea how they came up with this one, but it is too much alcohol)

What can we do?

First of all, be careful – very careful.

Secondly let your federal representatives know that you don’t like this. Write to them. Call them. Email them. Tell them that this threatens your “pursuit of happiness.”

They have all heard from the AMA and MRF – repeatedly.

They have all heard the facts that use of alcohol in fuel does not carry the environmental benefits originally claimed BUT they are, apparently, more focused on the economic benefits they believe are there. The AMA and MRF have refuted those claims as well. I’ll not elaborate here but you can go to the AMA and MRF websites to learn more about that.

I’ll keep you posted as I am able.

Mike – the Safety Guy