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KRAZYK 01-09-2011 02:25 PM

Flexfuel drawbacks?
So I found a place in town that sells E85 ethanol.. So I ran my tank almost dry (20 miles left in the tank) and went to fill up. $2.30 a gallon compared to $3.00 for the cheapest gas. Filled up for $55 so I saved myself around $10 by going with E85.

I didn't notice any power loss but I did notice that my MPGs seemed to stay consistently lower then when I was running regular gasoline. Anyone else notice anything like this?

I know its not an easy thing to test because my driving is split pretty randomly between city and highway driving. I might be going crazy but I feel like the "sliding" MPG bar on the display seems to stay around 15-16 even on highway - on Gas it was hovering around 20+ more often.

CdnoilRAM 01-09-2011 02:35 PM

I wouldn't trust the computer when you make a fuel change. I'd run the tank down a couple of times and calculate the miles vs gallons filled.

KRAZYK 01-09-2011 03:00 PM


Originally Posted by CdnoilRAM (Post 406026)
I wouldn't trust the computer when you make a fuel change. I'd run the tank down a couple of times and calculate the miles vs gallons filled.

yeah that's another reason im asking.. I've calculated 15-16 mpg since ive owned the truck even when it tells me I get 18-19 on the highway.

Ive been doing some research on E85 and although E85 contains a higher octane, most engines do not burn it efficiently and the result is lower MPG. This can be solved if your engine is tuned to run the higher octane fuels.. SO my new question is.. Are there tuners out there that give the option for E85? or ~98 octane.

RamTex 01-09-2011 05:09 PM

You should make more power on E85. Hypertech sells a E85 tuner that would suit you just fine. Here is the link Diablosport has some good units also. Here is the link Jetchip makes some units not too sure on them but have seen them used on TV. Here is the link

916Timmy 01-09-2011 05:42 PM

You will normally get about 12-25% less mileage with E85. Sounds about right. It has less energy in it than pure gasoline

Rec 26 01-09-2011 06:04 PM

Main thing I have against the flex fuel engines isn't the MPG... it's the towing. Regardless of what axle ratio you have, it's 7,300 for max trailer for the quad cab.

KRAZYK 01-09-2011 06:14 PM

With a programer tuning the engine for e85 or 100-105 octane, do you think I would be able to get close to gasoline MPGs? E85 is appealing to me because of the higher octane + cleaner burning fuel, but I'm only going to use it if it will save me money.

Toms Blue Ram 1500 01-09-2011 06:22 PM

These are all good questions . I myself have had no experience with E85 and I haven't seen much discussion here about it neither . You may be the first one to experiment with it . Keep us posted on your results .

GPSHSLAX 01-11-2011 10:11 PM

Ethanol is a less dense energy source than gasoline. Typically mileage runs 12 to 30% lower than gasoline depending on the engine and the tune. I dont know of anyone on the board here thathas given e85 a real test. Please continue to post your mileage results, and the % change if you would. We are all interested (at least I am).

A higher octave tune might allow you to use the fuel to its full potential. The trick is to figure out your mileage loss and compare it to the difference in price. By the way, the manual recommends a gradual transition over 2 tanks rather than the run it dry method.

Please let us know how it goes. I would love to experiment myself but there are no commercial e85 stations in my town.

KRAZYK 01-12-2011 01:28 PM

well just an update..

Ive got about 40 miles left in my first tank of E85. I have not noticed any power loss or decrease in throttle response, but I have noticed a pretty good drop in MPGs. I was getting abour 14-16 city on Gasoline but on E85 im getting just under 13 it looks like. I'll do a final calculation very soon when I fill up my tank again today or tomorrow.

It should be noted that I have been doing more city driving on this tank then Ive done in the past with gasoline.. my errands just worked out that way.

I emailed someone at Diablo Sport and asked them if they had an E85 preset. He said no but I could still increase the engine timing as much as I needed for the higher octane. He then told me that the programmer COULD help increase my MPGs on Ethanol BUT they would never be as high as Gasoline.

I still plan on getting a tuner anyway no matter if I use E85 or Gas.

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