I was reading in the March /April Gamalunga an article by Jonathon Nicholas regarding the secret tank destroyer - Ethanol. As Jonathon points out Ethanol is really quite bad to plastic tanks, rubber seals and internal parts in older fuel pumps, carbs etc so for those with older bikes, plastic tanks and or Carbed fueled motors Non ethanol fuel is what you really need.Â
For information at the pumps alongside the fuel octane designation ie 95, 97 Â or 98 you should see numbers and letter E0, E5 or E10 this shows the fuels Ethanol content. 0, 5% or 10%.
It may be of interest that not all fuels contain Ethanol - Most super unleaded fuels are Ethanol free, Ethenol affects fuel quality and makes it harder for the fuel to meet octane and quality levels.
Your cheap Supermarket fuel is just that - poor with few additives and often a high level of ethanol. Branded fuels are different as are super unleaded - even though many like to think they are just expensive - well so is a new tank, or a rebuild of you complete fuel system.Â
Some ethanol additives are available on the market but i can find no evidence these protect plastic or rubber parts. They do however protect most aluminium and other metals components Â used in older bikes fuel systems.
I am sure Â that as we move into the future that Ethanol will be added to all fuels at some time - but maybe that also depends on cost / demand etc to justify the use of Ethanol in to super unleaded.
This information was up to date in February 2015.Â
BP Fuel - Â Ethanol is added at 5% to unleaded petrol at all sites across the UK.
BP Ultimate (super unleaded petrol) does not have Ethanol added, except in the South West of England.Â
Esso - Â Ethanol is added at 5% to unleaded petrol at most sites in the UK.
Esso Super Unleaded petrol does not contain Ethanol, except in the South West of England (Devon & Cornwall)
Shell Â Shell gives no information to the question. It is therefore an assumption only, that all Shell petrol should be considered to contain 5% Ethanol. Â
Texaco Â Â Ethanol is added at 5% to unleaded petrol.
Texaco Super Unleaded petrol does not contain Ethanol.Â
Total - Â Ethanol is not added to any Total fuel (including standard unleaded petrol). Except in the North West and South East of England.Â
Hope this helps a few people with worries about fuel and its affects on our older bikes.Â