Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

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Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby Dogstar - January 30th, 2013, 12:43 am

Please excuse my ignorance as I've tried searching for a better understanding before posting ... :hide:

What is your real-world experience &/or input regarding fuel grade use with the 2.0L EcoBoost-equipped Escape? The manual recommends 87 octane normally but "premium" unleaded for the EcoBoost's.

I'm confused since around here all fuel grades ("regular" = 87 octane; "mid-grade" = 89 octane; "premium" = 91 octane) now include up to 10% ethanol. Would the supposed performance/mileage gain be worth paying the surcharge for our "premium" (91 octane with 10% ethanol) grade fuel?

:?

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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby coloradoescape - January 31st, 2013, 1:29 am

Various mechanics I have talked to around here have stated that I should use whatever octane rating does not cause knocking. This means that at 6500 feet elevation I can use 85 octane.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby Krafty81 - January 31st, 2013, 2:02 am

Owners manual says use regular unless you are towing.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby dbsb3233 - January 31st, 2013, 8:00 pm

[quote="coloradoescape"]Various mechanics I have talked to around here have stated that I should use whatever octane rating does not cause knocking. This means that at 6500 feet elevation I can use 85 octane.[/quote]
Yep. 85 (regular) for us in Colorado (high altitude), 87 (regular) for most everyone else (low altitudes). Our two 2.0 ecoboost Titaniums seem to run just fine on regular, even in high altitude (I live at 9000'). The ethanol blend doesn't seem to bother them at all. They're extremely peppy and run like champs.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby Jay2TheRescue - January 31st, 2013, 10:07 pm

If ethanol free fuel is available you may notice an increase in mileage. On my Escape, ethanol free fuel is good for up to an additional 8 MPG.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby onthelam - January 31st, 2013, 10:51 pm

Jay2TheRescue wrote:If ethanol free fuel is available you may notice an increase in mileage. On my Escape, ethanol free fuel is good for up to an additional 8 MPG.

This is what I found when towing for several days thru the Appalachians (in cases where we could get premium without ethanol, fuel consumption was only 5-10% more than normal. On regular with ethanol, as much as 25% more than normal).
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby brave_fello - February 8th, 2013, 10:19 am

I tried searching for a 0% ethanol station and they are very few and far between. I am in the Boston area and there are no 0E in the entire state. We have the stupidest politicians in Taxachusetts. Effing corn lobby convincing our political leadership that Ethanol is a benefit for the American consumer.

It doesn't help the environment and forces you to fill up more regularly.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby Tomt - February 8th, 2013, 11:11 am

Premium provides VERY slightly more horsepower than regular. For the vast majority of people, you would never know the difference. Stick with regular and save some money. The engine will automatically adjust to either fuel so there is no need for concern in that regard.

Non-ethanol fuel is always better but increasingly hard to find... Since ethanol (alcohol) has less energy than gasoline, ethanol fuels give less performance and poorer mileage...

Dogstar wrote:What is your real-world experience &/or input regarding fuel grade use with the 2.0L EcoBoost-equipped Escape? The manual recommends 87 octane normally but "premium" unleaded for the EcoBoost's.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby FireEscape09 - February 8th, 2013, 12:50 pm

There is nothing premium about higher octane fuel. It's a marketing gimmick to make people think they're buying something better. Octane has a purpose. And you should only use the octane rating you manual states for your engine. If the manual says to use 87, then that is what you use. Using anything else will do nothing at best, and cause problems at worst. Octane is for resisting detonation and too high or too low will just make it not operate properly.

10% ethanol has nothing to do with octane, premium, ecoboost, or anything else. It is added to all the fuel grades as a replacement for MTBE. MTBE used to be the additive for helping the environment until they realized it made it worse. Now they use 10% ethanol to make it worse instead.
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Re: Fuel: 2.0L EcoBoost - octane vs. ethanol

Postby Domain - February 8th, 2013, 1:59 pm

Been questioning this myself. I have easy access to ethanol-free 91 octane, but it's also 91 octane. It's about a 3.80 vs. 4.20 difference. (Can't I just pay 20 cents more for 87 E0? Sigh.)

Is it worth 40 more cents a gallon? I'm doubting it, but you guys tell me.
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