Boat Performance Hurt By Ethanol? Comment by July 27

July 15, 2015

When it comes down to all the details, you might not believe how your boat performance is affected by the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) -- but then again, maybe you all would believe it! Whether you are boating because it is essential to tournament life, boating to get to your favorite fishing hole, or recreationally boating to make some wake, now is your time to give your feedback about fuel mixtures.

Boat performance can suffer greatly when too much ethanol is involved. Our good friends at Boat Owners of The United States (BoatUS) have alerted us to an opportunity to register our comments and, hopefully, make an impact:

THE ISSUE: The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is the 2005 federal law that requires the blending of biofuels such as corn-ethanol into our gasoline. When it was written, it assumed that America’s use of gasoline would continue to rise and mandated escalating amounts of biofuels to be blended with our fuel. Since 2005, however, gasoline usage has actually declined steadily, which today forces more ethanol into less gasoline.

To keep up with this RFS mandate, in 2010 the EPA permitted E15 (fuel containing up to 15% ethanol) into the marketplace. Even though E15 is prohibited from being used in marine engines, snowmobiles, motorcycles, small engines like lawnmowers and leaf blowers, as well as any vehicle made before 2001, this fuel can now be found in 24 states at the very same pumps as E10 (10% ethanol).

There are millions of boaters across the country getting their recreational fill by filling their boats at roadside gas stations. Higher blend ethanol fuels are often the least expensive, so you may be filling up and not finding the trade-off to be obvious, but your boat performance will eventually suffer.

Typically, the only warning you have is a sticker mixed in with all the other noise of warnings and labels at the pump. The potential for misfueling is huge, and boaters are at risk of using fuel that will actually damage an engine.

In the interest of better boat performance and preventing your boat engine from getting damaged, BoatUS is recommending action now.

ACTION NEEDED NOW: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is asking for comments on a proposal to increase the amount of ethanol that must be blended into the nation’s fuel supply for 2015 and 2016. If adopted, these proposed levels will require the use of a record amount of ethanol, forcing higher-level fuel blends (including E15) into more gas stations.

Has E15 Hurt Your Engine or Boat Performance?

If you've ever wanted to give the EPA a piece of your mind, now is the time. The comment deadline is July 27, 2015, so we hope you'll demand that the agency lower the ethanol mandate to ensure an adequate supply of safe fuel. Your boat performance and the life of your engine depend on it!