Strong northerly winds gusted to well over 20 knots most of the day Wednesday and fishing was nonexistent. Hopefully that will change quickly, and by this weekend, conditions should return to normal with rising water levels.
With no fishing reports, this allows us to address an unpleasant topic to most boaters: ethanol gasoline.
Wednesday, BoatUS, a large organization devoted to boaters, issued a statement warning operators of marine engines that there likely will be a shortage of E0 (zero-ethanol) gasoline available at marinas and gas stations this summer.
In their news release they wrote:
“E0 gasoline, which is sold at marinas and gas stations, is in effect being pushed out of the boat fuel market to make room for the Renewable Fuel Standard-mandated E15 and higher ethanol blends. This means boaters may see shortages of E0 fuel as early as this summer’s boating season. BoatUS believes boaters need a reliable, trusted fuel such as E0 to ensure smooth engine operation and safe navigation”
Currently, the majority of marine engines along Texas Coastal Waters operate on E10 gasoline which contains approximately 10 percent ethanol. This has been the case for years, and boaters have learned to deal with it, knowing how to prevent ethanol-related fuel problems by use of additives and not allowing the fuel to sit up too long in gas tanks and engines.
There is one ethanol-based fuel that should be avoided all together, and that is the E85 blend containing 85 percent ethanol. This high-ethanol fuel is intended only for engines specially designed to accept high-ethanol content fuel blends, such as the flexible-fuel vehicles.
I am not aware of any marine engines that can use that blend without major damage occurring. Before adding gas to your boat’s tank, check the ethanol content. If the e-number is higher than 10, you should consult with your dealer or mechanic before refueling.
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