This month, June 08, we went through Emissions testing in the Tucson test facility. We now know what our 50% plus Flex Fuel vehicle can do.....
You can do the same as well!
This car is an older station wagon, all wheel drive, and has 206,000 miles. We have put about 10,000 miles a year on this vehicle.
1992 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2.2 liter 4 cylinder multiport, non-turbo, AWD
5 speed Manual Transmission
I always changed the oil and Air filter before emissions testing each year. In 2008 I did not have time to do this so the Air filter has about 10,000 miles on it. Oil had about 3000 miles on it also. We use Delo 400 oil, which is a premium oil. In early 2007, a few months before 2007 testing, we changed the O2 sensor as it looked original and was possibly not working as well as when new.
2005 through 2007 results. (Before blending E-85)
HC in PPM 19 (Idle standard is 220)
CO in PPM 0.01 (Idle Standard 1.20)
This year, we have been using a blend that is 60/40,
3 parts E-85 to 2 parts 87 octane pump gas.
We started blending very slowly, as per David's suggestions, to avoid dissolving too much built up gunk and varnish in the fuel system and thereby plugging the fuel filter, adding one gallon of E-85 with each full tank of pump gas.
Increase another gallon of E-85 to each subsequent tankful until we were at the present 3/2 ratio.
We have been at a 3/2 ratio since last November 2007.
We note that we can drive one gear higher while commuting around town, quite often we are running in 5th gear at around 40 to 45 mph. The engine is loafing along turning at about 1500 to 1700 rpm.
Before, when running on pump gas, this car would have been pinging at 40 mph in 5th gear, which would have necessitated shifting down to 4th and spinning the engine faster, using more fuel.
Our MPG on the 3/2 ratio, has been averaging 22 mpg without changing our driving habits except as noted above. We were getting 22 mpg when on pump gas.
Disclaimer: Ask Your mechanic about blending fuel in Your auto.
Our mpg is improving even more as we learn to implement coasting to a stop while idling, and other fuel saving tricks.