KAIT8 News: Ethanol causing hidden damage to small engines

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July 26, 2013

Jessi Turnure, july 25 - PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - Ethanol powers your lawnmowers, weed eaters, ATVs, and more.

But that fuel can also permanently damage those small engines without the proper treatment.

Ethanol burns up the inside of the engines, making them almost impossible to repair.

Marty Callantine, shop foreman at Ellington's Small Engine Repair, said he sees this problem every day with small engines.

"They've got it regulated where the engines are running leaner for less emissions and then the ethanol makes it run even leaner. It just has too much alcohol build up in the fuel."

Callantine said the engine has no way of cooling down. "That can completely destroy a small engine. A chainsaw, weed eater. It'll burn up almost instantly."

He said the issue is even more hidden because you do not always know how much ethanol is in your gasoline. "It could be ten percent, it could be 40 percent. And there's no way of knowing for the consumer. it is a big problem."

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