Updated: Aug 30
You may have noticed at fuel stations across the UK, or in news articles, that the standard of fuel will soon be changing.
From September 2021, the new standard for Petrol will become E10. You will still see E5 fuel being made widely available, most likely displayed as a “Super Grade.”
Here’s a list of questions we’ve made that will hopefully give you peace of mind.
What is E10?
E10 is a category of fuel that refers to the amount of ethanol the fuel may contain up to. E5 is the other category, which contains up to 5% ethanol.
Will this affect my vehicle?
If your petrol vehicle is less than 10 years old, almost certainly not. Petrol powered vehicles older than this may also be suitable for E10 fuel. We would recommend checking your vehicle hand book first. If you’re having difficulty finding answers, you may wish to try the UK governments vehicle checker here, or you can ask one of our members of staff.
I have a classic petrol powered car, what should I do?
In most cases, classic cars can continue to be run on the E5 grade fuel. If you’re unsure, please contact the garage to discuss further.
Can I mix E5 and E10 fuels?
Yes. Even if you run an older car on E10 fuel by accident, you will likely not see any difference. Repeated use of the wrong type of fuel for the vehicle may cause accelerated wearing of parts however. You can use E5 fuel on newer vehicles too, should you wish.
Why might some vehicles not be compatible with E10?
The problem with E10 fuel for incompatible vehicles, is the amount of ethanol present. Ethanol can cause corrosion on certain metals and plastics. It is also hydroscopic, meaning it absorbs water. This has a few implications on your vehicle:
1: Increased wear of engine components, for example fuel lines and seals.
2: Fuel used for vehicles left stationary for months at a time, may become unusable due to increased water content.
Of course, if your vehicle is compatible, then this won’t be a problem. To be clear, this shouldn’t affect occasional misuse of the correct fuel either.
What about other petrol powered machinery?
Generally speaking, most modern petrol powered machines will be suited to run on E10 fuel. Always check the manuals for accurate guides on what to do, however as a quick check, if your carb and fuel tank appear to be made of plastic, it’s likely they are able to run the new E10 fuel.
Why is E10 happening?
Put simply, it will reduce the amount of CO2 produced by petrol powered cars and in doing so, help tackle climate change.