E10 biofuel: Department for Transport explains why it’s ‘better'
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E10 fuel becomes the UK’s default fuel today, September 1. But what does that mean for you? And how can you prepare for the change? Don’t get caught out by the new petrol coming to the forecourt of Petrol stations in England, Scotland and Wales.
When does E10 petrol come in?
E10 petrol becomes the default fuel in England, Scotland and Wales on September 1, 2021.
E10 will also be rolled out across Northern Ireland in February 2022.
The decision to switch from E5 fuel to E10 was announced by the Department For Transport in February 2021.
E10 petrol is already used around the world, including across Europe, the US and Australia.
Since 2016, E10 has been the reference fuel new cars are tested against for emissions and performance.
Will E10 fuel work in my car?
There are 32.6 million cars registered in the UK – and the vast majority, 95 percent according to the Department for Transport, will be compatible with the new biofuel.
However, estimates say as many as 600,000 cars currently on UK roads are not compatible with E10, including classic cars and some models from the early 2000s.
Since 2011, all new cars sold in the UK have had to be compatible with E10.
The manufacturers of many vehicles from the 1990s onwards have confirmed E10 can be used in their engines.
The following vehicles, however, may not be able to use E10 petrol:
- Classic vehicles
- Some specific models from the early 2000s
- Some mopeds, particularly with an engine size of 50cc or under
How can I check whether E10 will work in my vehicle?
The Government have created an online car checker, where you can check whether E10 is recommended for use in your vehicle
If you are still unsure after using the checker, it’s best to check with the manufacturer.
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Is E10 more expensive?
E10 will not cost any more than the outgoing default fuel, E5, available at the pump.
However, for those that can’t use E10 fuel, they’ll have to find super unleaded E5.
According to the Department for Transport, E10 can reduce your fuel economy (the number of miles per gallon of fuel) by around one percent.
What is E10 fuel?
E10 petrol contains 10 percent ethanol-based fuel, made by plants and their by-products. The other 90 percent is regular unleaded petrol.
The UK’s standard petrol was previously E5: a five percent ethanol petrol.
The Department for Transport’s explainer on E10 states, “By blending petrol with up to 10 percent renewable ethanol, less fossil fuel is needed, helping us reduce carbon emissions and meet climate change targets.”
The DfT says switching to E10 could reduce carbon emissions by 750,000 tonnes a year.
That’s the equivalent of taking 350,000 cars off the road or all the cars in North Yorkshire.
The switch is part of the UK Government’s plan to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
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