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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5108856 05/18/19 08:22 PM
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meadows Offline
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Kinder Morgan sent out a questionnaire requesting input, and the consensus was 91 octane. Essentially all of the gasoline could be transported thru their pipeline.

Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5108858 05/18/19 08:25 PM
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meadows Offline
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And, yes, higher octane usually requires more crude.

Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5109300 05/19/19 11:39 AM
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Solved the problem. My 2017 Equinox with its 11.2:1 compression ratio L4 gets E85. 100 octane and half the price of premium.


Freedom is not about having the choice to do what you want, but the choice to do what you ought.
Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: das_peikko] #5109319 05/19/19 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by das_peikko
Originally Posted by slacktide_bitog
The only non-high-altitude state I know of that doesn't have 93 available is California, and that is due to their strict environmental standards in regards to emissions. The cheapest ways to make California-compliant 93-octane are under patents held by a company that went out of business.

Does that mean that 93 octane doesn't burn clean enough for California? I wonder how octane is related to emissions.

It's not directly related. But there are multiple ways to create a higher apparent octane rating and some of them are unacceptable to California, if what people are saying is correct.


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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: Nickdfresh] #5109707 05/19/19 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Nickdfresh
^^+1 Yeah, it's more about elevation than any EPA policies:

That's what I thought. Of course, we're not the States, but some provinces have much better availability of 93 octane than others. This province only has one brand that sells it, and the rest sell 91. Of course, it's still available and legal; it's just rare.


Plain, simple Garak.

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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5109738 05/19/19 11:06 PM
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Seen 93 E10 cry around Leavenworth at Murphys.Seen a lot of 91 E0 banana in Metro KC and sometimes 104 E0 too. California would have trouble with anything higher than 91 possibly because its already expensive and a lot of drivers either dont need it or wont buy it. If it sits too long that can be a problem too. With all the fuels delivered out there they can keep the pollution down if every station gets exactly the same. Where it hurts them is someone way smarter than them is looking/finding ways to get higher than 91 and by doing so could be a non taxed or black market enterprise.


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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5110400 05/20/19 03:55 PM
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dailydriver Offline OP
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I was asking because whenever I go to Maine (and even parts of/most of N.H.), there is ONLY 91 premium available anywhere, but in Pa. and Joyzee we ONLY have 93 premium on offer. shrug

Granted those New England states have a higher overall elevation than the local regions do, but I would NOT label them as 'high altitude' by any means of measure. no-no


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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5112927 05/22/19 09:17 PM
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Well in Vermont a number of roads go up and over 2 thousand feet of elevation in the passes in the Green mts.... In NH it can be that way too.

Here in Western Va we have a plateau with a base elevation of 2500 ft... Southwest of Roanoke this escarpment raises up from 800 to 1000 feet to a much higher elevation. This is where Mt Rogers 5,729 ft and Whitetop 5,520 ft my are located. There's also Burke's Garden which is called the thumb print of the Appalachian Mts... In that area it has a base elevation of 3,000 ft. Surrounded by mountains on all sides. Beautiful farm country in that flat highland plateau. I have to get out that way Southwest again to see if there are gas stations that only sell 91 octane.


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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: meadows] #5116550 05/26/19 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by meadows
Kinder Morgan changed the spec on the main California pipeline to 91 octane.


??? What are you talking about?


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Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5116626 05/26/19 06:04 PM
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You guys are all off. There is no particular restriction on fuel octane.

I remember an article in AutoWeek about this time it happened. It was really about the demand for premium unleaded and that the most common definition of "premium" was for 91 (R+M)/2 octane. Before then 92 was the most common. The old Unocal did have a patent on making higher octane rated fuel. I specifically remember old 76 stations selling a However, Unocal sold off all of its refining operations to Tosco, and that eventually went to Conoco before the ConocoPhillips merger and now Phillips 66. Not sure where the patent was assigned. When Chevron bought out Unocal, they were basically only a natural gas exploration company. And Sinopec tried to buy them first before US regulators tried to stop the sale on the premise that a Chinese company would divert an American division's fuel to China or perhaps use it against American interests.

By now that patent should have expired. One can find fuel that's blended with CARB-compliant 100 octane race fuel. That's basically all that one can find in California to make anything higher than 91 octane these days. But limiting conventional premium to 91 does make things easier for the refiners.

Found the article in AutoWeek. I don't remember they had it before but I had a print subscription back then. Apparently they're archiving a lot of their older print-only articles. The part on MTBE being pretty much gone wouldn't apply today since ethanol is almost universally added as an octane booster.

https://autoweek.com/article/car-news/no-more-92-premium-octane-rating-drops-california

This is another take:

Quote
http://www.superstreetonline.com/features/news/0102scc-technobabble
Whose fault is it this time, CARB? The EPA? The CHP? None of the above. This time we're being victimized partly by the oil companies, and partly--this is the one that hurts--by ourselves.

You see, when crude oil is refined into gasoline, the refinery doesn't have all that much control over what comes out. Crude oil is full of all kinds of stuff, and a refinery simply separates it, sorting all the iso-this and hepta-that in order of density. The really heavy stuff, like tar, is near the bottom, while the really light stuff, like butane, is near the top.

Somewhere in the upper ranges of the stack are the components of gasoline. There are between 10 and 15 different blend stocks, each with a different octane rating, which are mixed together to make gasoline.

The crude oil being used and little else determine the amount of each blend stock available for mixing. Generally, if you just dump all the blend stocks into a bucket, you end up with something around 88 or 89 octane. If you're selective and only mix the good stuff, you can make 92, 93 or even 95 octane. But once you take out the good stuff, you're left with crap--something like 85 octane. Then you have to leave enough good stuff in the bucket to bring this pee-water up to at least 87 octane. This limits the amount of 95-octane gas you can make. If you make 93-octane premium instead, you use up less of the high-octane stocks, allowing you to make a higher proportion of premium fuel.

In the Midwest, where an extensive customer base of good old boys in pickup trucks consume vast quantities of 87 octane, demand for premium fuel is low enough to make genuine high-octane premium.

In California, however, Lexus-driving executives suck down premium fuel like it's Evian, so 92 was the rule.

CARB isn't entirely innocent. Many of its standards for evaporative emissions and misdirected attempts at oxygenation have raised the manufacturing cost of high-octane gas, but it doesn't seem to be behind the sudden change to 91. Instead, according my super-secret oil industry mole, it all comes back to money. Unocal, you see, has a patent on the 173 easiest ways to make California-friendly 92-octane gas. As a result, every other oil company has to pay Unocal 5.75 cents for every gallon they make using one of these techniques. They haven't actually been paying it, but that's an issue for the lawyers to sort out.

Re: rationale for some states limiting the octane of premium fuel? [Re: dailydriver] #5119307 05/29/19 12:52 PM
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In WI, 91 octane is ethanol free. 93 octane is e-10. So its 91 with 10% E added, and that equates to 93 octane.

I would say its near 50-50 on stations with 91 or 93. Most 91 stations call it recreational fuel.

Last edited by Srt20; 05/29/19 12:54 PM.
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