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Discussion Starter #1
Last 3 times I went to a gas station with these new "Up to 10% Ethanol" Stickers my CE Lights came on with an emissions code. It resets and goes away for a month until I come across another ethanol, but I'm running out of stations without the sticker. Any suggestions or additives that would make the engine happier?

99 Frontier 4cyl: Plugs and cables are less than a year old. I have 88K miles and she was running great. I've noticed with the ethanol gas where I used to get 270-300 miles out of a tank, now I only get 230 tops.

Very strange..

tx- felesae
 

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Last 3 times I went to a gas station with these new "Up to 10% Ethanol" Stickers my CE Lights came on with an emissions code. It resets and goes away for a month until I come across another ethanol, but I'm running out of stations without the sticker. Any suggestions or additives that would make the engine happier?

99 Frontier 4cyl: Plugs and cables are less than a year old. I have 88K miles and she was running great. I've noticed with the ethanol gas where I used to get 270-300 miles out of a tank, now I only get 230 tops.

Very strange..

tx- felesae
Not real strange, there is less energy in ethanol than gasoline although a 20% drop for a 10% ethanol fuel seems excessive. What is the check engine code that you are getting? Even with the light out the code is retained in memory for a number of cycles. If you do not have a code reader some of the auto stores will read the code for free. I cannot suggest much more until identify the check engine code.

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I loaned my reader to a friend but will get it back tonight. Thanks for answering. I'll see what it says this time. :)
 

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Does your owner's manual address the use of ethanol? They have been making vehicles that are 10% ethanol capable for quite a while now. Also, just because it says the gas can contain ethanol doesn't mean it does. Right now I think the oil companies are only required to sell less than 2% ethanol so so stations that have the stickers might not even have ethanol in the tanks if the company has met its quota.

It'll be interesting to hear if your truck is 10% ethanol capable and to hear what the code is.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Good point, I will dig up the manual and see what it says about ethanol.

Well the code reads P1148, emissions. A friend ran a separate O2 sensor check with the handheld computer and they checked out ok.

Off to get the manual. Thanks_ m
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yup original manual says oxygenates such as ethanol are not recommended but effects have not been fully researched. Then gives the recommendation that if you are goign to try it do go more than 10% and can still damage the fuel system. Joy..
 

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I think you're barking up the wrong tree here.

In Minnesota it's been the law for years that gas must be at least 10% ethanol. Performance, economy difference is not detectable. Certainly nothing to cause an engine light.
 

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I think you're barking up the wrong tree here.

In Minnesota it's been the law for years that gas must be at least 10% ethanol. Performance, economy difference is not detectable. Certainly nothing to cause an engine light.
Your performance and mileage won't be detectable, if you never ran the unadulterated fuel. Here in Florida we just recently got the Ethanol in our fuel. I used to get 115 miles on 5 1/2 gallons of reg unleaded, on the average. Now I get 95 miles on the same amount of fuel. Power, performance and mileage were all affected as was rpm. I scanned the ecm, looked for fuel leaks etc. Couldn't find the problem, until I went to get fuel. There it was, above the gas nozzle, like a skull and cross bones. A small little sticker that said "may contain up to 10% or less Ethanol". On the older vehicles, hard starting, stalling, hesitation, excessive vapor lock, rough idle are all symptoms of Ethanol. Having the engine tuned properly on older vehicles is a must. Being that Felesae has a 99, it could happen. The newer fuel systems can compensate with newer oxygenated fuel. Fuel consumption will still increase regardless. You have to remember, the EPA mandated oxygenated fuels in regional areas of the Country, due to pollution concerns. Not everybody had it. But I can tell you, there is a difference. Personally, the U.S. should have went with hydrogen, but I'm not a big oil man, or a Congressman who could make a difference. Just think back to the days of Methanol (MTBE) and gasohol. They created more problems then they solved. I hope Ethanol fuel won't be on the market too long, as I'd rather have my mileage and performance back.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well, I've taken good care of my girl, faithful oil changes, plugs, wires, filters. Except for the headliner (that was quoted by the salesman not to fall - ha ha) I've kept up on everything. Yes, hopefully this will pass.

Not to down the system but it seems everything in America is geared towards forcing people to upgrade and spend more money, from cars to TV.. No sense in making something to last. They complain we fill the landiflls yet they cannot make a washer and dryer last 10 years anymore.

I may check out my fuel filter next and see what that reveals.. you never know with computers. Thank you all - felesae
 

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. On the older vehicles, hard starting, stalling, hesitation, excessive vapor lock, rough idle are all symptoms of Ethanol. I hope Ethanol fuel won't be on the market too long, as I'd rather have my mileage and performance back.
There's really nothing in your post I could agree with.:)

Are you calling this '99 Nissan "older"? I've ran everything from an older Chevy 350, an '86 CRX, to an '89 GM 2.5 four with none of the "symptoms" you describe.

Perhaps you are referring to the 85% ethanol blend (E85) that is also sold here? That should be ran in designated vehicles only like my '99 Ford in which I have experienced no drivability problems. I have seen a reduction in mileage of 20% however.
 

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P1148 is actually closed loop control. It's more than an O2 sensor. It's telling you the the engine cannot adjust its parameters correctly. The most direct approach to the problem is to find a shop that has an OBDII capability that is equivalent to Nissan's CONSULT system. This capability can look at the engine "trims". Typical inexpensive code readers (under $150.00) cannot read the trims. Doing so will help identify the sensor or system that is causing the problem.

If you are going to shotgun the problem in the blind I would first clean the MAF (mass air flow sensor). You can spray the MAF with a non-lubricating electronics cleaner (leaves no residue) and VERY gently wipe the sensor with a cotton swab. The MAF is very delicate so be careful (and it is also rather expensive).

Steve
 

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There's really nothing in your post I could agree with.:)

Are you calling this '99 Nissan "older"? I've ran everything from an older Chevy 350, an '86 CRX, to an '89 GM 2.5 four with none of the "symptoms" you describe.

Perhaps you are referring to the 85% ethanol blend (E85) that is also sold here? That should be ran in designated vehicles only like my '99 Ford in which I have experienced no drivability problems. I have seen a reduction in mileage of 20% however.
What's to not understand? A 99 OBDII system is no match for today's CAN Communications. It doesn't matter whether the car is in Minnesota or not. Again YOU fail to understand that because many these "symptoms", are not happening in Minnesota or to you, that they must not be happening to anyone else or anywhere else. You failed to understand as I had mentioned in my previous post, that we in FLORIDA had just RECENTLY been MANDATED to run 10% or less ETHANOL in our FUEL. This stuff is new to us. In my shop we are seeing more of these "symptoms" due to Ethanol and poor vehicle maintenance. Again, as I had previously stated, the older vehicles need to be properly maintained. Okay, this is in F L O R I D U H, not M I N N E S O D U H ! There are very few gas stations HERE, selling E85. If someone pumps E85 in a non flex fuel vehicle,then let the fool suffer the consequences.
 

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Yup original manual says oxygenates such as ethanol are not recommended but effects have not been fully researched. Then gives the recommendation that if you are goign to try it do go more than 10% and can still damage the fuel system. Joy..
If your manual addresses 10%, I would think you'd be OK. Almost everything I've read says if you go beyond 10% and you're not a FFV you'll throw codes and start damaging things.

I was around for the 70's go around of Ethanol and I didn't have any problems with it then in my '68 6-cyl, leaded fuel, Mustang. That is, if I ever used it. Keep in mind, just because the sticker is there doesn't mean you're getting any Ethanol. The sticker says "up to 10%". If the oil company has reached its quota (at that station or others), it doesn't need to, and probably won't be, adding Ethanol. Anyway, I think the "it'll melt your engine" rumors back then were probably a scare tactic by the oil companies. I don't know if Ethanol will ever amount to anything, especially if we keep working with corn, but if we can ever make it out of switch grass or algea, who knows.

Finally, just for the heck of it, I Googled "P1148 Closed Loop, Bank 1" and there was at least one site that was saying you might see this at fill up if your cap is: off too long, not put on tight, or has some other issue. I don't know if that's true, but it may be something to check. Does the light stay on for that entire tank of gas, or just for a while after the fill-up?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well sprayed out the Mass Air Flow Sensor and installed a new fuel filter. Reset the code but she still seems to be running a little rough. I will try to follow the diagnostic outlined in the Haynes manual this weekend for the MAF voltage drops and see where to go from there.
 
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