Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

5 Essential Things to Know About Biofuel

biofuels

Whether you already know the environmental benefits of using biofuel or you are simply considering whether it is an option you want to pursue in your next vehicle, it is important to understand how it works. Biofuel, which is made from waste byproducts and agricultural products, is a renewable energy source that is cheaper and more eco-friendly than both gas and diesel fuels. As such, it is becoming a major consideration for those who want to lessen their impact on the earth and save at the gas pump. The following are some of the essential things you need to know about biofuel.

There Are Three Types

Biofuel is available as biomethane, which is obtained from organic materials as they decompose; ethanol, which is made up of starch, sugars and cellulose and is currently used in gasoline blends; and biodiesel, which is derived from cooking waste and seed oils. There are also biofuels made from algae, which requires less land and can be genetically modified to produce great amounts of oil or biofuels.

Fewer Emissions

The initial interest in biofuels was due to the stricter standards put in place for vehicle emissions. These fuels burn more cleanly, resulting in fewer emissions of particulate matter, greenhouse gases and sulfur from the tailpipe.

Energy Content

The energy content of biofuels is a major consideration when looking for a replacement for conventional fuels. Currently, biodiesel has an energy content of around 90 percent of what is provided by petroleum diesel. Ethanol provides around 50 percent of the energy of gasoline and butanol produces around 80 percent of the energy content of gasoline. This lower energy content translates to vehicles traveling fewer miles when using the same amount of each fuel.

Land Requirements an Issue

While there are obvious benefits to using biofuels, the manufacturing methods currently in place make them a less than feasible option for mass production. The sheer amount of land required for planting sources that could be used for creating the oil are enormous. For example, a popular material is jatropha. In order to meet the global fuel demands, an area the size of the US and Russia combined would need to be planted with this material.

Study Is Ongoing

While mass production of biofuels is currently not possible on a global scale, scientists are still working to discover methods that would minimize land requirements in order to better facilitate the use of biofuels in the automotive industry.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Flexible Clutch Hose
Common signs include difficulty shifting, low clutch fluid, and feeling no resistance at the clutch pedal.
Insurance Requirements for Car Registration in Kentucky
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet requires that all drivers in Kentucky carry liability automotive insurance, or “financial responsibility” in order to operate a vehicle legally and maintain vehicle...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...


Related questions

Q: How far can you drive on E?

Hello. To be honest, every vehicle is different. Even the same model and year of vehicles will have a different distance they can go. If the light comes on most vehicles will be able to safely travel about 20 miles...

Q: What does the Econ mode indicator mean?

The Econ mode indicator is located on the instrument panel. When the indicator is illuminated, it means that the vehicle is currently in Econ mode. When Econ mode is turned off, the light will go away. Tip The Econ mode...

Q: Smelling fuel inside car and smoke coming from the engine.

Hello. If you just had all of these services done, then you should take the vehicle back to that shop. It sounds like they may not have properly reconnected everything in the fuel system when they serviced the injectors. It...