SmartGasArticles

Subject: Acetone in Fuels (A Study of Dimethylketone or Propanone)
Author: Louis LaPointe
Date: February 11, 2005

(c) Copyright 1990-2005 Louis LaPointe All rights reserved

Significantly Improved Mileage:

This article about acetone (CH3COCH3) probably draws conclusions that  Big Oil  and the  American Car Manufacturers  and others do NOT want you to know. They suffer from unlimited corporate GREED. They want bad mileage. The worse, the better as far as they are concerned. Acetone is a vaporization additive rather than a fuel additive per se. It is successful in very tiny amounts from about one part per 6000 to one part per 2000. However above one part per 1000, the mileage seems to taper off while HC emissions actually are greatly reduced. The peak gain in mileage comes with between .075 of one-percent and .20 of one-percent acetone, depending on the actual vehicle which may be running gasoline or diesel. Acetone operates on the unburned portion of the fuel to gain added vaporization and improve combustion efficiency. There are no bad effects and every good reason to use acetone in your fuel.

So try a little acetone. Acetone is the secret additive for mileage. Containers labeled acetone from a hardware store are usually okay and pure enough to put in your fuel. We prefer cans or bottles that say 100-percent pure. The acetone in gallons or pints we get from Fleet Farm are labeled 100% pure. The bottles from Walgreen say 100% pure. Never use solvents such as paint thinners or unknown stuff in your gas. Toluene, benzene and xylene are okay if they are pure but may not raise mileage except when mixed with acetone. The author has used ACETONE in gasoline and diesel fuel and in jet fuel (JP-4) for 50 years. He has tested fuels independently and is an authority on this important subject. For instance a tiny bit of acetone in diesel fuel can stop the black smoke when the rack is all the way at full throttle. We recently proved that Carb Medic from Gunk can raise mileage when 5 oz. are used with 2 oz. of acetone per 10 gallons of gasoline, even in cold weather. Normally arctic air prevents accurate mileage testing in the winter. And never allow skin contact with these additives. Nor should you breathe this stuff. Read the directions on the can.

Questions asked of someone in the petroleum industry regarding ACETONE will automatically trigger a string of negative reactions and perhaps false assertions. We may have heard them all. The mere mention of this additive represents such a threat to oil profits that you may get fabricated denials against the successful use of acetone in fuels. For this reason, test the stuff for yourself. The author has never found any valid reason for not using acetone in gasoline or diesel fuel. Plus it takes such a tiny amount to work. No wonder they fear this additive. Of course you might Email this article to your congressman because clearly ACETONE should be ordered by Federal Law to be present in all fuels.

There is a great little device available to check your exact gas mileage and more. See  ScanGauge.com  for a very timely instrument that fits any car 1996 or newer. See your real-time MPG, inlet temperature and many more details as you drive. This inexpensive tool should end a lot of debate over what works for mileage and what does not.

There are of course other additives that improve mileage but these have been black-balled by the petroleum industry. The industry could easily add these ingredients into gasoline and diesel fuel. But will they dare to improve your mileage? NO. You just have to stumble onto the fuel mileage secrets all by yourself, like we have. Certain octane improvers for example also aid mileage. But unfortunately many products claiming to improve mileage are expensive and do not really help much. Others are fakes. For instance, a smooth flow of air into a carburetor or injector is far better for mileage than turbulent air. Yet many people deliberately introduce turbulent air into their engines. There are many silly myths floating around the car industry to fool the average person. Another is that cold intake air improves mileage. NO. Warm air improves mileage.

Test for yourself. Take a mileage check for each and every tank of gas or diesel fuel like we do. Your actual mileage is NOT that of a single tankful but the average of perhaps five tanks worth. To be accurate, you should not miss any checks. This takes discipline to get reliable results. Someday your car will do it for you with an MPG gauge on the dash. But for now, YOU ought to keep tabs on your mileage for all our sakes. The ideal auto would save the MPG of your last tank of gas on your instruments. Be consistent where you buy your gasoline because different gasolines vary tremendously. The best gas and the worst gas in your neighborhood will likely have a 30-percent spread in mileage, according to the author's experience. Same for diesel fuel. Try to keep down the number of variables wherever you gas up by using the same station, same pump, same grade or same octane before testing. In almost all cases, the lowest octane is best for mileage. Most modern vehicles do not have high enough compression to justify using high octane fuels. The testing indicates best mileage is obtained with 85 or 87 octane gasoline. Too much octane causes a loss of power and economy. BUT too little octane causes the same things plus knocking. Listen carefully to your engine for tell-tale knocks or clicks when you start out from a light. Best mileage points to the correct octane when the engine is properly tuned. Pure acetone was rated in 1920 by Sir Harry Ricardo at 150 octane. Plus acetone turned out to be an excellent additive to reduce exhaust emissions in both gas and diesel engines.

The question we most hear is, "Will it harm my engine?" We feel like saying, "YES, it will blow it up." But instead we patiently explain how over five decades, we have never seen a problem with acetone. Would anyone use something more than once if it were harmful? Not me. Think about that. Only an oil company stooge would say anything negative about this nice additive.

Pure acetone or propanone is an extremely clean burning fuel that burns in air with a pretty blue smokeless flame. Acetone is a highly flammable liquid. It also removes paint. Do not get it on your paint and do not take it near a flame or spark. Acetone can reduce hydrocarbon emissions up to 60-percent. In some older cars, the HC readings with acetone went from say 440 PPM to 195, as just one example. Acetone is toxic to breathe and should be stored outside, not inside your house. Gasoline by itself is also highly toxic, so treat them both with respect and great care. Just a precaution. The author has soaked carburetor parts in acetone for months and even years to see if there is any deterioration. None. Gasoline and/or acetone will dissolve paint and cheap plastics. Any parts made to run with gasoline will work with acetone just fine. Besides we are using tiny amounts per gallon. Just a few ounces per ten gallons of gas. Alcohol has been shown to be corrosive in an engine yet they put THAT garbage into gasoline. Alcohol in general is anti-mileage but the oil company stooges claim it is wonderful. Most of the alcohol that enters your gas came here from Europe as stale wine. The myth of renewable energy has been milked by the Big Guys as much as possible. They know that alcohol is no good in fuels. Look at what happened in Brazil. Millions of engines and fuel systems were ruined in that country by alcohol. But do the Big Guys want your engines to last? No, of course not. They want you to buy new vehicles.

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Shown is the percentage MILEAGE GAIN when a tiny amount of acetone is added to fuel. The curves  A  B  C  show the effect on three different cars using different gasolines. Some engines respond better than others to acetone. It is important to use the same gasoline from the same gas station when testing mileage otherwise you have too many variables and get undependable results. The   D  curve is for diesel fuel. Too much acetone will decrease mileage slightly due to adding too much octane to the fuel. Too much also upsets the mixture ratio because acetone (like alcohol) is a light molecule. Acetone helps the fuel become a vapor more easily inside the chamber and mimimizes wasted fuel.

After you find the right amount for your car per ten gallons, and you are happy with your newfound mileage, you may one day cease using acetone for a couple of tanks. Watch the drop in mileage. It will amaze you. That reverse technique is one of the biggest eye openers concerning the use of acetone in fuel.

Complete vaporization of normal fuel is far from perfect in today's cars. A certain amount of fuel in most engines remains liquid in the hot chamber and slides past the rings into the oil. Of course the liquid fuel then ruins the rings and walls as it enters the crankcase to further damage the lubricating ability of the oil. In order to become a true gas and be fully combusted, fuel must undergo a phase change. Still, fuel needs a kick of some kind to transform from big globs into a full vapor. The acetone provides that kick with its rapid inherent molecular vibration that prevents fuel from escaping the combustion process and going through unburned. In the chart above, we see how little acetone in ten gallons it takes to help combust nearly all your fuel. Vacuum is the best friend your engine has to get your fuel fully vaporized. At part throttle the manifold vacuum reaches 20 to 25 inches of mercury. This important vacuum aids in breaking up the larger fuel particles and overcoming some of the disadvantages of surface tension. Remember a slight amount of heat amplifies the surface tension of the fuel molecules because the heat is spread across the outside of the large clumps of fuel. This draws the clumps tighter together. Just look how drops form. But a large amount of heat will reach the inside molecules within the clumps. The insides of the clumps must be broken up for complete combustion.

Most fuel molecules are sluggish with respect to their natural frequency. For instance the energy barrier from surface tension can sometimes force water to reach 300 degrees before it vaporizes. Similarly with gasoline. So any amount of water in the fuel is a killer to proper combustion. Fuel is commonly forced to reach excessive temperatures to vaporize. Your jump in mileage with acetone comes from the (former excess) fuel that now gets burned and no longer winds up in the crankcase. You stop the waste. That excess fuel was formerly wasted past the rings or sent out the tailpipe but now (with acetone) it gets burned. Conventional fuels are not designed to fully vaporize or fully combust. This simple fact appears to be deliberate on the part of the oil companies although some companies such as Texaco, Chevron and Canadian Shell deliver excellent gasoline mileage (in the opinion of the author) and in view of repeated test results. On numerous trips across the country in a 1995 Neon, his son calculates the mileage and they get a consistent 49 MPG with Texaco or Chevron. Often they get 40 in town. With a special FOG Inducer  device, they reached 52. A new Bright Enterprises version exists that may raise the mileage over 60 MPG in 2005. In fact we are testing numerous versions to gain big mileage.

Many years ago the author used a 1949 Olds to test fuels and immediately found that 100-percent acetone had way too much octane. About 150. So he eventually wound up with a fuel mixture around half acetone and half kerosene at the end of that experiment. By no means is this any recommendation. Nor did he simply start mixing chemicals without careful research and calculations. He knew enough about organic chemistry to investigate fuels on paper prior to pouring anything into a test tube or fuel tank. It was important to have some reasonable prediction of the final results. Furthermore the author modified his own carburetors, made carbs from scratch and tailored MANY different fuel mixtures for test purposes. A natural-born experimenter, he has been doing it ever since.

During extensive fuel testing on an engine dyno in Wilmington, we evaluated the effects of three additives on performance and economy. The three additives sprayed into the intake were water, alcohol and acetone. The spray entered just below the carburetor. Performance and economy improved with each reduction of the alcohol and/or water content of the spray mixture. But each and every increase in the acetone content improved performance and economy and reduced emissions. This correlation was true up to a point because only a tiny amount of acetone (fraction of one-percent) proved helpful. In other tests, acetone in gasoline cut emissions by an honest 50-percent or more. These tests were tedious but uncomplicated and verifiable.

It is a similar story when testing diesel fuels and acetone. A tiny bit of acetone in the fuel proved beneficial. The idle RPM goes up slightly by about 150 and the truck gains power and torque. It also runs more smoothly with much better economy. The difference is obvious.

Alcohol was introduced into our commercial fuels in recent years. But alcohol related problems have systematically been kept from the public. A very real cover-up has occurred for political reasons. Mileage drops as high as 50-percent are real (in my own testing) for instance. It make me angry. The biggest problem with alcohol in fuel is due to surface tension. Surface tension (ST) is seen when you place a drop of fuel, alcohol or water on a hot plate. It collects into balls and dances around without vaporizing. Ordinary fuel does not vaporize readily because of ST. Instead fuel balls up and dances around on the hot plate. Surface tension is like glue between fragments inside the fuel. So within an engine, fuel (gasoline or diesel fuel) resists being finely atomized due to ST. Complete atomization is essential to good combustion but you are DENIED that with alcohol. Gasoline needs injectors to produce a very fine spray into the air stream. Unfortunately the sprayed fuel tends to recombine into larger, persistent droplets because of surface tension. New injectors usually improve combustion because of making a finer spray pattern. With alcohol, gasoline and diesel fuel droplets may fall out of the airstream onto the walls of the manifold. Even in the most modern combustion chambers, some alcohol in (mixed) fuels may not start to burn until the chamber temperature reaches many hundreds of degrees. Good efficiency and ST are diametrically opposed. Thus particle size remains high when ST is prevalent. The real object should always be to REDUCE particle size.

The best way to fight many problems with fuels (such as ST) is to add just tiny amounts of acetone to better operate your gas engines and/or diesel engines. Acetone works wonders for engine Thermal Efficiency. The author has used this additive since 1956 with great success. The pure acetone label is the only additive suggested and is easily available from most stores in 16-ounce plastic bottles and in one-gallon containers from some large farm supply stores. But any acetone source is better than none. In a 10-gallon tank of gasoline, the author has generally used one to four ounces of pure acetone to obtain excellent mileage improvements. In a 20-gallon tank, the author has used about four to eight ounces of acetone with the gasoline. In a ten-gallon tank of diesel fuel, the author has used from 1 to 2 ounces of acetone and noticed that exhaust soot was greatly reduced as fuel mileage rose significantly. Performance went up too. A teaspoon of acetone in the fuel tank of a lawnmower or snowblower is what the author normally uses.

The author suggests not to continuously add acetone to each and every tank of fuel, rather only to every other tankful. The slightest amount of acetone seems to be highly effective for mileage and significant emissions reduction. Most diesel fuel is oily and a tiny amount of acetone has zero effect on injectors--in case that is a worry. Any such problems would have shown up after nearly five decades. In the past we have added the Torco two-cycle G7 smokeless synthetic gasoline additive to diesel fuel to make the fuel even more slippery.

If you own a construction or trucking company with heavy equipment and lots of gasoline and diesel engines, how would you like to save roughly 30-percent on your fuel costs? How would you like your engines to last twice as long? How would you like to get 15-percent more power from your engines? We have nearly a half century of experimentation with fuels and oils that you might find useful. Our approach is simply to eliminate the waste that you normally blow out the exhaust. That's it. Just stop the waste.

Ordinary gas or diesel fuel allows a portion of the unburned fuel to bypass the combustion process to escape in various forms of partial combustion products and go out the blackened tailpipe. Some unburned fuel enters the engine oil past the piston rings. The incomplete combustion creates smog, pollution and poor economy from wasted fuel. The surface tension of water is about three times  that of alcohol and most gasoline components. A few drops of moisture in the gas causes the ST of the fuel to zoom and not vaporize. Hence the partial products cause wasteful results. Unfortunately many gas stations have too high a tolerance for water in their tanks. It only takes a tiny amount of water to ruin even the best gasoline. We need tighter laws against water in stored fuel. Placing acetone in the gasoline or diesel fuel helps greatly to break up the water and alcohol the would otherwise cause any vehicle to run poorly and waste fuel. There is an increase in water in the exhaust of an engine running a tiny amount of acetone in the fuel due to improved combustion. The more gas you successfully burn, the more water you produce..

The acetone molecule works physically to vigorously shake up every drop of fuel. It acts like an internal vibrator to shake up each tiny bit of fuel so the fuel does NOT ball up or glue together into large aggregate particles. Instead this important additive guarantees more complete vaporization of fuel inside the combustion chamber where it really matters to defeat surface tension. Acetone allows gasoline to behave more like the ideal automotive fuel which is PROPANE. The degree of improved mileage depends on how much unburned fuel you are presently wasting. Thus you might gain 15 to 35-percent better economy from the use of acetone. Sometimes even more. Winter is very hard on mileage. Cold weather kills good mileage due to the reduction in Thermal Efficiency. For this reason, the author only conducts outside economy tests in the summer months.

Remember that acetone, alcohol, gasoline and all fuels in general are extremely flammable. Fuels in general should never be allowed near a flame of spark source. Fuels can also dissolve asphalt, most plastics and paint. They can damage skin and clothing. They should be kept in properly ventilated storage and not mixed with unknown substances. Keep children away from all dangerous chemicals. Do not bring dangerous fuels inside your home. A garage is typically a common place for such chemicals.

Why has the author revealed the benefits of acetone in cars and trucks? To keep our money in the U.S. even though the oil industry will do anything to prevent better mileage. They will do anything to prevent engines from lasting a long time. Why have they suppressed acetone and propane for many decades? We must assume it is ON PURPOSE. Simple GREED. Better mileage causes engines to last longer due to less unburned fuel going past the rings, thus keeping the rings and engine oil in far better condition. But the biggest reason to conceal this additive from you is that bad mileage gives the oil and car industries higher profits that comes right from your pockets, ruins the air and throws our children and our Nation into future debt. Do we want this insanity and uncontrolled greed to continue? Tell your Senator that we need acetone added to our gasoline.

Any person can easily verify that acetone improves fuel mileage. This is a no-brainer. Besides this is something YOU can do for your country. Send this page to your Senator. A simple way to determine the way acetone increases MPG is to document the number of days it takes going to work before you need to refill. With the right amount of acetone, you will go more days per tankful.

In conclusion, alcohol in fuel attracts water. This hurts mileage because water acts like a fire extinguisher. It's not a smart thing to put in cars or trucks. Some cars may run badly and even quit due to the incombustible nature of the water laden fuel. We know of a dozen cars that recently stopped running due to water in the alcohol and gas mixture. They used the same Blue Planet  gasoline. (One of those was my 1986 Jimmy). The gas tank was removed and drained. Look at the existing SUV situation with horrible mileage. In cold weather (below zero),  the water and alcohol form nasty (abrasive) icy particles that can damage fuel pumps. BUT acetone helps to fight the ice crystals. By adding acetone for better mileage, fewer total emissions per mile get blown into the atmosphere. Plus you can drive much farther. There is less pollution, period. How sad that in the 21st Century, a new 30,000 dollar vehicle gets an unholy 12 to 17 miles per gallon. Hey folks, my 1936 Dodge did better than that. What have the (mighty and powerful) car and oil industries been doing since 1936? Not to mention the ineffective job the DOE is doing--because it seems they are in bed together: DOE, car makers, Big Oil, API and some members of Congress. And why have conservationists such as the touted Sierra Club not recognized the value of acetone in the combustion process? Why have they not recognized that good mileage automatically means lower emissions? What gives?

If John Wayne were alive, he would probably tell you, "Hell yes, run acetone in your car. Who do those SOBs think they are?"

We would like to hear from car owners whose cars have quit after filling up with gas-alcohol fuel. The author knows it is a trivial thing to obtain great mileage. He has done it over and over for nearly 50 years by many different methods. The essential question is, "Why won't THEY?"

I hereby swear all stated above is true and factual.

 

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