California Reformulated Gasoline Program
Final Meeting Summary
February 14, 1996
The performance subcommittee discussed the following key issues
regarding the California Reformulated Gasoline (CaRFG) performance and
compatibility testing program:
API Flammability Study
Holley Performance Products Test Results
Off-Road Test Program
US DOE Long Term Mileage Accumulation Update
CaRFG Test Report Edits
No comments were received regarding the summary of the previous meeting.
Copies of presentations or materials given at this meeting are enclosed
with this summary.
II. API Flammability Study
Mr. Steve Welstand presented the findings from the American Petroleum
Institute's evaluation of the flammability of fuel tank vapors from low RVP
gasolines. The study evaluated two base fuels without oxygenates and five
reformulated gasolines with varying amounts of MTBE and ethanol.
The test results show that the upper temperature limit of flammability
increases as RVP is reduced. They also show that the base fuel composition
does not affect the temperature limits of flammability significantly. Adding
MTBE to a base fuel did not show any consistent increase in the upper
temperature limits. However, ethanol blends may increase the upper
temperature limit by about 4oF on average. The study should be available
some time in March. For further questions or details on the API flammability
study, please call Mr. Welstand at (510) 242-4150.
III. Holley Performance Products Test Results
Holley Performance Products Company tested several fuel system elastomer
components and power valves used in their products. Some of the materials
tested were Viton(R), Buna-N, and chemprene. In its report Holley Performance
Products Company concluded: "As a result of contact and operation tests, it
has been found that California Phase 2 reformulated gas has no detrimental
effect on Holley fuel handling products."
NOTE: Viton(R) is a registered trademark of DuPont Dow Elastomers
IV. Off-Road Test Program
The off-road test program is made up of 14 separate test programs, some
of which are still in progress. Overall, 255 units were tested using CaRFG.
To date, Dolmar-Makita has not found significant differences in multi
position stability tests in chainsaws and brush cutters. Homelite has not
noticed power differences between using CaRFG and conventional fuel in their
evaluation of trimmers. Poulan found that the performance of their trimmers
has been similar using CaRFG and conventional gasoline. However they have
reported two incidents on trimmers in field testing. The cause of the
incidents is currently under review.
IV. U.S. DOE Long Term Mileage Accumulation Update
The Department of Energy completed testing in their long term mileage
accumulation test program, but some of the data is still under review. The
test program comprised five 1994 model year vehicles with a starting odometer
at approximately 20,000 miles. Each vehicle accumulated 30,000 miles using
The results of the test show that no fuel compatibility or performance
issues were raised, and fuel economy decreased about four percent. The
federal RFG fuel used probably does not represent an average federal RFG and
thus produced a greater fuel economy effect than expected on average.
Considering this information, the results do not represent a significant
deviation from the fuel economy results in the On-Road test program.
The subcommittee agreed to include the U.S. DOE test results in the final
The CaRFG test program report is being reviewed by subcommittee members.
Final comments are due by March 6, 1996 and the completed report is expected
to be available in late March.
CBG Program Advisory
and Subcommittee Activities