100% Et_anol Free

When you know how to make ethanol you may bypass the gas station

I can get a complex sometimes when I watch high school kids who know how to make ethanol and convert their vehicles to run on left-over cooking grease.  How can it be that people 20-30 years younger than me are smart enough to tap into renewable energy resources this way?  Why do I still lamely pull up at the gas station each week?

Its time to play… are you smarter than a teenager that knows how to make ethanol!  But before we get started, let’s go with a teaser fact about ethanol of which you are probably not aware:  it has been used in the engines of cars racing at the Indy 500 for more than 80 years!  Surprising as that may be, you probably do know that your vehicle is not running on pure gasoline.  Many states mandate a blend of gas-ethanol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Whether from corn, sugar cane, switch grass or other natural materials, biofuels are the wave of the future.  Amazingly, some innovators have come up with ways to convert waste into ethanol!  Can you believe it?  With a family of 6, we could probably power a small fleet!  And all of it is at the amazing cost of less than $1 per gallon!

Some cars and trucks are already retrofitted to run on higher blend of ethanol (so-called “flexfuel vehicles”).  Others may require some tinkering before you wean them off the gasoline that they love so much.

The DIY aspect of making ethanol is particularly appealing to some people.  Heck, people have been brewing their own ethanol for years!   Though I caution you against sampling the fuel for your car, the relationship between making ethanol and beer brewing or wine fermentation is quite close.

Before we get started, here’s a series of videos to consider.

First, the why and where:

Next, the what:

And finally, the how to make ethanol:

Gasohol (Ethanol)

Learn how to make ethanol

Why are you interested in how to make biofuel?  Is it because the two main by-products of burning it are water and CO2?  Is it since it is really inexpensive to make?  Perhaps its the added efficiency you will get when your car runs longer and cooler than with plain gasoline.

Some people call ethanol “liquid solar fuel.”  This is because plants store sunlight energy as starches and sugars.  Releasing those components (just as a human does) is a powerful way to energize.  In about 5-8 years, experts expect that 20% of cars will be fueled by ethanol.  Perhaps that number will rise as gas prices always do.

There are many sites on the Internet that give you step by step instructions for making ethanol.  The extra tips here will be that you will need special-grade yeast for brewing your ethanol mix.  In addition, save over-ripe fruit or ask your grocer for left-overs that may be past its prime for regular consumption.

With a solar still and a hydrometer, you can make ethanol by mixing the yeast and fruit first, allowing it to ferment for 10-14 days, and then put it into the still.  Within about 2-3 weeks, you’ll have your own, homemade ethanol to use to power your vehicles!  Either convert your engines, or mix with gasoline to provide fuel for your car, truck, lawn-mover, leaf-blower or more!

Once you know how to make ethanol, you can be on your way to a greener, more sustainable lifestyle.  In future posts, we’ll go further into the steps for ethanol production, and look at other alternative fuels.

Are you interested in how to make ethanol?  Please let us know below.

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