What Is The Difference Between E85 And E87

If you’re in the market for a fuel that’s more environmentally friendly and efficient, you’ve probably come across E85 and E87. While both are ethanol-based fuels, they have some differences that you need to be aware of before making a decision.

In this article, we’ll explain the basics of E85 and E87, their benefits, compatibility with vehicles, and factors to consider when choosing between them.

Firstly, let’s define E85 and E87. E85 is a blend of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline, while E87 is a blend of 87% ethanol and 13% gasoline. The difference in ethanol content may seem small, but it can have a significant impact on the performance of your vehicle.

Understanding the differences between these fuels can help you make an informed decision about which one is right for your car and your driving needs. So, buckle up and let’s dive into the world of E85 and E87.

Understanding the Basics of E85 and E87

You may be wondering, “What’s the big deal between E85 and E87?”Well, let me tell you, understanding the differences can make a huge impact on your vehicle’s performance and the environment.

E85 and E87 are both types of gasoline that contain different amounts of ethanol. The fuel composition of E85 is 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline, while E87 has a lower ethanol content of 87% gasoline and 13% ethanol.

The difference in ethanol content affects the fuel’s octane rating and can have a significant impact on your vehicle’s performance. E85 has a higher octane rating than E87, which means it can provide more power and better performance for vehicles designed to run on it. However, E85 also has less energy per gallon than E87, which means you may need to fill up more frequently.

Understanding the ethanol content of your fuel can help you make informed decisions about which type of gasoline is best for your vehicle and driving habits.

Benefits of Using E85 and E87

If you’re looking to improve your vehicle’s performance and reduce emissions, opting for ethanol fuel blends like E85 or E87 can be a great choice.

One of the advantages of using E85 or E87 is that they contain more oxygen than traditional gasoline, which allows for a more complete combustion process and can lead to increased power and efficiency. Additionally, ethanol has a higher octane rating than gasoline, meaning it can withstand higher levels of compression without detonating. This can result in improved engine performance and a smoother ride.

Another advantage of ethanol fuel blends is that they are renewable and domestically produced, which can reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

However, there are also some disadvantages to using E85 or E87. One of the main drawbacks is that they can be less energy-dense than traditional gasoline, meaning you may need to fill up more often. Additionally, not all vehicles are compatible with these fuel blends, so it’s important to check your owner’s manual or consult with a mechanic before making the switch.

Overall, while there are some potential drawbacks to using ethanol fuel blends, the benefits of increased performance and reduced emissions make them a viable option for many drivers.

Compatibility with Vehicles

When choosing an ethanol fuel blend like E85 or E87, it’s important to ensure that your vehicle is compatible with these fuels, as not all cars are designed to run on these blends. E85 and E87 contain a higher ethanol content than regular gasoline, which can affect the fuel efficiency and engine performance of your vehicle.

Most modern vehicles are designed to work with E10, which contains up to 10% ethanol. However, not all cars are built to handle higher ethanol blends like E85 or E87. These fuels can cause damage to parts like fuel injectors, fuel pumps, and fuel lines, which can lead to costly repairs.

In addition, vehicles that are not compatible with these fuels may experience lower fuel efficiency and reduced engine performance, which can affect their overall performance. Before switching to E85 or E87, it’s important to check your vehicle’s compatibility and consult with a professional mechanic to ensure that it is safe to use.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between E85 and E87

When considering whether to use E85 or E87 fuel in your vehicle, there are several factors that you should take into account.

These include the type of vehicle you have, your driving habits, and the availability of the two types of fuel in your area.

To help you make an informed decision, we’ve summarized the key points to consider and provided recommendations for choosing the best fuel for your vehicle.

Summary of Key Points

The main difference between e85 and e87 is the ethanol content. E85 contains 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline, while e87 contains 87% ethanol and 13% gasoline. This difference in ethanol content leads to a difference in octane rating, with e85 providing a higher octane rating than e87.

Key differences between e85 and e87 lie in their ethanol content and octane ratings. E85 contains more ethanol than e87, providing a higher octane rating and thus making it a better option for high-performance vehicles. However, e85 may not be widely available and may require vehicle modifications, while e87 is a more commonly available fuel option.

Ultimately, choosing between e85 and e87 requires careful consideration of the pros and cons of each fuel type.

Recommendations for Choosing the Best Fuel for Your Vehicle

Now that you have a clearer understanding of the differences between e85 and e87, it’s time to move on to choosing the best fuel for your vehicle.

The first factor to consider is fuel efficiency. While e85 may be cheaper at the pump, it has lower energy content than gasoline, meaning you’ll need to fill up more often. On the other hand, e87 has a higher energy content than e85 but is typically more expensive at the pump. Ultimately, you’ll need to compare the cost per mile for each fuel to determine which one will be more cost-effective for your specific vehicle and driving habits.

Another important factor to consider is the environmental impact of the fuel you choose. E85 is often touted as a more environmentally friendly option due to its lower carbon emissions. However, it’s important to note that producing ethanol from corn (the primary source of ethanol in the US) requires a significant amount of energy and resources.

E87 may have a higher carbon footprint, but it can also be produced from renewable sources like sugarcane or cellulosic materials. Ultimately, the best choice for the environment will depend on how the fuel is produced and transported, as well as how efficiently your vehicle uses it.


Now that you have a better understanding of the difference between E85 and E87, you can make an informed decision on which fuel to use for your vehicle.

Remember that E85 contains a higher percentage of ethanol, which can offer better performance and emissions benefits, but may not be compatible with all vehicles. On the other hand, E87 contains a lower percentage of ethanol and may be a safer option for vehicles that are not designed to handle high ethanol blends.

When choosing between E85 and E87, it’s important to consider factors such as vehicle compatibility, fuel efficiency, and cost. Keep in mind that not all gas stations offer E85 or E87, so you may need to plan your route accordingly.

Additionally, it’s crucial to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for fuel type and blend to ensure the longevity and optimal performance of your vehicle.

With these factors in mind, you can make an informed decision on whether to use E85 or E87 for your vehicle.