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jmdomini

Converting a 2008 Malibu Classic/2007 Malibu V6 3.5L?

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Outlaw,

Good question.  The simple answer is even if our kit was used on a flex fuel vehicle, the ecu would adjust accordingly.  Our kit in a sense would be adding more fuel and the ecu would be adjusting to the correct mixture.

 

Yes- I wonder if one would ever get a "rich code bank 1" from trims hitting the minus side. ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

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OK I filled her up with half a tank of E85 on lunch today (so it's running 50% E85).Drove it home 50 miles, mostly highway with no apparent ill effects. Engine seems to be running nicely, no hesitation, hard starting, sputtering or anything else unusual. It took at WOT twice and acceleration was normal. Got 24.7 MPG which is within the normal range I get of that trip on gasoline (24-28MPG). Keep in mind the car has 94,000 miles on it and could use new spark plugs. So we'll see over the next few days how it goes.

 

Experimenting beyond 50% gets messy since it's not like I can buy E60. I'll have to do the math and  figure out how many gallons of each. First thing is to figure out the capacity of the gas tank, I've never let it get down to empty.

 

1outlaw, right now I only have a very basic scanner. It's the kind that will just let you read the codes and turn off the CEL and that's all. I'll have to check out the one you mentioned. I'd kill for a Tech 2 tool that the dealers have, then I could really poke around. They cost some serious $$$$$$ though.  :o

 

Johnny Energy, thanks for the information. I'm not quite ready to go down that road yet. If would be nice if someone could come up with a chip solution, or something that would plug in to the OBDII connector for these sorts of situations. I was wondering if it would be possible to make a harness that would go at the ECU end of things instead of on the injectors themselves, I haven't found a wiring diagram so far for the connectors on the ECU however.

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Well, I got a little over over confident after doing so well with 50% E85 and seeing Dan's great results with the 2.2L and decided to throw 100% E85 at my 3.5L. That turned out to be not such a good idea. Filled it up and drove it home a few miles from the gas station and all was well. Took it out the next morning started fine, it became obvious within about five minutes however that the engine was not happy. Accelerated gently from a stop sign and PING PING from the engine, uh oh detonation x2. CEL came on about 30 seconds after that. After the CEL things seemed to stabilize and the engine ran normally for 50 miles. Went to visit my parents, so the car was parked for a while. Left early evening and same exact performance again including the x2 detonations followed by everything running normally for 50 miles.

 

I pulled the codes, which were lean on bank 1 &2 (P0171,P0174) didn't need a scan tool to tell me that! Filled it back up with regular gas, I at roughly 60% E85 at this point with no CEL's and normal performance. I would say that to err on the side of caution, I would consider 50% to be the maximum safe ratio at this point.

 

There is no immediate apparent damage done to the engine by the detonations. I don't hear any bits of metals getting slapped around by the pistons. I will have to keep an eye out for oil consumption and coolant level. I hope my recklessness didn't seriously reduce the lifespan of the engine.  :'(

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I have a 2008 scion tC with the TRD supercharger kit which includes higher flow fuel injectors and an ECU flash to not throw CEL and P0171 on leaner than normal conditions.  Pure E85 gives ping, ping, ping no power, hard starting and CEL.    50-60% ethanol plus regular 87 octane gas runs great.  Normally I have to use 91+ octane gas.  75% E85 with 25% regular 87 octane gas mixture seems to work well.  I wait till the tank is close to empty, put in 1/8 tank of gas, then 3/4 E85, and 1/8 regular gas to top it off.    At the Meijer by me E85 is in the same pump housing as regular gas, so I can do it all in one stop.  A little OCD I suppose, but I want to be sure the fuel is well mixed in the tank.

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Amazon lists and Actron scan tool for about $60.  Harbor Freight carriers a similar thing.  It is a fairly compact, bare bones ODB II scanner that can pull codes and reset CEL(clear codes). It gets its power from the ODB II port

I carry one in the glove compartment in case of CEL.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Actron-CP9125-PocketScan-Code-Reader/dp/B0007LEG2K

 

http://www.harborfreight.com/can-obdii-code-reader-with-multilingual-menu-98568.html

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Hi All, wanted to drop in with an update. The past month has been crazy busy, so I haven't really had time to post. Unfortunately the lower intake manifold gasket and head gasket failed causing anti-freeze to leak into the oil leading to major engine damage. Fortunately rebuilding the engine was covered by the power-train warranty, made it just under the wire since I have 97,000 miles on it. However there were $2200 in additional repairs needed that were not covered. Still having issues with the car, back to the dealer it goes on Friday. The dealer is not aware of my adventures with ethanol, it had been several fill-ups since ethanol was last in the car.

 

I had changed the spark plugs since experiencing the detonation and did not see any evidence of detonation caused damage their either. Some of the electrodes were quite eroded, but other than that nothing unusual.

 

So the question is, could running ethanol in a non-flex fuel car have been responsible for my seal failures and resulting engine failure? Or is it just fine GM quality to blame here?

 

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Hi All, wanted to drop in with an update. The past month has been crazy busy, so I haven't really had time to post. Unfortunately the lower intake manifold gasket and head gasket failed causing anti-freeze to leak into the oil leading to major engine damage. Fortunately rebuilding the engine was covered by the power-train warranty, made it just under the wire since I have 97,000 miles on it. However there were $2200 in additional repairs needed that were not covered. Still having issues with the car, back to the dealer it goes on Friday. The dealer is not aware of my adventures with ethanol, it had been several fill-ups since ethanol was last in the car.

 

I had changed the spark plugs since experiencing the detonation and did not see any evidence of detonation caused damage their either. Some of the electrodes were quite eroded, but other than that nothing unusual.

 

So the question is, could running ethanol in a non-flex fuel car have been responsible for my seal failures and resulting engine failure? Or is it just fine GM quality to blame here?

well that sucks !

 

 

Looks like GM had leaking gaskets on some of the V6's because of plastic gaskets but looks like 2006/7 was the last they used plastic..

 

 

For Starters check with your mechanic and ask him if it was plastic

 

 

 

BTW..if ethanol would cause a gasket leak it would be years not 1 tank

 

 

 

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jm I missed that you ran full E85 and then this ..

Accelerated gently from a stop sign and PING PING from the engine, uh oh detonation x2. CEL came on about 30 seconds after that. After the CEL things seemed to stabilize and the engine ran normally for 50 miles. Went to visit my parents, so the car was parked for a while. Left early evening and same exact performance again including the x2 detonations followed by everything running normally for 50 miles.

 

Bad detonation absolutely can cause gasket failure...not 100% certain that was the cause but sounds like you got way to lean..yes for other folks testing in NON FFVs and you get bad knocking dont drive another 100 miles .. you need to add gasoline and bring your E content down.

 

 

And dont just fill up on E85 ..work your way up  E30, E40 E60....the first sign of knocking , detonation back off . Not every vehicle is the same some will be able to run E85 some E60 and others just E30

 

 

Dont get in a  hurry in your testing

 

 

JM also GM did have a LOT of intake leaking due to Plastic Gaskets ..still be interested in knowing if your had the plastic gaskets

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