Instructables

Automotive fuel hack

Improve mileage 2-3 MPG, both diesel and gas, smoother running and quicker accelleration. This was not my idea, however I felt this was the forum to share it with.
 
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Step 1:

Purchase 100% pure Acetone and add to full tank of gas or diesel at the ratio of 2oz. per 10gal. of fuel. Do not use cheap plastic container as a refill container as it will melt. I bought a Cutex nail polish remover bottle (4oz), ran the contents through and reused the container.

Step 2:

Results 1997 Ranger 172K 3.0L V6 @ 3.75 oz per fill up= Went from a measley 17mpg to 19.34mpg! Additionally the truck has smoother accelleration and spark knocking has all but vanished completely. As I understand it, the acetone acts as an agent to help disperse the gasoline in the combustion chamber increasing amount of fuel actually burned vs. sending unspent fuel into the atmosphere. Any simple search terms including "acetone as a fuel additive" will yield many hits, some with much comparo data broken down by manufacturer.
*added benefit to diesel guys: reduction in smoke!
darrenhall1 year ago
Quick question - how does this effect the life of the CAT if at all??
Correct! It does work! My 1995 Dodge Caravan went from 18 mpg, to 22. Now that I "hyper mileage", I've added even more. Google hyper mileage. It's simply a driving technique that works.
hellinabox4 years ago
Unless the chemical you choose to use as a substitute is non-reactive with plastic, you will destroy your fuel lines. I support your idea to find a substitute to fossil fuel but must make it clear that acetone will damage fuel delivery components. My suggestion is to check your vin number to see if your vehicle is flex fuel compatible and run E85.
ingesumadre5 years ago
GREAT TIP
I honestly don't know of any diesel guys that would actually want a reduction in smoke...
smoke mean more carbon deposits. it also waste fuel. if you are able to tune your engine to burn cleaner, you save more fuel.
tiber6 years ago
DONT DO IT

If it melts your plastic jug, it's going to melt the gaskets in your engine, your fuel lines, and your fuel injectors also.(which are sealed against the engine with cute little plastic boots).
Anyone care to donate a car to science? Just try it for a month and then look at what the damage is. I'm a bit disappointed with the car talk guys, they didn't think to say that the acetone should never be poured in straight, but should always be pre-mixed. Doesn't matter if it works or not, they should advise pre-mixing for the curious. Maybe they were too caught up in the corporate mind-set after that talk they had with the oil engineer. The evaporation problem should be addressed as a potential error factor. If the acetone is evaporating back out of your gas tank before any meaningful mileage is racked-up, then you can't say what effect it would have on your mileage. I have used acetone, and I know it's gone fast! It would be neat if someone were to come up with an automatic mixer. That is, to add the acetone on demand shortly before the intake valves. That way, a proper estimate can be made. Cool points if it's plc controlled and in-line just before a fuel-rail! It might be better to test this out on a constant load engine, such as a generator. That would allow spraying the acetone on demand, like in a nitrous set-up. I think a real expert would be one of the fuel wizards out there on the drag-strip. Those guys who make it a regular practice to shave tenths of a second by mixing their own gas ought to know if acetone is worth any further research.
plumbhack (author) 8 years ago
To date I'm at 5 tanks worth of data. And I'd like to see the Mythbuster's episode...I rarely miss that show. Personal fav was the tailgate up or down camparo. I'm also thinking that my increase was due to having a higher mileage engine. The smoother running, noticeably quieter engine is also a nice benefit. But after reading the blurb about the fuel neck filler being eaten I think I'd better quit while I'm ahead. Thanks braddk.
I'm going to be watching this episode of Mythbuster's the first chance I get. (Episode 53, exploding pants) Regarding the acetone peeling off your paint and disolving the fuel filler neck, my plan is to mix the acetone with gas in a small container so it's not straight acetone. Then dump that into my tank. Acetone evaporates very quickly (faster than gas) so if any drops are spilled on the way in, the dilution ratio will increase until all the acetone is gone before the gas evaporates. I haven't yet, but I will be trying the acetone myself.
Try here for the Mythbuster's Results... Episode 53 - "Exploding Pants" - Original airdate: May 10, 2006

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MythBusters_(season_3)
plumbhack (author) 8 years ago
To date I'm at 5 tanks worth of data. And I'd like to see the Mythbuster's episode...I rarely miss that show. Personal fav was the tailgate up or down camparo. I'm also thinking that my increase was due to having a higher mileage engine. The smoother running, noticeably quieter engine is also a nice benefit. Oh, and thanks for the feedback!
braddk8 years ago
I'd look at the following link. It's from Car Talk.

http://www.cartalk.com/content/columns/Archive/2006/January/08.html
The question now is... would the transcript writer know to put "boooogus" with 4 o's if he did not specifically say 'with 4 o's'? It just boggles the mind :P
For completeness, how did you get your mpg information? As in, how many trials did you run before computing your averages?
trebuchet038 years ago
Ditto Ironfu.... The problem really is that today's engines are near their max efficiency.... If you increase the operating temps, you should be able to squeeze a bit more out (depends if the temp increase is significant enough) -- but things will wear down faster :/

I'd also think that if there really REALLY was a significant increase in fuel economy... A petrol company would jump on that very fast. Could you imagine if exxon or BP could claim (and back up) that their fuel is guaranteed to increase your mileage? They obviously are not making this claim (probably because the FTC or similar agency would jump down their throats).

Yes, I have tried this... but I'm categorizing it as snake oil...
Ironfu8 years ago
I've seen this done on Mythbusters, and they found that it really doen't work. In fact I think they found it actually hurt the mileage more than it helped