When you pull up to a flex fuel pump, there are a lot of options—and American Ethanol is responsible for providing most of them. The result is a wide range of choices—and a lot of numbers. Here’s a quick way to decipher what you see:

What is a flex fuel pump?

A flex fuel pump offers several American Ethanol blends. While higher blends of American Ethanol (E20 and above) are approved for use in flex fuel vehicles only, flex fuel pumps also offer E10, Unleaded88/E15 and may offer ordinary unleaded gasoline and “premium” gasoline. “Blender pump” is another term used to describe this type of dispenser.

Where can you find higher blends of American Ethanol?

Some retailers carry one or more of these higher flex fuel blends, which are approved for year-round use in flex fuel vehicles (FFVs). If you own a FFV, try all the blends to see what works best for you.

Those numbers on the fuel selection buttons indicate the octane rating of the fuel

Octane is a measure of the ignition quality of gasoline. The higher the octane number, the less susceptible the fuel is to “knocking.” Knocking occurs when the fuel prematurely burns in the engine’s combustion chamber due to compression—instead of being ignited by the spark as the engine is designed. The higher the octane number, the more compression the fuel can withstand before igniting. Ethanol adds octane to gasoline—and does so with a renewable, clean-burning octane source. The higher the ethanol blend, the higher the octane rating.

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