For Canadian consumers, first responders, farmers, foresters, professional landscape contractors, landscapers, and other small business owners, it’s never been more important to protect your power equipment investments.

The Trudeau administration has stated it will move more quickly to “net zero” emissions. What has not been disclosed to Canadians is the price to be paid in jobs, the economy, and personal losses for damaged power equipment and engines made inoperable. 

By 2050, fossil fuels are expected to be completely banned in Canada, beginning next year.

Starting in 2022, all gasoline sold in Canada at gas stations will be blended with ethanol, including premium gasoline according to proposed regulations. The problem is with blended fuel – gasoline mixed with ethanol, and primarily blends greater than 10%. 

Most engines, particularly older motors, were not built, designed, or warrantied to run on fuel containing more than 10% ethanol. 

At most risk are motors not engineered to run on any blended fuel such as classic cars, motors with carburetors, and 2-stroke engines requiring oil mixed with the fuel.  

The list of affected products includes outdoor power equipment including chainsaws, snow throwers, rototillers, trimmers, mowers.

Additionally, off-road machines. ATVs, boats, and snowmobiles will be impacted. Using higher than 10 percent ethanol can damage or destroy their engines.

Some small equipment manufacturers are now offering pre-mixed fuel, until it is banned completely. For example, a .946 litre of Husqvarna fuel, (pre-mixed to 50:1, 95 Octane, no ethanol) for a chainsaw can be purchased for $12.99 at Canadian Tire. 

Even at almost 13 dollars per litre, the plan is to eventually ban all non-renewable fuel at any price. 

While electric substitution is growing in usage, in reality the world will be using oil and gas for decades to come. 

Consumers and industry need time to adapt. 

We all want to do our part to help ensure energy used is as clean as possible. Until real alternatives to burning fossil fuels are in place, particularly for people living and working in small towns and rural communities, the federal government needs to be told to STOP making energy unaffordable.

The new fuel regulations are like a tax on jobs and investment with no evidence of net benefit to the environment.  

How to protect your engine at the pump

First, understand which fuel is appropriate for your equipment. Read your owner’s manual for specific fueling requirements. Most warranties are voided with the use of inappropriate fuel.

Check the ethanol content at the pump. Ensure it is the right fuel for your engine. Select the correct gasoline for that specific engine. Always reference your owner’s manual for fueling instructions.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

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