Taking a Fresh Look at Fuel Additives as a Money Saving Strategy
Apr 5, 2011 12:05 PM ET
From Glenn Croston's blog at CleantechiesGas prices are over $4 a gallon in some markets recently and headed through the roof it seems, with some analysts talking about gas heading toward $5 a gallon by the summer. As unrest across the Middle East roils the oil markets and the price of gas leaps upward, we’re all scrambling for ways to save. Some strategies we’ve heard about many times before. We know we should drive slower and more conservatively, without the sudden starts and stops. We know we should avoid unnecessary trips, inflate our tires, get a tune-up, and carpool or rideshare. And you can bet that just like the last time the price of gas suddenly spiked in the summer of 2008, we will be doing all of these things again, working hard to save our wallets from extinction. If you happen to be in the market for a new car, you can look for a fuel efficient model or maybe even one of the latest and greenest options like the Nissan Leaf. But once you’ve done all of these things, what else can we do? Fuel additives may be an option that’s worth looking at again. As a billion dollar market with many different products available, there’s always a lot of discussion about what these products can achieve. Fuel additives are meant to combust fuel more completely, keep your engine cleaner, and reduce maintenance costs. And by doing this, they could reduce emissions and boost mileage. Skeptics say that fuel additives can’t live up to these claims, but there’s also a lot of information saying that they are worth a closer look, and it seems to make sense that if you’re engine is cleaner and fuel burns better, you’ll get more out of your car. Syntek Global is the producer of the fuel additive XFT (Extreme Fuel Treatment), which includes several components designed to improve engine performance. “The various advantages of XFT differentiate our product from every other product the market has to offer in this business sector,” said John Winterholler, President of Syntek Global. “The product was first patented in 1986 and has been re-patented several times since then. Our product is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency, and there is lots of scientific research and proof behind XFT.” On March 9, Syntek Global won an EcoVisionary Award in Miami, along with other business leaders like MetLife, Hanes, and Office Depot. Dana Lee in Atlanta is introducing drivers, equipment operators and fleet managers in the US to Syntek Global’s Xtreme Fuel Treatment (XFT). XFT has been around for over 20 years, and has been used mostly by industrial vehicle operators to improving the performance of diesel generators, heavy machinery and long haul trucks, both with diesel and gasoline engines. XFT users often report an increase in mileage of about 7% or greater as well as a 30% reduction in emissions. It’s good to be skeptical about the huge mileage claims of some additives, and it’s often hard to judge individual testimonials about products, but these reports with XFT sound reasonable, if backed up by other data. It can be difficult for consumers to observe changes in mileage under variable road conditions, making lab testing of fuel additives a valuable addition to seeing if these products are worth the investment. Lab tests of XFT have shown the increased mileage and reduced emissions as well, adding another piece of information that additives like this may provide a useful way to save in addition to other measures. Whatever happens in the Middle East, the growing demand for fuel in Asia and shrinking worldwide oil supply means that the price of gas can only go in one direction over the long run. As the age of cheap oil passes, we’ll need a range of solutions helping us to make the most of our fuel. So do your homework with fuel additives, make sure you read the list of ingredients, and then make your own decision about the benefits for your wallet and the environment. If a product is good for the environment as well as your wallet, then it’s worth thinking about making it part of your solution to the rising price of oil. Article by Glenn Croston, author of “75 Green Businesses” and “Starting Green”, and the founder of Starting Up Green, helping green businesses to start green and grow green.