By Donn Larson, Owner and President of Larson Sales, Inc. I purchased a new Poulan 3400 chainsaw back in 1978 and have used nothing but approved ethanol blends in it since. To this day, the only repair I’ve had to make, aside from those to the chains and bars, was replacing one carburetor kit. It still starts and runs great today. As the owner of an outdoor power equipment store, I support ethanol. I have successfully used it for many years and have not encountered a single issue. This may be surprising to those of you who have heard the false ethanol warnings spread by Big Oil. They have spent millions on a campaign of fear and misinformation to mislead the public and maintain their monopoly on the liquid fuels market. Instead of just accepting this misinformation, the public needs to ask questions and do research of their own. We cannot simply believe information that “someone told us” or that “we read on the internet.” It is our duty to know where information comes from so we can understand the implications of the remarks. A great analogy would be, are you willing to accept negative accusations against your family members without knowing where they came from or if they were accurate? Of course not. It is critical to find the source and evaluate it. More than 95 percent of U.S. gasoline contains up to 10 percent ethanol to boost octane or meet air quality requirements. Ethanol has helped to lower the price of gas simply by lowering our dependence on fossil fuel. It’s also renewable and improves the environment—Big Oil can’t claim that! Instead, Big Oil claims that ethanol has driven up the food prices, which couldn’t be more incorrect. If that were the case, now that gas is down in price,why are you not seeing a similar drop in your grocery bill? Because the excuse was falsely used to blame ethanol for problems it has nothing to do with. The owner’s manual for my chainsaw stated that any use of alcohol would void the warranty. I knew that using ethanol would be just fine and I have proven that to be true because as I said, it still runs great today and starts on the second pull! I also use ethanol in most everything that I own—my over the road vehicles (they put on well over 125,000 miles per year collectively), my boat, mowers, blowers, etc.—and have never had a single problem. I also properly maintain my equipment and use fresh gas. While ethanol will not kill an engine, poor maintenance, old gas and misinformation just might. Make sure you have those three things straight and your small engines could be around for over 30 years too.