UL Statement on Storage of E85 in Tanks and Pipes

Storage Tanks and Pipes FAQ October 15, 2007

How can I tell if newly installed tanks, pipes, or other fuel storage equipment are certified for use with E85?
UL does not provide a specific E85 rating for underground pipes and storage tanks. However, certification ratings that include E85 can be determined as follows:

For fiberglass storage tanks: UL has not certified fiberglass storage tanks specifically for E85, but does provide an optional certification rating for high-percentage blend ethanol fuels including E85. If the product in question has been certified to the highest rating, then the Listing Mark will state that the tank is suitable for use with alcohols and alcohol/gasoline mixtures.

For steel tanks, cathodic tanks, composite tanks jacketed tanks and coated tanks: UL does not offer a specific certification program that covers E85 for steel, cathodic, composite and coated underground and aboveground storage tanks, but offers a general listing for flammable and combustible liquids that includes high-percentage blend ethanol fuels such as E85. Accepted industry practices have been well established to require regular inspection and maintenance procedures to mitigate the higher potential for degradation associated with higher blend ethanol fuels.

For underground piping: UL has not certified underground piping specifically for E85, but does provide an optional “concentrated fuel” certification rating for high-percentage blend ethanol fuels ranging from E50 to E100. If the piping has been certified for the concentrated fuel rating, then E85 (85% ethanol/15% gasoline) is covered within that range.

If you have a question about proper application of UL Listed equipment, feel free to contact UL Regulatory Affairs.

What special considerations need to be addressed for newly installed tanks and pipes used with E85?
Accepted industry practices,including regular inspection and maintenance procedures, have been established to mitigate potential problems resulting from degradation associated with higher blend ethanol fuels.

What impact does converting a fuel storage system to E85 have?
UL’s Listing program is based on conformance to applicable requirements at the time of manufacture. Any subsequent modification to the product, or nature of its use, is beyond the scope of the Listing, and UL cannot establish any conclusion about the continued compliance of the modified application without further investigation. Information on possible effects of conversion of an existing site to E85 usage is available from the US Department of Energy website (http://www.eere.energy.gov/afdc/e85toolkit/converting_petroleum.html).

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