How to Make a Car Run on Something Other Than Gas

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Various alternative fuels are now available on the market.
Various alternative fuels are now available on the market.

With gas prices getting higher, many of us may be tempted to convert our vehicles to run on alternative energy sources. Whether you are looking to save the planet or just some money it is certainly an idea that deserves careful thought.

Things You'll Need

  • Conversion kits
  • Mechanic
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Instructions

  1. Liquid Petroleum Gas

    • 1
      Your car can be converted to run on liquid petroleum gas, but it is not available everywhere.
      Your car can be converted to run on liquid petroleum gas, but it is not available everywhere.

      Convert your gas- or diesel-powered vehicle to run on liquid petroleum gas. All you need to do is buy a converter kit. These are readily available on the Internet from sites such as technocarb.com. The kit is not cheap but will eventually pay for itself.

    • 2

      If you are an amateur mechanic, then you might want to try fitting the converter yourself, although it is recommended you get a trained professional to do it for you.

    • 3

      Go online to find liquid petroleum gas at altfuelprices.com/stations/LPG. The main drawback of this gas is that it is not widely available at gas stations. Lists of where it is available are posted on the Internet.

    Hydrogen

    • 4
      Hydrogen is seen by some experts as the future of car fuel.
      Hydrogen is seen by some experts as the future of car fuel.

      Convert your vehicle to run on hydrogen power. Gas-powered cars can be converted to run exclusively on compressed hydrogen; however, diesel cars can be converted to run on an enriched diesel hydrogen mix.

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      Purchase a conversion kit. These kits can be purchased for a wide range of modern vehicles. However, converting to hydrogen is not as simple as it is with other fuels so it is strongly recommended that you get a professional to do it for you.

    • 6

      Get out your wallet. Hydrogen is becoming more available at gas stations, but it currently costs about the same as petrol or diesel. This solution is for those looking to save the planet, not just money.

    Ethanol

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      Ethanol has been seen for years as a workable alternative to gasoline.
      Ethanol has been seen for years as a workable alternative to gasoline.

      Convert any gasoline-powered car to run on ethanol or pure alcohol with some very simple modifications to your car using basic tools.

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      Go online to find guides and kits on how to covert your vehicle at e85carbs.com. These have dropped in price substantially. If you are not confident in carrying out the work, consult a mechanic for advice.

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      Fill up at a station. Ethanol is readily available across America, but its environmental credentials are hotly contested. It is only an additive to normal gasoline, so it is not all that much cheaper, either.

    Vegetable Oil

    • 10
      Vegetable oil is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative fuel.
      Vegetable oil is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative fuel.

      Make sure your vehicle has a modern diesel engine to convert it to run on vegetable oil. Older diesel engines are not as easy to convert, and it is impossible with a gas engine.

    • 11

      Buy a conversion kit from a local retailer. These are widely available and can be purchased over the Internet. They can be pricey, but with the money you save in fuel it will eventually pay for itself.

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      Get a professional mechanic to fit the converter for you, but if you are confident enough, try it yourself.

    • 13

      Visit restaurants to get a hold of used vegetable oil. Brand-new oil is readily available but can be quite expensive. The best place to get a hold of used oil is from restaurants. Let the oil settle for a week so all the food waste sinks and then strain the oil through a filter bag.

      The vehicle will require a small amount of diesel to start and to keep it running until the oil is up to temperature.

    Electric

    • 14
      A range of electric cars are readily available for purchase.
      A range of electric cars are readily available for purchase.

      Convert your car to run on electric. Electric cars are becoming ever more popular. However, you can convert your car.

    • 15

      Buy a conversion kit. The kits are available online from convert-2-ev.com and can be relatively easy to fit yourself, although it is recommended you hire a qualified mechanic.

    • 16

      Find a place to plug in your car. Several cities are introducing plug-in parking spaces, including San Francisco.

    • 17

      Be aware of the issues that come with electric cars, such as the time it takes to recharge and the lack of speed.

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  • Photo Credit luxury car - model toy car image by alma_sacra from Fotolia.com petrol image by Alex Ishchenko from Fotolia.com off-road bio diesel / hydrogen powered limo image by monamakela.com from Fotolia.com Corn image by DSL from Fotolia.com bottle of oil image by Adrian Hillman from Fotolia.com electricity image by Mat Hayward from Fotolia.com

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