Published on January 16, 2008
"Honour Teachers Day" is the day when students give thanks to their teachers for educating them. From ancient times, Thais consider their teacher to be someone who has given them as much as their parents. So students put together garlands of flowers that represent striving for knowledge and wisdom to present to their teachers.
But "National Teachers' Day" on January 16 is the day when teachers get together and take part in activities that are not related to their students. In other words. this day may be considered "Teachers' Career Day".
I am writing about this subject because I was once a teacher at Chiang Mai Teachers College, and whenever this day arrives I cannot help thinking that if I had remained a teacher there, I would not have to live life in the fast lane today.
And starting from January 1 this year, Thailand began selling E20 gasohol, which is made of 80-per-cent petrol and 20-per-cent ethanol. The retail price has been set at Bt6 per litre lower than conventional 95-octane unleaded petrol.
The much-lower retail price of E20 has attracted motorists' attention. Although only 30 stations offer E20 gasohol in Bangkok, a large number of motorists are calling in to check which makes and models are compatible with the new fuel.
First, we must understand that E20 reacts more violently to certain metallic and rubber components than E10 gasohol, so vehicles that are compatible with E20 must have components that are specially designed for its use by the manufacturer.
At present, vehicles that can run on 91-octane unleaded, 95-octane unleaded or E10 gasohol and want to use E20 will require a large number of modifications of the components in the fuel system, such as the fuel pump, fuel line and throttle valve. You can say any component that makes contact with the fuel must be changed.
Those who drive E20 vehicles and fear they would be unable to purchase the fuel when driving upcountry need not worry, since the vehicles can also run on E10 or regular unleaded petrol, as well. There will be no damage whatsoever.
The introduction of E20 gasohol will also change the face of the retail fuel business in Thailand. Prior to this, you could drive into any service station and have the vehicle refuelled no matter whether it was powered by diesel or petrol.
But from now on, since there are many more types of fuel to choose from, it will be difficult for any station to store and offer so many types of fuel.
So in the future, when you want to drive into a station for refuelling, you must also make sure it has the type of fuel you want.
And in order to make sure there are no mistakes in the type of fuel being pumped, you must leave the car to check personally that the attendant has picked up the correct fuel nozzle. You cannot just sit in the car and trust the attendant any more. Not if you don't want to risk damage to your engine.
E-mail your motoring questions to Pattanadesh@nationgroup.com.
By Pattanadesh Asasappakij
The Luxury LS 460 is a wonderfully comfaortable car fitted with all mod cons, althoough not necessarily the most fun vehicle to drive.