Lowe's, Walmart and True Value Retailers Bring OPEI's 'Look Before You Pump' Ethanol Message Direct to Consumers

 Lowe's, Walmart and True Value Retailers Bring OPEI's 'Look Before You Pump'
                     Ethanol Message Direct to Consumers

--OPEI's consumer protection campaign hitting major retailer store aisles,
catalogs and circulars this spring; independent dealers continue support of
industry educational program--

PR Newswire

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb. 20, 2014

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Feb. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --As consumers head to retail
stores this spring to purchase mowers, chain saws, generators, blowers,
trimmers, power washers, and a host of other small engine equipment, they will
see an important ethanol fuel message from the Outdoor Power Equipment
Institute (OPEI), an international trade association representing 100 small
engine, utility vehicle and outdoor power equipment manufacturers and
suppliers. The message to 'Look Before You Pump' will help consumers protect
their outdoor power and small engine equipment investments.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140220/PH68166-INFO-a )
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140220/PH68166-INFO-b )

In thousands of retail store aisles across the country and in spring preview
circulars and catalogs, consumers will be reminded that it is harmful and
illegal to use higher than 10 percent ethanol gas in any outdoor power
equipment or other non-road product, such as boats, snowmobiles and
motorcycles, with the exception of "flex-fuel" engine products. Independent
dealers began using the 'Look Before You Pump' message in their stores in fall
2013.

Lowe's and Walmart are supporting the educational program through in-store
signage and circulars, and True Value Hardware will highlight the program on
the back cover of its spring outdoor power catalog.

Additionally, ScrippsNetworks Interactive's DIY Network is supporting the
program through social media promotion, custom research and in-show
messaging.

Known by its emblematic prominent, red warning hand symbol indicating 'OK' for
10 percent ethanol and 'No' for mid-level ethanol blends (such as E15, E30,
E85), the 'Look Before You Pump' campaign is spreading nationwide as ethanol
blended fuels containing more than 10 percent ethanol are made available in
the marketplace for "flex-fuel" automobiles.

"OPEI's 'Look Before You Pump' campaign is designed to protect consumers'
equipment investment by educating them on using the right fuel for the right
product," said Michael Jones, chief merchandising officer at Lowe's. "The
campaign offers a simple yet effective way to inform customers about the
adverse impact of higher than 10 percent ethanol fuel blends on outdoor power
equipment for which it is not designed."

According to senior vice president and chief merchandising officer at True
Value Company, Ken Goodgame, "OPEI's 'Look Before You Pump' campaign is
exactly what our stores need to meet the challenges posed by higher ethanol
fuel blends. We used to see about a 70 percent fuel related failure rate, but
now with E10 and E15, we find that up to 80 percent of all portable and
four-stroke OPE failures that come back in our stores are related to fuel, so
we recommend customers use a fuel stabilizer. Ethanol has proven to be a
corrosive and problematic fuel additive, and we are keen to share the 'Look
Before You Pump' warning with our customers."

According to Todd Teske, chairman, president and CEO of Briggs & Stratton
Corporation, the world's largest manufacturer of small engines, and OPEI's
board chair, "It is critical that we educate all users of outdoor power
equipment about the dangers misfueling can cause to their equipment. Our
number one goal is to protect our customers, and the more we can get this
information in front of them, the better off they will be."

"We've been very pleased with the level of support for 'Look Before You Pump'
from retailers and dealers who sell small engine and outdoor power equipment.
They understand the importance of cautioning American consumers and the
business owners whose livelihood depends on our equipment to be more mindful
at the gas pump. It's imperative that the consumer is educated about the
changing fuels marketplace and getting the right fuel for the right product,"
said Kris Kiser, president and CEO of OPEI.

OPEI urges consumers to read their equipment operating manual before filling
equipment with gasoline to ensure they use the right fuel for that engine. For
more information, visit www.LookBeforeYouPump.com and search for #LookB4UPump
on Twitter and Facebook.

Recent research shows high-ethanol blends of gasoline can damage or destroy
small engines not designed to handle it. A summer 2013 OPEI/Harris Interactive
study shows the vast majority of Americans (71 percent) are "not at all sure"
if it is illegal or legal to put high level ethanol gas (i.e., anything higher
than 10 percent ethanol) into engines such as those in boats, mowers, chain
saws, snow mobiles, generators and other engine products.

About OPEI
The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI) is an international trade
association representing 100 small engine, utility vehicle and outdoor power
equipment manufacturers and suppliers of consumer and commercial outdoor power
equipment. The OPEI Education Foundation is the creative force behind
TurfMutt.com. OPEI is a recognized Standards Development Organization for the
American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and active internationally
through the International Standards Organization (ISO) in the development of
safety and performance standards. OPEI is managing partner of GIE+EXPO, the
industry's annual industry tradeshow. For more information, visit
www.OPEI.org.

SOURCE Outdoor Power Equipment Institute

Website: http://opei.org
Contact: Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI), Caroline March-Long,
Caroline@FourLeafPR.com, 434-295-5938 (phone), 434-760-1948 (cell)
 
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