Calif.--(Business Wire)-January 2, 2004 --The first automotive gas cap to combine
space-age fluoroelastomer seals with exclusive easy-turn features has just received a
second Executive Order Number from the California Air Resources Board (ARB), permitting
its aftermarket use.
Products, Ltd., of Brookfield, Wisconsin, a design and engineering company, announced
today the company has received ARB Executive Order D - 565-1 for the patented RAM 0-Leak
replacement gas cap.
An Executive Order is issued to a manufacturer if it
is determined by the California Air Resources Board that the replacement part will not
increase emissions. This permits RAM to advertise, sell, and retrofit the 0-Leak caps on
vehicles with screw-type gas caps through the 2004 vehicle model year.
After years of development the RAM 0-Leak cap
incorporates patented fail-safe seal and valve designs with much lower permeability to
Hydrocarbons and lower torque requirements than any previous gas cap design.
Leaking gas caps have proved to be one of the
greatest sources of evaporative emissions worldwide. According to the USEPA, up to
one-half of the total hydrocarbon emissions from a vehicle may occur from evaporative
In North America studies by General Motors and Sun
Oil have found that replacing lost or leaking gas caps can save up to 30 gallons of
gasoline a year per vehicle and reduce evaporative emissions by up to one-third.
Dick Shaw, President of RAM Products, and inventor
of the 0-Leak cap noted, "Since the early 1960's, nitrile rubber has been the primary
material used in the seals and gaskets of gas caps. Gas caps with nitrile rubber may begin
leaking within two years of the gas caps life." Mr. Shaw continued, "Materials
now available to manufacturer gas caps have improved dRAMatically since the early 1970's.
New fluoroelastomers incorporated into the RAM 0-Leak gas cap provide greater life
expectancy, durability and permeation rates. "
As part of its Low Emissions vehicle progRAMs (LEV
II and PZEV), the ARB has increased the evaporative emissions durability requirements
starting with the 2004 model vehicles from 10 years or 100,000 miles to 15 years and
150,000 miles. Replacing older style gas caps that depend on nitrile seals with new caps
made with fluorocarbons is one of the recommended strategies to meet ARB's new zero
evaporative system requirements.
Material defects are not the only contributor to
evaporative emissions. Mr. Shaw added: "Consumer misuse of the gas cap is also a
source of evaporative emissions. This occurs when consumers fail to tighten their gas caps
to the proper torque specifications allowing gasoline vapors in the gas tank to be vented
In the late 1960's the Consumer Product Safety
commission required that gas caps be designed with the familiar "turn until it
clicks" design. Many people with arthritis, or the elderly and the disabled, are
physically unable to tighten a gas cap to the required specification. The Arthritis
foundation claims that the gas cap is one of the ten most difficult products for arthritis
sufferers to use.
The RAM 0-Leak gas cap opens and closes with a
simple movement of the thumb and forefinger. It requires .4 Newton meters to close or
about 1/5 to 1/20 of the torque required to close current gas caps.
Replacing a leaking gas cap with the RAM 0-Leak gas
cap will result in an immediate reduction of vehicle emissions. Shaw added, "We are
very pleased to have received an ARB Executive Order for our replacement gas cap that
helps maintain the efficiency and reliability of a vehicle's evaporative emissions control
systems and is convenient and easy for the motorist to use."
RAM Products, Ltd. (www.ramprods.com) is a plastics design and engineering
company that develops, patents, and licenses gas caps and production processes to vehicle
OEM's, fuel system manufacturers, and small engine manufacturers. Headquarters are located
at 21000 Enterprise Dr., Brookfield, WI 53045.
Dick Shaw, President