With so many varieties of fuel available for your vehicle to use, you might be wondering which is the best. Here is a short primer as to how you go about it. While you might assume that getting the right fuel is as simple as going to the station, filling up your tank, and walking away, the many different types of choices you have might confuse you. However, in reality, it is pretty simple to figure out what sort of fuel you need!
The first thing you will have to know is whether your car uses diesel or petrol. Cars that run on petrol are much more prevalent then those that run on diesel. However, diesel costs less than petrol, and quite often, it provides the user with more mileage! This makes diesel more economic, and you might be wondering if you can use diesel in a petrol car, or vice versa. This is however not something you should do as each car can run on one or the other and this is predefined. You can get this information from the car’s instruction manual, the interior of your fuel cap, or simply searching online about the make and model of your vehicle.
The next point to be noted is the sort of fuel which is ideal for you to use. For those of you who have a diesel running automobile, there is not really an issue as predominantly, only one type of diesel variety is sold.
However, in the case of petrol, you usually can find 3 choices for you to use. These are regular petrol, midrange petrol, and premium petrol. All three of these can of course be used to run your petrol based vehicle. However, the way your vehicle performs, and the level of efficiency that it shows will be different depending on the type of car you have, as well as the type of fuel your vehicle is recommended to use.
There is something called an Octane rating when it comes to petrol. Usually, you have three choices- 87, 89 and 91 Octane fuel. The octane value is basically the level of stability which a fuel possesses. The higher an octane value the fuel has, the less likely it is to ping (also called predetonate) and damage your vehicle’s engine.
For an engine with a higher compression ratio, you will need a higher octane fuel to make sure that the air fuel mixture does not predetonate. However, higher octane values don’t translate to better performance. A vehicle with a high performance engine usually has a high compression ratio as well, and thus needs a high octane fuel to prevent engine damage. In low performance engines, using a higher grade of octane will not make much of a difference to performance and is just a waste of money as the octane rating an engine needs depends more on the design of the engine than its performance.
The best way to get maximum mileage and performance, as well as reduce emissions is to use the octane fuel recommended for your car, rather than the highest available. Just refer to the vehicle’s manual. In general, most economy cars run on 87 octane as someone who does buy that sort of car would prefer cheaper fuel, while higher end vehicles need 91 octane.
If your vehicle has also been altered to accommodate a turbocharger, super charger, or another method of forced induction for more power, you should use higher octane fuels. Also, if your vehicle has travelled a certain distance, like a hundred thousand miles, switch to a higher octane value to prevent predetonation.