A Tale of Three Petrols: Diesel, Premium and Regular

It might be time to reconsider some common ideas about premium vs. regular fuel. Most of the time, all you need is standard gasoline, according to our team of auto technicians at Christian Brothers in Hutto, TX.

Many of our customers assume that using premium gasoline will mean a longer-lasting engine, and they share the incorrect ideas with anyone who will listen about premium gasoline having better detergents than regular gasoline. It’s a false idea spread by the oil industry. Look at the owner’s manual. If premium is ever going to be helpful, it will say so. If the requirement isn’t there, avoid premium and save money.

When automobile engines aren’t created for premium fuel, they never have a use for the higher-octane fuel. It has to do with how the fuel is ignited. Premium gasoline ignites at a higher temperature, so it can withstand more compression before reigniting. Pricier fuel also has less heptanes, and that also helps with preventing the reignition at low temps. Even the government regulators agree – there’s no reason for it in the average tank.

Even if the owner’s manual does call for premium gas, chances are you don’t always need it. If your car isn’t more than 10 years old, that’s particularly the case because those engines are likely to have technology that adjusts to different octanes. With engines that are designed for premium fuel, the lower ignition rate can mean better performance. The pricey fuel also prevents pinging or knocking sounds. But the difference is usually slight, and the cost difference is pretty big. If your engine preignites fuel with normal use, it’s a different tale. For these vehicles, do a little more research or speak with our ACE-certified technicians about using the right fuel.

Do I Always Need Gas vs. Diesel?

Gasoline and diesel don’t play well together. You could stall the engine and need to be towed. You will have to pay for a system flush. Diesel is thick and oily compared to unleaded, and diesel vs. gas engines are different in important ways. These don’t have spark plugs. Instead, the fuel is ignited by the heat of compressed air, which is compressed before the fuel is injected right in the chamber. With gasoline, fuel and air are combined first and then the spark plugs ignite the mixture.

Get in Touch with Christian Brothers

If you have concerns about how to fill your gas tank or if you’re having any issues at all with your fuel system, give our trusted technicians in Hutto, TX a call. We do maintenance, pre-pruchase checks and repairs.