Oops! I put in the Wrong Octane of Gas…

Posted January 21, 2016

You pull up to the gas station, swipe a credit card, lift the handle and start pumping gas… it’s so routine, that you don’t have to think much about filling the gas tank of your vehicle. But oops! When you look up and notice that you’re filling the tank with the wrong octane… what does that mean? Is it really so bad?

Using the wrong octane of gas can cause serious engine problems - learn more from the experts at D's Auto Repair in Holland MIThat depends. Did you go too high or two low?

If you fill your tank with an octane of gas higher than the recommended octane, you’re in the clear. You probably spent a few extra pennies at the pump, but your vehicle will be able to run just fine.

If you fill your gas tank with octane lower than recommended, then you should be very careful.

The octane rating corresponds with the way the gasoline is burned in your engine. The number represents the amount of pressure, or compression in your engine, the fuel can withstand before it will ignite.

In your engine, your vehicle injects fuel, compresses it, and uses a spark plug to ignite the fuel. The energy produced in the combustion is what powers your vehicle.

If the gasoline octane is too low, the fuel may spontaneously burn before it should. Instead of waiting for the spark from the spark plug, the fuel may ignite on its own during compression. You may notice a knocking sound in the engine, called “pinging.”

This early ignition of fuel can cause serious engine damage. You’ll save a few dollars at the gas pump, but spend hundreds more on engine repair.

As soon as you notice the mistake, stop filling your tank and call our team at 616.796.9929 – we’ll help you get back to running smoothly and avoid serious engine damage. Each time you fill up your tank, use the recommended gas octane!

Categories: Car Repair


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