Regular or Premium?

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WaterBomb

Two kids no brane
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#1
Ok, so I'm trying to figure out what the REAL truth is behind gasoline. I know all the advertisements say the premium fuel is better for your car, cleans your engine, etc, but I don't believe everything I see on TV. What is the REAL story behind it? Is it worth filling your tank with the premium over the regular? If so, why? Who here actually knows the truth?

Fact or Myth? Discuss.
 
#2
I believe it's just less watered down than regular. I just use regular cause I'm a cheapo and my job doesn't pay me enough for that premium stuff.
 
#3
the difference between regular and premium gas is its octane rating, the yellow number above your pump

when a particular type of gasoline has a higher octane rating, it means it requires a higher activation energy to ignite the gasoline and thusly more compression in the engine, allowing your engine to run more efficiently (although this arguably is more pronounced in vehicles that require a minimum high octane rating)

using a higher octane in a entry-level or generic car will reduce knock and increase performance but the change isn't noticeable if you have been using regular for an extended period of time, especially if your car has a minimum octane rating in the mid-eighties

personally the tradeoff between performance and price isn't worth it in my opinion if you have a non-performance or a car with an entry-level engine, but if your engine is better than most, then it could be worth it to prevent knock

don't see the point if you don't have an engine to utilize it though

wikipedia explains it a little more technically: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Octane_rating
you can find your car's minimum octane rating in your car's manual
 

WaterBomb

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#5
Well I drive a Pontiac Grand Prix GT. The Engine is a 3.8 liter V6, Supercharged. Would you consider that a typical engine or a performance engine?

This is a legitimate question because I don't really know where the line between "performance" and "standard" is drawn as far as engine block size and HP goes.
 
#6
IMO, anything above ~300 BHP is performance, however, the line is thinner than that, as it depends on the engines ability to utilise the extra octane in the fuel.
 
#8
Give it a shot and see if you notice any differences when you drive it. I tried it and noticed a subtle change in my Saab, but regular gas is fine for it so I just use that. I can't justify spending more for a slight improvement when essentially it does the same thing (A to B, you know how it is).

I don't know the GP's octane rating but if it says it can run fine on regular, you don't need to worry about using higher level gas for typical driving.
 

WaterBomb

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#9
What I'm really trying to figure out is if using premium gas over regular will do anything to affect the longevity of my car, reliability, and maintenance. I'm not concerned as much with performance, but if it saves me money in upkeep in the long run I would definitely continue to use it.
 
#10
What I'm really trying to figure out is if using premium gas over regular will do anything to affect the longevity of my car, reliability, and maintenance. I'm not concerned as much with performance, but if it saves me money in upkeep in the long run I would definitely continue to use it.
without going into horrible specifics, it's really not worth the cost of constantly doing premium for the miniscule amount of performance boost you get, especially since (west coast anyway) the difference is about twenty cents p/g

premium is really meant for cars who require a higher octane rating

check your manual and go with what is higher than your minimum
 

Bartman101

Banned deucer.
#11
Come to England then, where there's no such thing as gasoline, no regular or preminm crap, and no watered down fuel, just good ol' unleaded petrol and diesel.
 
#12
Come to England then, where there's no such thing as gasoline, no regular or preminm crap, and no watered down fuel, just good ol' unleaded petrol and diesel.
I always thought Petrol was the same as gasoline.


I mix it up with my car. If gas is anything less than 3$ for 9/10 of a gallon, I go with the premium, if it's more than 3$, which it is most of the time, I go with regular.
 
#20
I think we'll all agree that your post was pretty.....Average.
Actually it was a good post.

Premium gasoline with no ethanol, every man's dream. Anyway, premium is for nice cars with good engines, otherwise why bother? I have 140 horsepower, I sure as hell am never putting premium in this car.
 
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