When petrol prices spike, drivers rush to reduce the cost of fuel. One way of saving a few cents per litre is to stop pumping premium petrol and switch to regular grade. However, how do you know if the switch is safe or it will damage your BMW’s engine? Specialists at Big Motoring World offer some advice on the matter.
According to Big Motoring World Canterbury specialists, it is important for you to know whether the car requires the premium petrol or if its use is just recommendedfor peak performance. In modern vehicles, advances in engine technology mean that even if the owner’s manual recommends premium petrol, your BMW will usually run on regular without problems and will not damage the engine at all. While the car’s acceleration may be a half-second slower from zero to 100 KPH, for example, the average driver will most likely not notice this drop-off.
Drivers used to buy a tank-full of premium petrol every so often to clean their engine. In the past, premium petrol had more additives and detergents that stopped carbon deposits. But Big Motoring World specialists say that, as a result of government regulations targeted at reducing emissions, all grades of petrol—including those you buy at independent, low-priced stations—have enough additives that protect engines and reduce pollution.
Modern (Smart) Engines Protect Themselves
If you are still unsure about switching to a lower-octane fuel, here’s a deeper explanation from Big Motoring World Snodland specialists of why the change is not likely to hurt your BMW.
To begin with, premium petrol is more expensive because it contains a higher octane percentage. “What’s the big deal?” you ask. When vaporized, petrol mixes with air, filling the combustion chamber and attains condensation via the rising pistons. This makes the air-petrol mixture grow hot and ignitable by spark plug fires, therefore pushing the piston back. Higher-octane petrol is compressible to a higher degree without self-igniting. That is why premium petrol is ideal for high-performance engines.
Big Motoring World specialists explain that, in days gone, engines could not adjust to fuels with varying octane rating. Therefore, if you use the wrong fuel, the engine would “ping” or knock audibly because petrol exploded prematurely. Internal engine parts would, as a result of this knocking, get damaged over time.
In contrast, modern BMW engine control systems can compensate for low octane by monitoring knock activity and adjusting ignition advance to prevent knocking. This state-of-the-art technology effectively tunes the BMW engine on the fly and gives you flexibility in the grades of fuel that you can safely use.
Big Motoring World Prestige specialists assert that, compared to premium petrol, lower-octane fuels do not allow the engine to run as much ignition advance during situations that require rapid acceleration. More ignition advance allows the engine to create more power, and accelerate faster, in these situations. Since the engine does not create as much power with lower-octane fuels, this leads to slower acceleration in BMWs that is why there is recommendation for premium petrol.If you accelerate moderately, the power loss is barely noticeable, whether you use premium or regular petrol.