Why You Should Be Using Premium Fuels
Premium fuels can be found at every petrol station in Australia, but what’s so ‘premium’ about them and what is the benefit of using them?
To get there, firstly let’s explain the fundamentals of fuel as there is a variety of types across the country, available in both unleaded petrol and diesel.
At most petrol stations you’ll find at least three choices for unleaded fuel which are sometimes labelled differently depending on the brand. But, no matter what they’re called, they are essentially the same.
The most affordable is generally called Regular Unleaded and has a Research Octane Number of 91RON.
An E10 Unleaded increases the octane rating to 94RON, as it is mixed with between 9- 10 percent ethanol. Ethanol can be produced from organic matter such as sugar cane, which makes it a sustainable fuel source but ethanol has a lower energy content which means, consequently, it doesn’t improve fuel consumption.
There is a 95RON octane rating Unleaded, while Premium Unleaded increases the octane to 98RON and it usually includes additives that can ‘clean’ internal parts of the engine to improve fuel consumption and long-term reliability.
So, what is RON and why is a higher number better?
Keeping things simple, RON is the tolerance of a fuel to be compressed prior to ignition without pre-igniting.
The more a fuel can be compressed before combustion, the greater the power an engine can create.
Currently in Australia, higher RON fuels have higher energy components blended into the fuel which means better performance and fuel economy. This is why so many car enthusiasts choose to fill up with premium fuels, ensuring they get the best out of their cars.
Most high-performance cars, and almost all high-tech European vehicles, require a minimum of 95RON Unleaded to produce the power they have been tuned for.
Premium fuels aren’t just about RON numbers
Have you ever thought about cleaning your car’s engine? Probably not. But like any machine with moving parts, dirt can cause serious issues.
An engine, being a complex array of moving parts that create high pressures and high heat, can be even more prone to dirt damage, with dirt deposits effectively being baked on to engine parts.
Over time this can cause drops in performance, increase fuel consumption and can even lead to higher maintenance costs by reducing the time between servicing through extra wear and tear.
Fuels, like the BP Ultimate range, have formulated cleaning additives in them to help remove the build-up of deposits on inlet valves and fuel injectors, and protect your engine from future dirt deposits building up.
Rachel Johnston, Regional Technology Manager at BP, believes keeping your engine clean is an essential element of car care.
“A clean engine is fundamental to maintaining optimum engine operation and keeping it working as the manufacturer intended,” she said.
Johnston also explains that diesel and unleaded engines suffer from the same issue.
“Both diesel and petrol engines suffer loss of performance due to dirt, however the critical components are different due to the different engine types,” she adds.
"Critical components for petrol engines are inlet valves and fuel injectors, whereas for diesel engines it is primarily the fuel injectors. Diesel injectors suffer nozzle coking and internal diesel injector deposit formation.
“A build-up of dirt on these components will impact the optimal performance of the engine.”
With engine performance a significant motivator behind many car buying choices, engine cleaning is clearly something to focus on when considering what premium fuel is right for you.
BP claims that its Ultimate fuels range can bust dirt from unleaded and diesel engines in just two tanks – based on a vehicle range of 650km per tank for petrol and 850km per tank for diesel.
Johnston believes it’s the effort put into creating this unique cleaning formula that separates BP Ultimate from its premium fuel competition.
“BP Ultimate is BP’s most advanced fuel and its patented formulae contains powerful cleaning agents,” she said.
“BP has spent more than 50,000 hours testing engines and vehicles, covering the equivalent of more than 1.6 million kilometres, perfecting the unique blend of special ingredients that go into our Ultimate fuels and proving the above benefits.”
This rigorous testing has led to a premium fuel with unique cleaning abilities that provide great benefits for your engine, claims Johnston.
“BP Ultimate can provide protection to injectors, prolonging service intervals and potentially help prevent breakdowns.
“The real benefit [of BP Ultimate] comes in keeping these components clean and operating as they should. This means your engine’s performance will remain as close to how the manufacturer intended as possible!” She said.
Consider filling up with BP Ultimate
If you care about your engine’s performance, keeping it clean and potentially running smoother for longer, BP Ultimate may be the right fuel choice for you.