There could come a time when, in the haste to refuel your car and get somewhere fast, you could put the wrong fuel in your car. Some cars run on petrol, while others run on diesel, and some others run on electricity. Now, unless your car is a hybrid, it’s pretty much impossible to accidentally put diesel in a car powered by electricity, for example. However, with petrol and diesel engines, that becomes a much more realistic problem. Granted, both fuels have different pump nozzles at fuel stations. But sometimes mistakes happen, and you could put petrol in your diesel engine car by mistake.
When you realize what you have done, the most important thing to do is to immediately stop driving the ca. Park and turn off the engine to limit the damage that will occur, otherwise the car will use up the remainder of the fuel in the car tank and eventually shut down. Also, you will need to bring in a mechanic as soon as possible.
If you put diesel in a petrol engine, the mechanic needs to drain the tank, fuel lines, fuel rails and injectors completely. Usually, there is no permanent damage, but this kind of fix could be expensive, especially when you add the towing fees.
Now, this is relatively harmless compared to putting petrol in diesel engines. Diesel is both a fuel and a lubricant, which means that you could damage the fuel injector pump severely by adding the wrong fuel to the diesel engine. Also, diesel and petrol have different combustion properties. This means that petrol would detonate much earlier in a diesel engine. This results in knocks, which will require extensive changes to the engine.
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HOW TO AVOID PUTTING THE WRONG FUEL IN YOUR VEHICLE
Everyone makes mistakes. However, there are steps you can put in place to prevent this kind of error. For example,
- If you just bought a new car with a different fuel engine to your previous car, leave yourself reminders that this is a different type of engine.
- Try to keep all your attention on the task at hand when you get into a fuel station. Cut out all sorts of distractions.
- If you drive a diesel car and are worried about misfuelling, you could buy a device that fits into your filler neck to prevent you inserting the narrower petrol nozzle in your diesel tank.