With the exorbitant cost of gas nowadays, is it really worth it filling our gas tanks with premium gas? A lot of us have the notion that premium gas is better for engines than regular. It is however a fact, that octane grades are not a good representation of what’s good, better and best choice, because they simply measure the resistance of fuel to knocking or pinging ( the condition in which gas burns out of control in the engine’s combustion chambers) which will eventually damage the engine.
High octane gas can ward off knocking better than lower octanes. However, most engines are really made to take regular gas, which normally has octane rating of 87. Vehicles or engines requiring premium gas are normally those powerful ones and luxury vehicles. Reason being they use a high compression ratio, making them more susceptible to knocking thus, it makes sense to fill them up with high octane gas of 91 and higher.
The use of premium gas on vehicles or engines made to run on regular will not improve performance. Likewise, some engines made to use high octane gas can run on regular gas without problems. The explanation to that is that, because the engine’s knock sensor system recognizes the presence of uncontrolled burning in the chambers, thus, the engine’s control system delays the progression of engine timing and eventually eliminates knocking but will slightly reduce the power. Bottom line is, if you are willing to sacrifice and give up some performance, such engines can definitely run on less expensive regular gasoline. It pays to check out your owner’s manual though, just to be sure.
Clearly, it’s still your choice.