Save Money and Stop Buying Premium Gas

Modern Engines Make Allowances for Lower Octane


When the price of gasoline spikes, drivers scramble to reduce fuel costs. A quick way to save at least 20 cents per gallon (often as much as $4 per fill-up) is to stop pumping premium gas and switch to regular grade. But how will you know if the switch is safe or if it will damage the engine in your car? The key for drivers is to know whether premium gasoline is merely recommended or if it's required. In today's automobiles, advances in engine technology mean that even if the owner's manual recommends premium gasoline, the car will typically run

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By famof3kids
on 03/10/11
9:33 AM PST

Interesting Ford/GM/Chrysler have almost no cars that 'require' premium.

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By ianw33
on 03/25/11
9:05 AM PST

If you take the average difference of 20 cents between regular and premium, then multiply it by the average gallon size of a tank (15 gallons).... you would only be saving $3 per fill up by using regular. Not really worth it. You can save more by just driving smarter, or less. Fuel your car with what it was designed to be fueled with.

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By kalos
on 04/05/11
12:38 AM PST

This article didn't discuss the simple expedient of using mid-grade gas. In many gas stations, the difference between regular and premium exceeds 30 cents. At least half of this can be recovered by using mid-grade or blending. Yes, I'll keep the $1.50 per tank difference. Engine performance and mileage probably doesn't suffer at all.

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By rdaex1
on 04/14/11
7:54 AM PST

Lets try to focus on more fuel savings ideas that may ruin your car! 1) Drive 50 in the fast lane, slow and steady saves fuel!! Just dont get run over! 2) Take corners as fast as possible to minimize the need for acceleration 3) Coast through red lights, eliminating more acceleration Seriously edmunds.. youre better than this

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By guillermoii
on 04/14/11
8:05 AM PST

Why was Suzuki not on either list? And the simple Honda Civic 4 cyl REQUIRES premium? I question your list. Using regular gas just won't give you the added octane to give you the boost the car was designed to have. REQUIRED is a market ploy.

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By centurion3
on 04/14/11
12:22 PM PST

Great article. With my 2010 Mini Cooper S, I was wondering about the grade of fuel. Now I know. Thanks.John K.

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By Fiifi
on 04/15/11
10:05 AM PST

What the hell, so I click on the link to see the chick and she's no where to be found. I see what you did there, Edmunds! Not funny, I tell ya, not funny at all!

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By kunk2
on 03/22/12
10:06 AM PST

E-85 Good Idea, But it's price so what you save in money you lose in miles per gallon. So why use it. E`85 Why does it go up the same as gas? Only 15% of it is gas. If it was worth it to use people would use it. When people start using it, more work for people. The president said we have to create our own energy. Well isn't E-85 new energy. Why does it cost so much. (GREED) again.I e-mailed the E-85 people last year and wrote back that it's the retailers who set the price not them. All I know if the price was half what gas is MILLIONS of people who have flex fuel cars and trucks would be using it. After all it's 105 octane so there is no loss of power. The government needs to step in so they STOP killing us while new ways are developed.

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By igilson
on 06/01/12
4:12 PM PST

Saving money IS NOT CORRECT!! and E-85 is a waste of money. My car gets 8% better gas mileage on premium versus mid grade and 12% better than low grade. Gas cost $4.15 low grade and $4.35 premium in S.Cal 4.15 times 1.12 is 4.65. So I use premium AND SAVE MONEY, !!!! I save $4.80 a tank and the car runs better. E-85 gets 30% less mpg than gasoline. The price of E-85 (where you can buy it) is $4.65. The gas equivalent price is over $6.00 a gallon. The futures price of ethanol is available in most newspapers. That is what drive the price of E-85

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By alhajikdabo
on 08/09/12
11:21 PM PST

The average national retail price of premium self-serve gasoline currently is topping $3.78 a gallon. Fuel costs are leaping by nearly 40 cents a month. And drivers who are pumping premium are undoubtedly asking themselves if they can safely switch to regular, which is about 20 cents a gallon cheaper..... engine 2.5

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