Petrol in a diesel car is a mistake that can be easily made, especially if the car is a dual-cab ute. This is due to the large filler neck inlet, which can take a nozzle for higher-flow diesel.
Older diesel engines and farm machinery powered by diesel engines can handle a small proportion of petrol mixed in with diesel. Still, newer diesel engines with common-rail fuel systems cannot tolerate even a small amount of petrol in their system as the tight tolerances of the fuel system can be damaged.
A diesel fuel pump is designed to work with diesel fuel and is very precise in its operation, relying on the lubricating properties of diesel fuel to keep it running smoothly. When gasoline is added to diesel fuel, the lubrication properties are reduced, allowing metal-to-metal contact to occur, damaging the fuel pump and creating metal particles that can damage other parts of the fuel system.
When too much fuel is ignited in a diesel engine at a higher compression ratio than normal, it can cause the engine to suffer serious damage. This is called pre-ignition, detonation, or misfire.
No matter what type of fuel you mistakenly put into the car, it will still run, but roughly. It will likely emit smoke from the exhaust. If you’re lucky enough to realise you’ve made a mistake before you drive off the petrol station, here are some helpful tips:
Don’t Start the Car
This will only spread any contaminated fuel around the engine. The best solution is to call NRMA roadside assistance and tow your car to a mechanic. They can empty the tank, fit new filters, and refill it with the correct fuel.
Don’t Drive It
Stop driving if you accidentally put petrol in a diesel car. Stop the car in a safe place and turn off the engine to avoid any potential damage. Doing so could save you thousands of dollars in repairs and time needed to get the vehicle back on the road.
Don’t Suck the Fuel Out
Never try and take fuel out of the tank by sucking it out. Getting all the fuel out this way is impossible and could be dangerous or damaging to the environment.
This Even Applies to Wrong Petrol Grades
Using the wrong type of gas in a car that only needs regular unleaded gas will cost more money at the pump, but it won’t negatively affect the vehicle. Some drivers suggest that putting a higher octane gas than needed occasionally will help the engine perform better or use less fuel, but this has yet to be proven. If you accidentally put the wrong type of fuel in your vehicle, it is not likely that your warranty or car insurance will cover the repairs that may be needed.
Always check the gas nozzle for the right fuel and quality before filling the tank. It could save you from additional expenses down the line.
If Not, Call Fuel Fixer Today
Accidentally put petrol in a diesel car? Don’t worry; Fuel Fixer has got you covered. We have mobile units across the UK ready to come to your aid. We’ll get to you quickly—usually within 46 minutes—and get your car running again. We’re the leading wrong fuel specialists, so make yourself safe and give us a call. We’ll get your car sorted while you wait. Call 0333-366-1081!