What You Need To Know About Gas Octane Levels

A car octane level is usually seen as the ability of the car to withstand shock that can lead to detonation. The higher the octane level, the higher the level of resistant to detonation. It’s important to note that the octane need of a car largely depends on operating condition, mechanical considerations, and compression ratio. For example, a car used constantly on a highway will require a higher octane level than one that runs only on the street. This is why race cars are mostly in need of high car octane levels.

So what’s the average octane level in most cars?

The most ideal octane rating for most cars is generally octane 87. But this level might be lesser or higher depending on the mechanical considerations of the vehicle. This is why it’s important to check your car’s manual to find out the actual level for your car. Some vehicles are designed to have high octane levels, especially those manufactured with electronic controls and high compression engines.

To prevent detonation or knocking, it’s always important to check your car’s octane level and keep it at a higher level than the recommended level. Most car manufactures require users to maintain regular octane levels. But some vehicles like luxury cars and older cars may require premium or mid-range gasoline. Most sports cars for races are in more need of higher octane levels than an average speed car.

Why is it necessary to know your car’s octane level?

It’s always important to check your car’s octane level because a lower level can lead to engine knock, resulting to damage of the engine when the knock is severe.

How has octane ratings of cars improve?

These days, petrol contains hycrocarbons (primarily olefins, naphthenes, and paraffins) produced in a reformer or catalytic cracker. Additives are added to the petrol to educe corrosion, improve combustion, and minimize carbon buildup in the engine. The last is a measure taken to improve the octane levels in most cars. Ethanol is another addictive primarily added to also increase octane ratings.

Which other factors can influence a car’s octane levels?

There are other factors that can influence the octane ratings of your car. Heavy loading or rapid acceleration can increase the octane requirements of your car. Also, your car’s octane level increases if the spark timing in your engine increases. Drier air raises the octane level while high altitude lowers it. It’s also important to know that your car will need a higher octane rating when the temperature of the engine is high. These are some of the factors that may likely influence the octane requirements in your car.

How to test your car’s octane ratings

There are two testing methods used to establish octane levels in gasoline powered vehicles: the research method and the motor method. The first method tests the levels on a running engine while the second method tests when the engine is under load. These two ratings are gathered and displayed on the pump for you to see.

Although it is advisable that your vehicle should use higher octane levels than it’s recommended, there is no benefit in keeping the level much higher than is needed. It will only add to your cost as gasoline consumption will be increased. It’s therefore important to find out what the desired level will be to keep your car safe and reduce expenses. Overall, your car works with the proper functioning of different mechanical parts. The required octane levels in your car should be taken seriously as other important areas. This will help you keep your car at an optimum level of performance while preventing costly damages.

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