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Discussion Starter #1
Assuming that the ethanol rating is the same, is there a reasonable difference between two top tier gasoline brands?

I know they have different additive, but I can't figure out if there is a substantial and reasonable difference between the two.

For example, Costco Top Tier gasoline vs. Chevron.
 

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Well many folks I know think Shell V-Power is the best. But that is just for the Premium gas.
I use Shell Premium... exclusively.
I will use Mobil if I have to, because I like Mobil One oil.

I hate BP just because they dumped the brand name of Amaco. Forcing all the stations to take up the BP name. that was the dumbest brand from well known to Who? I ever knew of.
Any other brand no way would i use them.

I used to like Union 76 when they still were in the area. But they pulled out years ago.
 

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Well many folks I know thing Shell V-Power is the best. But that is just for the Premium gas.
I use Shell Premium... exclusively.
I will use Mobil if I have to, because I like Mobil One oil.

I hate BP just because they dumped the brand name of Amaco. Forcing all the stantions to take up the BP name. that was the dumbest brand from well known to Who? I ever knew of.
Any other brand no way would i use them.

I used to like Union 76 when they still were in the area. But they pulled out years ago.
We have tons of 76 in my area. Shell are here and then. Valero and Chevron are a little bit more common.

So it's really coming down between Shell and Chevron. I've heard really good things about both.

But since you're using premium, I wonder if there's a substantive difference as well at 87 as well.

I wish there were studies or something similar done to definitely answer this question once and for all, lol.

I normally fill up 99% of the time at Costco (designated Top Tier status with five times the detergent required by the EPA), but the one time I filled a full tank at Chevron, I think I experienced a more smoother ride. But it might be confirmation bias, so I can't confirm for sure.
 

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I only have one choice: PEMEX.
If I could make a choice I'll buy at the gas station with the better price on premium gas
 

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IIRC what makes the top tier is they agree to certain standards and additive packages. I saw a comparison on youtube that showed dyno results where shell premium made more power than BP. Interestingly, one great brand that is not considered top tier is Sunoco which has a long performance pedigree.
 

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Chevron is the gold standard.

People seem to like Shell because of some kind of stupid marketing nonsense.
(if there really is a good reason to use Shell, please let me know)
 

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Chevron is the gold standard.
Rationale? Link?

Top tier fuel must meet certain guidelines for detergency etc. but beyond that, how would you be able to discern which was any better because of the proprietary nature of their formulations?
 

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I can't speak for other areas of the country, or even in Texas, but I used to know a fuel transporter (the guys that truck the fuel to the stations and I assume fill the tanks) here in the DFW area.

He said it's all the same, except for Chevron. He said the only stations that controlled or used "their own" was Chevron with the Techron additive. He said he'd haul the same gasoline from the same supplier to Joe's no name station, then continue on to Exxon, then to Shell, then to QT, Valero, some other no-name, back to Texaco, etc.

Like I say, that was DFW area. Not sure if other areas follow in the same manner.
 

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I can't speak for other areas of the country, or even in Texas, but I used to know a fuel transporter (the guys that truck the fuel to the stations and I assume fill the tanks) here in the DFW area.

He said it's all the same, except for Chevron. He said the only stations that controlled or used "their own" was Chevron with the Techron additive. He said he'd haul the same gasoline from the same supplier to Joe's no name station, then continue on to Exxon, then to Shell, then to QT, Valero, some other no-name, back to Texaco, etc.

Like I say, that was DFW area. Not sure if other areas follow in the same manner.
I actually heard that many years ago and I don't know if that is still the case. If true, wouldn't Shell have some serious problems with the Attorney General as they claim their 93 octane V-Power is exclusive?
 

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I actually heard that many years ago and I don't know if that is still the case. If true, wouldn't Shell have some serious problems with the Attorney General as they claim their 93 octane V-Power is exclusive?
Yeah, good point. Makes one wonder what's so "exclusive" about it if it's the same as fill in the blank gasoline.

Maybe their marketing department is excellent like the (who was it?) "smart" motor oil marketing campaign? Basically telling us their motor oil is "smart enough" to change viscosity.

Maybe "V-Power" is Shell's name for some additive that's in all gasoline, and that only Shell has named "V-Power" hence you can only get the additive named "V-Power" sold exclusively at Shell stations. Marketing, gotta love it.
 

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Yeah, good point. Makes one wonder what's so "exclusive" about it if it's the same as fill in the blank gasoline.

Maybe their marketing department is excellent like the (who was it?) "smart" motor oil marketing campaign? Basically telling us their motor oil is "smart enough" to change viscosity.

Maybe "V-Power" is Shell's name for some additive that's in all gasoline, and that only Shell has named "V-Power" hence you can only get the additive named "V-Power" sold exclusively at Shell stations. Marketing, gotta love it.
Perhaps the most telling part of this article:

"The American Petroleum Institute provided background comments about fuel additives and promised to provide an expert for an interview. The API spokesman never called back.

Finally, Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, an independent, nonprofit testing facility, also declined to comment on the question of gasoline quality."

Looks like I will need to follow the gas truck when it leaves my Shell station to see if it heads over to Bob's no name gas station.

http://www.edmunds.com/car-care/is-cheap-gas-bad-for-your-car.html

By the way, let's see if you are really "Too Old" Do you remember Fina's Pink Air and Pflash advertising campaigns?
I can see all the young guys hitting Google right now going , WTF is he talking about.
 

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Rationale? Link?

Top tier fuel must meet certain guidelines for detergency etc. but beyond that, how would you be able to discern which was any better because of the proprietary nature of their formulations?
Chevron was the first "serious" detergent gasoline with the introduction (close to 20 years ago) of its (now well established) Techron additive.
 

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Chevron was the first "serious" detergent gasoline with the introduction (close to 20 years ago) of its (now well established) Techron additive.
I don't know Kabigon, it just seems like marketing and spin figure into this more than actual efficacy. This test put Techron near the bottom of the list:

As a worst case sample of material which might be found in gasoline I used ordinary tar. The brown deposits we find coating carburators, and which collects in fuel injectors and on intake valves, are the highest boiling components in gasoline. They are tar-like materials which distilled along with the lighter gasoline. The best solvent I've ever seen for these was methylene chloride, but it's expensive and I'm sure it's being phased out to protect our ozone layer. In any case, if you used it on a modern car the chlorine freed during combustion would corrode the oxygen sensor. Amoco advertises a cleaner gasoline and I'm sure it's because they've reduced these tar-like compounds. All gas these days contains at least a little detergent of some sort to help keep these deposits from building up too much.

Dimethylformamide is listed in the literature as being a good engine cleaner and is "especially good at dissolving carbonaceous deposits". I haven't used this myself because it is a bit too toxic. Instead I used N-methyl pyrrolidone, which is also good.

For my tests, I tried to use a wide variety of products, well known and unknown, expensive and cheap, and also some pure solvents in order to represent a good cross section of products on the market. Note, carbon itself (such as soot and other thermally decomposed material) is not soluble in ANY solvent but solvents like dimethylformamide and N-methyl pyrrolidone do a good job of breaking up clumps and dispersing the fine particles to release the heavy tarry materials trapped within them. However, some of these solvents are too harsh to use freely in the fuel system. (Someone in one of these forums told me that when the auto industry looks for good cleaners, they mostly look for solvents that will not attack the plastic and rubber parts in the system.)

Most cleaners (the safer & slightly less effective ones) usually have common solvents in them like toluene, alcohol, acetone or methyl ethyl ketone, and naphtha. If you want to use these to clean your system, you can get more for your money by buying the pure solvents at a hardware store and mixing them yourself. I have never had a problem adding toluene, acetone, alcohol, or naphtha to my gas tank in quantities up to one quart per 16 gallons.

Most of the straight solvents I used are at least as flammable as gasoline so be careful if you use them. The alcohol used was pure, 100% isopropyl alcohol. This has no water in it, it is not the same as "rubbing alcohol".

These test results are as fairly and accurately done as I could manage with the equipment I had available, and the other data presented is also accurate to my knowledge. Your car may have different plastics in it than mine does so if you choose to make your own cleaner, do it at your own risk.

TEST RESULTS

RELATIVE EFFICIENCIES AT WHICH VARIOUS CLEANERS WILL DISSOLVE HIGH BOILING RESIDUES FROM GASOLINE AND CARBONACEOUS DEPOSITS FOUND IN USED MOTOR OIL, (10=BEST):

· 10 Gunk Gas Treatment
· 10 Toluene (a common ingredient)
· 9 Castrol Syntec Power System
· 8 Duralube Fuel System Cleaner
· 7 Gunk Fuel Injector Cleaner
· 6 Redline SI-1
· 5 Gunk Air Intake Cleaner
· 4 Naphtha (a common ingredient)
· 4 STP Fuel System Cleaner
· 4 Seafoam Motor Tuneup
· 4 Trak Fuel Injector Cleaner
· 4 STP Intake Valve Cleaner
· 4 CD-2 Emission Cure
· 4 Prolong Fuel System Treatment
· 3 CD-2 Fuel Injector Cleaner
· 3 Techron Concentrate


From the article I linked in my previous post,

"Randy Stephens, chief engineer for Toyota's Avalon, isn't wholly convinced by the claims of engine protection afforded by higher-priced gas. He says fuel experts at his company study the effects of different brands of gas on the Toyota engines. Automotive engineers disassemble engines after 10,000 miles of running them on different brands of gas to see if there is a difference.

Honestly, in the 10 years I've been in charge of Avalon, I've never seen one come back with any sort of deposit issue," Stephens says."

Add to that the fact that the American Petroleum Institute and Southwest Research Institute won't even go on record about the issue, leads me to believe that top tier gas with the required detergency might just be sufficient.

http://www.edmunds.com/car-care/is-cheap-gas-bad-for-your-car.html
 

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The most important thing we can all agree...

Is that stale gas is no good!!!

Some pumps, it could be Shell (top tier fuel) or a no name as long as you have no fuel rotation (ex: remote location) it could be an issue.

My motorcycle require premium gas (93+) in some remote station premium fuel is less used than in cities. Had one time bad premium fuel!
 

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I don't know Kabigon, it just seems like marketing and spin figure into this more than actual efficacy.
I don't know...

Why do so many auto manufacturers recommend Top Tier gasoline if it's just a marketing gimmick?
Why does BMW relabel Techron and sell it as "BMW Fuel System Cleaner"?
Why does a Porsche bulletin entitled "Cleaning of Fuel Injectors" specify "Techron"?

I've had great long term results with Chevron gasoline (I've never used any kind of additive).
That's the bottom line.
 

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Chevron>Shell>Exxon>>>whoever else imo

My truck seems to be sensitive to certain fuels, and this is just what I've come by through experience. I also heard that Ford goes out of their way to bring in Chevron gas to be used for it's prototypes and testing. I dont remember where I heard that or if it's true, but everyone loves it anyway. Its too bad Chevron got replaced by Marathon down here.
 

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Costco actually puts the detergents in the fuel at the station.

Probably so they can buy the fuel from any distributor.....................


Side note: My parents neighbor drives the tankers, and he says everybody uses the same base when they put it in the truck. The difference being the additive packages depending on where that load is going

and

the base WILL be different between the refineries.....

So there are underlying quality differences depending on the location of where the tanker is filled.........
 

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I don't know...

Why do so many auto manufacturers recommend Top Tier gasoline if it's just a marketing gimmick?
Why does BMW relabel Techron and sell it as "BMW Fuel System Cleaner"?
Why does a Porsche bulletin entitled "Cleaning of Fuel Injectors" specify "Techron"?

I've had great long term results with Chevron gasoline (I've never used any kind of additive).
That's the bottom line.
I'm not an expert in petroleum and its related fields, but Techron isn't so much of a raw cleaner as it is a preventative product. For the most part, its "active ingredient" (polyether amine) functions as a demulsifier and as a protectant, helping to prevent deposits from occurring. I didn't look too much into what the other components are but I would bet that it contains some good solvents as well which initially break apart the gunk and allow the PEE to carry it away.

Wavsine has a point, and so do you. It's a genuine product that can provide long term benefits but is one which does not cover all aspects of the issue being discussed.
 

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I don't know...

Why do so many auto manufacturers recommend Top Tier gasoline if it's just a marketing gimmick?
No, I didn't say top tier fuel was a marketing gimmick. Top tier designation means you are buying fuel that has adequate detergent to meet tier 2 emission standards etc.

There are many retailers that sell top tier fuel sans marketing speak such as Quik Trip who is consistently lower on price than Shell, Chevron etc.

To be clear, everybody should be running top tier fuel in their car but people also need to remember that top tier fuel, whether generic or name brand, has its limitations in a direct injected engine such as the 2.0 Duratec. The detergent fuel never washes over the intake valves in these engines since the injectors are inside the combustion chamber so the detergent does nothing to keep your intake valves clean. It should help keep your injectors clean and hopefully deter combustion chamber deposits.
 

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Blah blah blah. I don't believe techron does anything more than those waste of money additives you can get and any walmart or auto parts store.

I use Sonoco simply for their rewards card. I can buy some energy drink that I really dont like or need and save 8 cents per gallon. Forget the fact i spent 2 bucks on something I wouldn't have otherwise bought. All that matters is I saved 8 cents a gallon.
 
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