Random (halloranelder) wrote,

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A waste of money that proved to not be a waste!

Some time ago (over a year ago, I think) I switched from filling Jeff (my car) up with regular unleaded to the premium unleaded (in particular Shell Optimax).

My reasoning behind this was that Jeff was getting old, and I hadn't really been treating him as well as I should. The premium unleaded was supposed to be much better for the car, so I thought it might be a good idea. At an extra 8.8c per litre extra, it wasn't exactly cheap, so there was always this little voice in the back of my head telling me I was wasting money. Considering some of the ways I've wasted money in the past, there was always the possibility that this was true.

I went to a New Years Eve party at Phil's place. Phil lives on a rather steep hill, and Jeff was low on fuel when I got there. Nothing major, but enough so that the low fuel warning light had only just lit up.

I wasn't really concerned with this, until I offered to give some people a lift home. I got in the car, turned the key, and nothing happened. Bugger.

The problem with Jeff is that the low fuel indicator is in the front of the fuel tank, and the actual fuel intake is in the back of the fuel tank. This means that if I am low on fuel and parked on a hill facing downhill (like I was) all the fuel is at the front of the tank which results in the fuel indicator thinking there is plenty of fuel, but no fuel actually getting to the engine.

We got the guys to push Jeff so he was facing up the hill instead of down, and he started fine. I gave the people a lift, and, since I was intending to go back to the party, went to find the nearest petrol station I could find that was open after midnight on New Years Day. It was a BP, so I filled up with regular, went and picked the people back up again, and went back to the party.

I refilled again with Shell Optimax again last Friday, the 28th of January. In the four week period between Jeff suffered. He had absolutly no guts at all. I would put my foot down to accelerate, and he would think about it and get back to me.

Also, his fuel economy suffered. Usually he would get between 375 and 400km before the fuel warning light would come on, and I could usually get another 20 to 30 km before I absolutely had to fill up.

I got to 360 this time and was having trouble going around corners because the fuel was so low it was not reaching the fuel intake on some corners.

I fueled up again with Shell Optimax, and I could notice the difference straight away. He's now running a lot smoother, and with a lot more power.

It's nice when I discover I was doing the right thing after all.

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