6 Common Fuel Myths Debunked

6 Common Fuel Myths Debunked

21st Apr 2023

 E10 fuel pump nozzle, Gas station fuel options, Fuel dispenser nozzles

How often do you fill up your vehicle at the pump? If your vehicle has an internal combustion engine (ICE) -- or even a hybrid engine -- you'll have to fill it up. While electric vehicles are becoming more common, they still pale in comparison to the total number of ICE vehicles on the road. There are several fuel myths you shouldn't believe, however, when filling up your vehicle at the pump.

#1) You Should Wait Until Your Tank Is Empty

Some drivers assume that it's best to wait until their vehicle's tank is empty before filling it up at the pump. In reality, this can harm your vehicle's fuel system by allowing sediment to accumulate in the bottom of your tank.

#2) Rolling Down the Windows Improves Fuel Economy

Think rolling down the windows will improve your vehicle's fuel economy? Think again. Studies have shown that it actually has the opposite effect. When you roll down the windows, your vehicle will be exposed to greater wind resistance. Your vehicle will then have to burn more fuel to accommodate for this wind resistance, resulting in poorer fuel economy.

#3) Premium Fuel Is Better Than Regular

One of the most common fuel myths is that premium fuel is better than regular fuel. Most gas stations offer several varieties of fuel: regular, mid and premium. Many drivers believe that premium fuel is better than regular fuel and will provide better performance, but this isn't always the case. Premium fuel has a higher octane rating, which is only necessary for certain types of engines. If your car doesn't require premium fuel, it will likely be a waste of money.

#4) Manual Transmissions Have Better Fuel Economy

Another common myth is that manual transmissions have better fuel economy. In the past, this was largely true. Manual transmissions did, in fact, get better mileage. But automakers have come a long way at optimizing automatic transmissions in recent years. There's no little or no difference regarding the fuel economy of manual transmissions versus automatic transmissions.

#5) Cruise Control Improves Fuel Economy

Using your vehicle's cruise control won't save you money at the pump. Cruise control, of course, is a feature that eliminates the need for pressing the gas pedal. While on the highway, you can activate your vehicle's cruise control to maintain a constant speed. While convenient, though, cruise control won't improve your vehicle's fuel economy.

#6) Premium Fuel Will Clean Your Engine

While it has a higher octane rating, premium fuel won't clean your vehicle's engine. Some drivers believe that using premium fuel will help clean their engine, but this is not true. Fuel injectors and other fuel- and engine-related components can become dirty over time, but you can't rely on premium fuel to clean them.