Today’s petrol pumps can be confusing with its array of colors, alphanumeric symbols, and names. Gasoline can come in four or more varieties and this doesn’t account for diesel. Mix them up and the result may be a ruined engine, corroded fuel lines or if you are very lucky, no damage at all.
What happens if you put gasoline in a diesel engine?
If you have noticed that you have filled your diesel car with gasoline before you start the engine you will need to clean the whole system. This means you need to drain the fuel tank and refill with the correct diesel fuel. So if you have realized that you’ve put gasoline into your diesel car, do not drive it or your engine may suffer some serious damage. You will then need to tow it to a professional dealership or mechanic that can clean the whole system properly. If you notice that you have put gas in your diesel car after you have started the engine, then your injectors, injection pump and the engine will probably completely fail.
The petroleum refining process results in products that have much higher boiling points. Gasoline usually boils somewhere between 110 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit, while the diesel boils around 550 to 650 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the EAMA (European Automobile Manufacturers Association).
Additionally, both diesel and gas engines mix the fuel with air and then compress this mixture with a piston as it moves toward the top of the engine’s cylinder. Diesel engines do not have anything to ignite the fuel and rely completely on compression, unlike gasoline engines which use spark plugs to ignite it. Gasoline engines have a compression ratio of 10:1 and diesel engines have a ratio around 20:1. This means that the early ignition of the gasoline will result in unexpected and increased pressure in the cylinders, break the pistons, blow the head off the engine and bend the connecting rods. This is a complete failure of the engine.
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What happens when you put diesel in a gasoline engine?
Putting diesel in a gasoline engine is not as harmful as the previous possible situation. A couple of liters of diesel can make the gasoline car run poorly and make it smoke like crazy. If a car is constantly fed with only diesel it will quickly stop working altogether. As we mentioned previously, gasoline engines have a much lower compression ratio compared to diesel engines. This means that igniting the diesel is simply impossible even with the help of a spark plug. The problem with putting diesel in a gasoline engine is that it doesn’t deplete. It will stay in the fuel pump, fuel filter, injectors and will clog them up after some time. This is why you need to get your vehicles towed to a professional mechanic that will clean your fuel system thoroughly.
According to mostpicker.com, if you want to save your car from any damage after you have put in the wrong fuel, remember these steps.
- Stop adding the wrong fuel the moment you notice
- Do not start the car at all
- Disconnect the battery
- Have the car towed
- Ask for professional help to empty your gas tank.