Anyone who's ever filled up their tank at a self-serve gas station understands there are multiple fuel grades available. Many people simply choose whatever is cheapest, but that may not be what's best for your vehicle. The information below will help you understand which grade of fuel is right for your car.
In most cases, regular unleaded fuel is adequate. If you have a regular passenger sedan, pickup, or SUV, your owner's manual likely recommends you use lower octane fuels of 85 or 87. Octane is simply a measure of how much pressure the fuel can withstand before it ignites.
The higher the octane, the higher the pressure required to ignite the fuel, and the less likely unexpected ignitions will occur while the engine is operating. Unexpected ignitions often appear as engine knocking and can lead to damage.
Premium gas normally has an octane rating of 91 or 93, and it runs 20 to 30-cents more per gallon than regular unleaded. Most gas stations also offer mid-grade fuel with an octane rating—and price—that falls between the other two. If you are experiencing engine knocking, try filling up with mid-grade gas for a tankful or two to see if that stops it.
If it doesn't, adjust the fuel upward again to premium. That should prevent any pre-ignitions and knocking, but if it doesn't, you should have the engine looked at by a professional. Some high-performance vehicles simply run better on premium fuel, and the owner's manual will recommend you use it. Even many turbo-equipped versions of sedans recommend you fill them with premium.
Whatever type of fuel you need, you can find it at Tri-Mart BP in Tripoli, WI. They are family-owned and -operated and have served customers in and around Oneida county since 1992. They offer regular and premium unleaded gas, diesel fuel, and propane, and their attached convenience store sells snacks, beer, and hot food. They offer 24-hour pay-at-the-pump fuel service, or you can visit their website or call (715) 564-2440 for the store hours.