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View Poll Results: All else being equal, does fuel brand affect FE?
Yes, significantly 17 21.79%
Yes, but not by a significant amount 27 34.62%
No, there's no significant impact 34 43.59%
Voters: 78. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-06-2012, 02:50 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Pump may matter more than brand

The mixing pumps may be a factor, especially at a station that is selling a lower grade than the one you are buying. The idea is that a bit of that moonshine the last guy was pumping might make it into your ultra dinosaur blood and effect your mileage slightly. If you're buying premium, it's probably better to do it at a station that has separate hoses, if you are buying moonshine, it's probably better to use the fancy electronic pump in the fancy neighborhood.

If driving a mile out of the way for a penny in price costs more, I imagine it'd be the same for the marginal gains between brands.

Personally I avoid Freedom stations because of the Koch brothers, BP for the gulf spill and the revolutionary war, and Exxon for the Valdez. Hopefully I'll be off gas by the time everyone has appealed to my irrationality.

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Old 11-06-2012, 03:28 PM   #22 (permalink)
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When I lived in Alaska, there was only one (Tesoro) refinery in the whole state. Obviously, with Alaska's isolation and the pipeline providing cheap crude, it made no economic sense to ship crude or refined oil up to Alaska. All our gas came from the Tesoro refinery, with the different oil companies adding their different additives. I saw the same gasoline tanker drive from one brand's gas station to another brand's, so they don't all use different additives.
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Old 11-06-2012, 04:21 PM   #23 (permalink)
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When I was 16 I drove a Chevy Sprint (think Geo Metro). It was a great car! There were only two different types of gas close at hand, Kwik Trip and Holiday. The Sprint really hated Kwik Trip gas! It would bog down and have trouble starting. This happened enough times that I figured things out and just filled up at the Holiday. No other car that I have had has cared to that extent, and I haven't paid enough attention to brand to make a comparison.
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Old 11-06-2012, 04:22 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Assuming you're not getting any condensation from the tanks, 87 octane is 87 octane. However, I observe a ~5% mpg increase when using fuel without ethanol substituted for gasoline. Makes sense given ethanol has less energy content. Detergent additives are the difference between brands. Places like 7-11 and Costco buy from whoever will supply the cheapest stuff.
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:13 PM   #25 (permalink)
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My uncle drove a gasoline tanker truck. He filled his truck at the depot and then made his rounds. Regardless of the brand on the sign at the station, the gasoline was the same. Gas is gas.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:20 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I am not meaning to crap on your thread, but I refuse to answer this question. Firstly, it is confusingly worded so we can see by the replies that people are thinking you're asking something you're not. Secondly, even without people misunderstanding, this is a "do you believe" sort of question. People believe a lot of stuff that's just down right wrong, don't you agree?

I think only a very small percentage of people are even close to qualified to perform such testing, let alone make such conclusions based on the data. For any reasonable conclusion showing statistical significance, one must consider all the variables that can be measured.

For instance, E10 is not E10. I personally have measured between 2% and 10% ethanol concentration (+/-1% accuracy) from the same exact same station two weeks apart. That variability casts doubt on any results from someone not measuring ethanol concentration; just ONE variable among many that MUST be considered to draw any kind of meaningful conclusion.
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Old 11-06-2012, 08:37 PM   #27 (permalink)
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...the three "H's" definition of "close enough":

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...meaning, sometimes worrying about "...how much fly-shjt is in the pepper..." isn't worth the effort and is simply "close enough" for reasonable minds to make their own decisions.
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Old 11-07-2012, 02:11 AM   #28 (permalink)
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The History Channel's Modern Marvels series did an episode on gasoline. Was on YouTube but it got removed. Might be able to find it elsewhere...

All refineries in the USA, or at least the lower 48 States, use the same recipes to refine two grades of gasoline.

95% of it goes into common carrier pipelines, along with various other chemicals refined from crude oil.

The other 5% goes into company owned pipelines, ie from a Chevron refinery into a Chevron pipeline, mixed with Chevron's additives in Chevron trucks and delivered to Chevron stations.

But most of the country, even at Chevron stations, you have no idea which company actually refined the base gasoline.

The additives are either delivered to the pipeline termini by trucks or railroad tanker, or in large markets it goes down the pipeline.

The additive mixing is a crude and simple as can be. It's simply pumped into the tanker trucks separately from the gasoline and relies on the mixing while filling and sloshing from the truck movement to stir together. That's where the variability in ethanol content can happen, if the guy running the pumps filling the tanker truck screws up.

Pipelines used to use moving plugs called pigs to keep products separate. Pigs were expensive, limited how the lines could be bent and required line downtime as they had to be removed at the terminal then sent back to the start by truck or train.

It was discovered that very little intermixing between products happens without the pigs, even over a couple thousand miles.

A combination of timing, measuring and chemical sensors determine when to start and stop drawing out the pure products. What does mix is called transmix.

Transmix is either sent back to the refineries or sold to power plants with turbines that can burn just about any flammable liquid.

So gasoline is partially recycled, greener than you thought, eh?
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Old 11-07-2012, 07:07 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Google Earth has a set of map "pointers" that show where most refineries are located. Or did at one time.
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:04 PM   #30 (permalink)
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When I drive with my 50cc (aka 63cc) scooter, the difference is more obvious!
My BP gas station gives much better fuel, I get better performance out of it than the other gas stations.
I always fill up my 50/63cc scoot with BP premium. It's much better than shell, and especially the crapanol that chevron and citgo provide!

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