Not getting the octane you pay for

Joined
Feb 15, 2003
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12,962
Location
Jupiter, Florida
I'm currently in NY, driving my older Jag X-type, high compression 2.5L V6, with a manual transmission. A responsive and throaty little engine, and the engine's nature is a major reason why I keep the car.

The car absolutely, positively hates regular, low octane gas. Although it seems to be able to tolerate ethanol content pretty well, in other words, non ethanol fuel does not seem to make it run any better (maybe a touch slower than premium) and MAYBE only slightly improves MPG. With Regular, ignition timing is pulled and the engine becomes quite non responsive, quieter, mushy-feeling, and fuel economy really suffers.

So, I pay for premium fuel and enjoy proper operation. BTW, I'm burning a tank per day.

HOWEVER, I'm paying nearly $6 per gal for 93 and often getting what I think is regular. The Gulf station was the first time it happened about 2 months ago. Now it's every other fill up at various stations. I know as soon as I pull out of the station. Any thoughts on how to combat this? Stations that were once known to be good are now selling me (what I think is) low octane fuel at the premium pump.

The instant I put good fuel in, it picks right back up.

I get about 225 miles per tank on regular or "fake premium" and about 325-360 miles per tank on good fuel.

I'm about to snatch a knot in somebody's (insert bad word here). I spend a flat out fortune on fuel and want what I pay for.
 
Joined
Nov 16, 2002
Messages
35,459
Location
NJ
I've always wondered what octane I'm truly getting.

Years ago an engineer from one of the oil companies told me they ran advertisements claiming more detergents for grade XYZ. A short while after they reduced the detergent amount knowing no one would know. Wouldn't surprise me there are some instances of this.
 

Cujet

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Joined
Feb 15, 2003
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Jupiter, Florida
I don't want to confront the station's attendant. They are generally foreigners and prob don't have control or knowledge of the issue. If I were to guess, I'm thinking they transportation company is causing the issues. Probably a mafia related scam, knowing these people.....
 
Joined
Aug 23, 2010
Messages
3,798
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pa
my 2001 audi TT REQUIRES 93 oct even stock + my APR tune also requires similar. No issues with gas in Pa usually shell, exxon, or citgo which is priced best! reporting your issue may help + using another gas station may be a good idea
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2010
Messages
8,283
Location
Atlanta,GA
I'm currently in NY, driving my older Jag X-type, high compression 2.5L V6, with a manual transmission. A responsive and throaty little engine, and the engine's nature is a major reason why I keep the car.

The car absolutely, positively hates regular, low octane gas. Although it seems to be able to tolerate ethanol content pretty well, in other words, non ethanol fuel does not seem to make it run any better (maybe a touch slower than premium) and MAYBE only slightly improves MPG. With Regular, ignition timing is pulled and the engine becomes quite non responsive, quieter, mushy-feeling, and fuel economy really suffers.

So, I pay for premium fuel and enjoy proper operation. BTW, I'm burning a tank per day.

HOWEVER, I'm paying nearly $6 per gal for 93 and often getting what I think is regular. The Gulf station was the first time it happened about 2 months ago. Now it's every other fill up at various stations. I know as soon as I pull out of the station. Any thoughts on how to combat this? Stations that were once known to be good are now selling me (what I think is) low octane fuel at the premium pump.

The instant I put good fuel in, it picks right back up.

I get about 225 miles per tank on regular or "fake premium" and about 325-360 miles per tank on good fuel.

I'm about to snatch a knot in somebody's (insert bad word here). I spend a flat out fortune on fuel and want what I pay for.
Complain to NY State.

It appears to be a municipality which handles stations.

"..

Inspection​

State inspectors sample gasoline and diesel fuel at terminals at least monthly. Compliance at the terminals is usually very high as the petroleum industry takes great pains to see that the supply meets the ASTM standards. Municipal inspectors sample gasoline and diesel fuels at the retail stations on a random basis. They try to inspect about 60% of the stations in each municipality each year. In addition to taking the samples, municipal inspectors look for other problems like water contamination. Municipalities are reimbursed by the state for their work under this program.
The terminal and retail samples are shipped to a contract laboratory where they are tested for conformance with the standards. We find only a small fraction of samples that fail to comply with the standards each year..."


(518) 457-3146
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2014
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2,189
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WV
I wouldn't trust NY state to inspect properly. Too much corruption and not enough honest oversight in that govt. Most states are good about inspecting.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
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9,737
Location
Illinois
Back when you knew what you were getting, and how much you were getting...

1659719808272.jpg
 

Cujet

Thread starter
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Feb 15, 2003
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Jupiter, Florida
I talked with some locals, they think it's organized crime too. Where the price differential is somehow skimmed off and the customer gets Regular for the price of Premium.
 
Joined
Apr 4, 2012
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Location
Kendall, FL
I talked with some locals, they think it's organized crime too. Where the price differential is somehow skimmed off and the customer gets Regular for the price of Premium.
...and that difference is substantial in some places. I filled up this morning at a local Shell station and paid $3.69 for 87. The 93 was $4.89
 
Joined
Mar 30, 2015
Messages
9,686
Location
Lake Havasu City, Arizona
Everytime you squeeze a gas pump, you're at their mercy as far as both quantity and quality. My guess is we're getting screwed on both far more than we know, or can prove. And it's more than likely been that way for a long while..... Because it can be.
 

Cujet

Thread starter
Joined
Feb 15, 2003
Messages
12,962
Location
Jupiter, Florida
Everytime you squeeze a gas pump, you're at their mercy as far as both quantity and quality. My guess is we're getting screwed on both far more than we know, or can prove. And it's more than likely been that way for a long while..... Because it can be.
Yes, and I'm fairly sure it happens a lot. But here locally near the SWF airport, this is new.
 
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
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Ohio
...and that difference is substantial in some places. I filled up this morning at a local Shell station and paid $3.69 for 87. The 93 was $4.89
Dang ! There's a Sunoco in town that generally has good price on gas but their premium is $1 more so I don't go there. Almost all other stations charge $0.50 higher for premium. It's not about the $$ either, it's the principle of dinging people harder when their car likes/requires premium.
 
Joined
Jul 18, 2010
Messages
1,307
Location
Colorado
I'm currently in NY, driving my older Jag X-type, high compression 2.5L V6, with a manual transmission. A responsive and throaty little engine, and the engine's nature is a major reason why I keep the car.

The car absolutely, positively hates regular, low octane gas. Although it seems to be able to tolerate ethanol content pretty well, in other words, non ethanol fuel does not seem to make it run any better (maybe a touch slower than premium) and MAYBE only slightly improves MPG. With Regular, ignition timing is pulled and the engine becomes quite non responsive, quieter, mushy-feeling, and fuel economy really suffers.

So, I pay for premium fuel and enjoy proper operation. BTW, I'm burning a tank per day.

HOWEVER, I'm paying nearly $6 per gal for 93 and often getting what I think is regular. The Gulf station was the first time it happened about 2 months ago. Now it's every other fill up at various stations. I know as soon as I pull out of the station. Any thoughts on how to combat this? Stations that were once known to be good are now selling me (what I think is) low octane fuel at the premium pump.

The instant I put good fuel in, it picks right back up.

I get about 225 miles per tank on regular or "fake premium" and about 325-360 miles per tank on good fuel.

I'm about to snatch a knot in somebody's (insert bad word here). I spend a flat out fortune on fuel and want what I pay for.
How are burning a tank a day?
 
Joined
Mar 5, 2015
Messages
2,740
Location
Juno Beach FL
...and that difference is substantial in some places. I filled up this morning at a local Shell station and paid $3.69 for 87. The 93 was $4.89
If I had to guess, the 87 is E-10, which is pretty standard everywhere I have seen in Florida. The 93 may have been "Rec 93" which is E-0, or pure gasoline.

Rec 93 is not available everywhere, and the one station near me that I am aware of has a big sign advertising that it sells Rec 93. If I were running a station near me selling Rec 93 I would likely charge a pretty premium for it.
 
Joined
Jun 5, 2003
Messages
25,551
Location
Apple Valley, California
Dang ! There's a Sunoco in town that generally has good price on gas but their premium is $1 more so I don't go there. Almost all other stations charge $0.50 higher for premium. It's not about the $$ either, it's the principle of dinging people harder when their car likes/requires premium.
I have heard of the huge price difference between regular and premium. Here premium is only $.30-$.40 more.

The state of California is very strict on gas stations here. I can't see a station selling lower octane fuel as I'm sure the fines would be huge.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2003
Messages
2,369
Location
Daytona Beach
I don't want to confront the station's attendant. They are generally foreigners and prob don't have control or knowledge of the issue. If I were to guess, I'm thinking they transportation company is causing the issues. Probably a mafia related scam, knowing these people.....
Not likely that you need to include the Mafia, they've moved on to bigger things. However, if you are dealing with "Mom & Pop" type stores, that is likely the issue. Independents can intentionally over order the 87 octane, and have the driver drop the amount that won't fit into the premium tank(s).
It's been this way for years.
Buy your gas from the places that you know are reliable, and avoid the rest.
 
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