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      03-25-2009, 02:23 PM   #23
foosh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J08M3 View Post
Sorry man, I haven't nor do I plan on doing a scientific study of this. I'm just speaking out of my experience, which includes many gallons of gas and a number of cars. Aside from numerous other vehicles, my E92 M3 is the fourth BMW I've put many gallons of gas in from numerous different stations, most of which not on that Top Tier list. None have had a single issue with clogged injectors or any other fuel related problems. All of them were filled with 93 octane with 10% Ethanol (cause all gas here has 10%). I can't even remember hearing from anyone an issue of clogged injectors with a new car in at least 10 years. In fact I'm willing to bet you don't even need 91 octane in this car, only downfall is your comp will retard the timing and you'll be missing out on the HP you could've had.
It's not just about clogged injectors anymore, as I was describing BMW's concern back in the 80's that began their crusade. It's about deposits in the fuel system and the engine's moving parts (valves, etc.). Chances are you either a) purchased enough high-quality fuel to keep your engines clean (as I said many fuels no doubt would qualify for Top Tier status if they went through the certification program), b) you didn't put enough mileage (probably 40-50K plus) on any of the cars to see problems, or c) some combination of both.

People such as myself, who don't tend to keep cars past 30K miles or so, would likely NEVER experience an issue, but it is of concern to many of the most respected manufacturers. That is why it is worth to them to band together to try to raise the bar on fuel standards.

Again, I repeat a non-Top Tier gas may be just as good as a Top Tier gas, but it just hasn't been tested using the same methodology.

Earlier, you referred to Top Tier as a marketing ploy. If it is, it has been a horrific flop in that not many seem to know anything about it, and many of the big oil companies don't think it's worth the cost to participate.
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      03-25-2009, 04:08 PM   #24
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One important thing to note about top tier gas ratings is that for a gas producer to qualify for top tier rating/certification, ALL THREE grades of gas must meet the detergent and other standards. Therefore, if a gas such as BP premium meets top tier standards, but middle grade and regular do not, then BP will not be on the list.

Most, if not all, premium grades made by the major producers meet top tier standards.
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      03-25-2009, 05:34 PM   #25
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One important thing to note about top tier gas ratings is that for a gas producer to qualify for top tier rating/certification, ALL THREE grades of gas must meet the detergent and other standards. Therefore, if a gas such as BP premium meets top tier standards, but middle grade and regular do not, then BP will not be on the list.

Most, if not all, premium grades made by the major producers meet top tier standards.
It is nice to see somebody who understands how TOP TIER certification works.
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      03-25-2009, 05:55 PM   #26
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All the additives things are true.... BUT..... if you want to be sure of the gas you are getting, then go to CORPORATE OWNED gas stations.

Independent Owners can have mulitple branded gas stations in there Network. They purchase gas from JOBBERS or distributers. These Jobbers are distributing many brands of gas. Depending on the relationship of the main Owner of the Gas Staion(s) and the Jobbers Company, current prices throughout the gas brands and what brand stations the Owners owns, they switch it up and bill one of there different stores to save anywhere from 2cents to even 10cents a gallon (YES it adds up quick)
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      03-25-2009, 07:30 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by foosh View Post
I would say that a good policy is to mix it up with a little of everything. If you fill up with a Top Tier brand every so often, you're probably cleaning up any early build-up of deposits from lower detergent fuels long before they become harmful.
Here in the Northeast, Shell promotes its V-Power premium by saying the additives will clean up the deposits left by other brands. So my wife puts generic 93 octane in her (leased) X5, and every time I fill it up (about every 3rd tankful) I go with Shell. Have had zero problems so far. But then again, in 2 1/2 years it won't be "our" car any more.
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      03-25-2009, 07:56 PM   #28
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I have owned an 06 650 conv for the last three yrs, and have tried premium gas and regular. I could not find any difference with performance or gas mileage between the two. Now the 650 is not an M3 engine, but it is a V8 360 hp. I also own a 325 ci 2004 and have never used premium, now 70,000 miles later no problems with engine. Who knows?
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      03-25-2009, 08:49 PM   #29
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I have a 550i and I use to use Shell but switched to Mobil/Exxon. I have seen the difference in idle and performance. The V8 DME's are not ready to deal with gas with ethanol. When my 335 comes, I plan on going back to Shell.
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      03-25-2009, 09:17 PM   #30
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I use BP/Amoco 93 about 98% of the time...I use Shell the rest. Sometimes I do have to put in Sunoco though, such as when travelling on state roads where they have EVERY rest stop.

I can tell you that I had some monitoring on my STi and Sunoco 93 would always cause more detonation than BP or Shell...timing would be retarded accordingly.
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      03-26-2009, 04:04 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asp17 View Post
All the additives things are true.... BUT..... if you want to be sure of the gas you are getting, then go to CORPORATE OWNED gas stations.

Independent Owners can have mulitple branded gas stations in there Network. They purchase gas from JOBBERS or distributers. These Jobbers are distributing many brands of gas. Depending on the relationship of the main Owner of the Gas Staion(s) and the Jobbers Company, current prices throughout the gas brands and what brand stations the Owners owns, they switch it up and bill one of there different stores to save anywhere from 2cents to even 10cents a gallon (YES it adds up quick)
+1

Furthermore, corporate owned gas stations also have control mechanisms in place to ensure that the quality adheres to their standards accross thier network (to avoid reputational damage which can create a greater liability and/or actual loss). Quality in private gas stations is down to the individual owner(s), so its more of a bet who you chose and who you trust. Of course there are honest individuals and tricky corporates, but "generally" I adhere to the above logic, unless of course I know / trust the specific private gas station.

Here in Greece there is also a blacklist of all doggy gas stations i.e. gas stations which have failed random quality checks conducted by the state. This is very helpful for the consumer of course, but it does not and cannot contain all doggy stations at any given point in time.

The above are proxies indicating what to consider in getting good quality gasoline but in any case you can NEVER be 100% sure (i) of the quality of gasoline you get (water / sulphur / other harmful content), and (ii) whether you get what you pay for (eg you pay for 98 octanes for V-Power here, but is it really 98 octane?).

Bottomline, it is best to conduct your own analysis (by taking samples and analysing using a gasoline purity analyser - costs something like $1,800 in its basic / portable form), or simply don't bother and be relaxed about it!!!
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