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The Warranty Insights

Have you just put the wrong fuel in your car?

31 August 2016

If you have put the wrong fuel in your car and proceeded to drive the car on the wrong fuel without realising, the car will not get that far before the wrong fuel contaminates the car's engine and causes the car to shut off.

What is the first thing I should do?

Don't turn on the ignition or start the car - contact a repairer, they will remove the contaminated fuel and replace it with a quantity of clean fuel.

Calling a repairer will mean that you can avoid possible costly repairs to your fuel system.

What if it is too late?

If, assuming you discover your mistake fairly quickly, a repairer can still help and many will be able to drain, flush and refill your tank at the side of the road

So, you have put petrol in your diesel car?

As petrol nozzles will fit into most modern diesel filler necks this is the most common mistake, and unfortunately also the more serious of the two mistakes.

Diesel acts as a lubricant, helping the fuel pump to do its job. If petrol's mixed with diesel it has the opposite effect, acting like a solvent. The more it's pumped through your fuel system, the more damage it will do. It can even result in you needing a new engine.

Have you put diesel in your petrol car?

This of course does happen but is less common as the diesel nozzle is larger and won't fit most petrol filler necks.

How to prevent misfiling your car?

Firstly, don't get distracted at the pump, it sounds obvious but study the pump and read the label, often inside of the filler door you will have a fuel label.

Don't just rely on the colour, is the pump handle in the right cradle.

Try not to refuel in a hurry, slow down it's an expensive mistake and can take many hours to rectify.

If you drive a diesel car did you know that you can buy a device that fits into your filler neck?

Are you in a different car, a hire car perhaps or a second car, be careful?

You are not alone

It's more common than you think, every 5 minutes a UK motorist puts the wrong fuel type into their car, van or motorcycle.