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Gasoline
Posted by: wurm
Date: February 25, 2009 07:06PM
I'll admit it. I'm so spoiled for using the SpeedPass wand when I gas up, that I've only ever put Exxon or Mobil gas in my car since I bought it. However, I have accumulated some gas discount points at Stop & Shop where we do 90% of our grocery shopping and it seems a shame to let them go to waste. I'll be saving about 45¢ a gallon, so I'm looking at about $5.00 per fill-up saved. Assuming I can actually bring myself to swipe a card at the pump rather than simply wave a wand, what's the harm in putting in a tankful of "Brand X" gas every now and then?

That's what I figured. Especially since subsequent fill-ups will be at the pumps of the criminally profitable ExxonMobil station. Or is someone going to tell me that all gas – major brand or otherwise – is junk?
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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: josntme
Date: February 25, 2009 07:28PM
My friend in Houston works for Exxon and has that built into his watch. I keep trying to borrow the watch for my trips, and his answer...........:fawkdance:
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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: jdc
Date: February 25, 2009 07:44PM
gas is gas



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: mattkime
Date: February 25, 2009 07:44PM
i can't figure out why brand would matter.



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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: DinerDave
Date: February 25, 2009 08:17PM
So called "Major" brands have different detergent additives to make it their own. Think of this analogy...
The fuel is like going to a 31 flavor soft ice cream stand. It's vanilla (forget choc. for this) and when you say you want strawberry, you get vanilla mixed with strawberry syrup for the flavor.
When a driver pulls up to the terminal, he inserts his card ID'ing him as Brand X. He gets the "vanilla" raw gas with "Brand X's" special additive. Most all terminals are shared like this mostly for logistics. In my case, the nearest terminal my company owns is 3 1/2 hours away each way. My fuel comes from another major manufacturers terminal that is only 1/2 hour away. Less transport cost, less manhours. Just about everyone helps each other out like this, it only makes sense to do so.
Unless you have a very incompetent station owner,and even then water in gas just can't happen with all the electronic sensor devices used nowadays.
So.....yeah, gas is gas for the most part. Some "generic stations" don't use the extra additives, but that is why they can be 3-5 cents cheaper than "branded" stations.
I'll probably get in trouble if I say much more, so I'll stop here.

Dave



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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: olnacl
Date: February 25, 2009 09:16PM
A close friend drives a tanker and if I recall correctly, he delivers to multiple stations from the same terminal (tanker is unmarked). I just assumed then, the gas going to all stations he delivered to was the same, regardless of station branding. I'll have to ask him about the card you describe - he never mentioned that - but then I never asked either. I also don't know whether he drops an entire load at one station or can cover multiple drops with one trip to the terminal. And to think that 45 years ago, I owned a Standard Oil station (well, leased). I should know more about these things.



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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: Filliam H. Muffman
Date: February 26, 2009 01:23AM
It depends on which regional market it is and how it is supplied. It used to be that a SOCal Hallmark station supplied by branded Grey Ghost tankers filled at the company refinery would usually have only their brand fuel. In a market that is supplied by a common carrier pipeline system from one or two refineries, the stations will likely have somewhat generic grade of gasoline.

Gasoline composition from one refinery can also vary greatly depending on local market conditions. It is not a generic commodity product by any means. It is a blend of many different types of molecules and not a single compound like ethanol.



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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: Racer X
Date: February 26, 2009 02:05AM
we have around 50 formulations of gasoline in the US. Most are mandated locally or regionally.

Common carrier pipeline areas have a concentrated blend of additives specific to the brand that the fuel will be sold under. Typically a 5 gallon bucket per tanker. I have seen one dumped into an empty tanker, then filled at a depot from the bulk tank. I think there are 2 refineries here in Washington State right now, and a big biodiesel plant being built soon.
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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: mikebw
Date: February 26, 2009 06:21AM
So then could it be argued that generic gas is actually better in terms of the amount of energy per dollar received? Are the additives really that much help?
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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: Filliam H. Muffman
Date: February 26, 2009 10:18AM
Quote
mikebw
So then could it be argued that generic gas is actually better in terms of the amount of energy per dollar received? Are the additives really that much help?

You should usually buy the lowest octane grade of gas recommended for your car. If Regular is recommended for your car, most of the time a higher octane blend will not give you better mileage or performance. It is likely that an inexpensive independent is getting name brand gas if you live in an area that only has a few large name brand refineries.

Additives can help with some aspects of engine operation. It depends on the car, the state of tune, the location, and how you drive it. Fuel from a small independent refinery with only a basic additive blend is supposedly more likely to get combustion chamber deposits. This is close to the perfect use of the acronym YMMV (your mileage may vary).



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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: graylocks
Date: February 26, 2009 11:33AM
45 cents a gallon! if you saw $5.00 laying on the sidewalk would you keep walking? no, you'd spend a little extra effort to bend over and pick it up. swipe the dang card!
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Re: Gasoline
Posted by: Racer X
Date: February 26, 2009 12:01PM
I grab the 4 packs of Techron at Costco for 12 bucks or whatever it is and add a bottle to my tank every 3 months or so. If my gas has a basic additive pack, and I use the techron every 6 tanks or so, it is still way cheaper.

But I use the Costco/Amex card to buy gas, so its 5% rebate is like 10 cents off a gallon anyway.

so an extra 25 cents a gallon at Chevron, or an extra 3 or 4 bucks for the Techron additive from Costco every 6 tanks.... which is cheaper?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/26/2009 12:03PM by Racer X.
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