ChatterBank1 min ago
Petrol in a diesel engine
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�800, I think they are trying it on.
It all depends on how old the car is, ans how much you value it. If it's a bit of a nail, then top and go. However if a newish car then the best advice would be to drain the tank. There will not be a drain plug, because they cost money for manufacturers to fit, so you have two choices. Find where the fuel supply comes into the engine compartment, split the pipe at a joint, and using an electrical pump, (few quid from local scrapyard) and a big bucket, suck the contents rom the tank, but filler capoff first.
The other method is to lift the back of the car, find the outlet from tank, and split it there with a bit of gravity it will drain.
I imagine the local dealers are imagining you have run contam into the engine, so they are covering their backs. Try ringing and asking how much for just a tank drain, no other work.
I used to do recovery, and at least one per day would do contam(inated fuel). The charge was �100, with a gallon of fresh.
bryntaylor, You need to say how old the car is. If it is a new type engine(common rail fuel system) the fuel pump will be damaged by petrol. On an older style fuel system a general guide line it 20% of the incorrect fuel,no more. If below 20% fill tank right up & keep topping up. If you drive with any petrol in & it is common rail diesel you will end up spending about �6000 so you must be sure...
read this if the link works. I suspect from the price they have quoted it is the earlier fuel system but make sure...
I did something very similar to this about 4 weeks ago.
I'd owned my 1996 Renault Laguna 2.2 diesel for around one year - then for some strange reason, picked up the wrong nozzle!? I wonder if it was because I was at a petrol station other than the one I usually use - I really don't know what happened - anyway, I put in 3.5 litres before realising my stupidity.
My tank was about 4/5 empty, so I immediatly changed over and continued filling with diesel, before driving home.
Straight away, I logged onto the internet and did a search - and there were so many conflicting recommendations. Hardly any of these were backed up with any experiences or hard facts.
So, since then, I have done about 2500 miles. I used pretty much the full tank of diesel before topping it up each time. I guess there are two schools of thought on whether you should continually top up, or use most of the fuel before topping up. I chose the second as by the time you put your second tank of clean diesel on top of the contaminated, you have diluted it to virtually nothing.
The first couple of tanks I nursed the car. Didn't go over about 1/4 throttle, didn't go over 65-70mph - just took it quietly, trying not to let things get too hot.
2500 miles on and it's still fine! Hopefully I haven't done any damage, but then the cars only worth �1000 - I thought it was worth the risk.
As an indication, my tank is about 65 litres, so:
Tank 1: 3.5/65= 5.4%, Tank 2: ~1%, Tank 3: <0.1%
Hope this helps anyone in a similar situation!
1996 Renault RT-D 2.2 (non turbo)
I called recovery who wanted to tow me to my Audi dealer, I refused as I knew they would take me to the cleaners. Instead I chose a local garage with a good reputation who simply drained the fuel tank, replaced the fuel filter, flushed the system and all for �39.95 !!!! The car was fine after that.
No doubt if I had of taken it to the main dealer I would have been looking at hundreds of pounds.
Misfueling occurs 400 times a day in the UK. If it happens to you, don't drive the car, don't even turn the engine on! Get it drained out and flushed. Once done fill the tank FULL with the proper fuel. Some modern cars , when you use the electronic unlocking on your fob, PRIME the glow plug and pressurize the system. Try not to use the fob until the problem has bee sorted. It doesn't have to cost you a fortune (unless you take it to the main dealer).
The red low fuel warning light had been on for last 6 miles,pulled into same garage i always use and put 30 quids worth in. 500 yds down road (kerput) van stopped dead and despite turning over would not start. Rang local garage who look after my van for a tow home, not possible,so rang wife. While i sat and waited i ran through all the possibilities why van wouldnt start, then it dawned on me, looking at till receipt from garage, what a plonker, �30 unleaded on top of possibly half gallon of diesel.
Towed home by wife, that was an experience,her first time towing and certainly my last being towed by her, no power steering and no brake servo on country roads 7 foot behind a chelsea tractor doing 60 miles an hour.
Next morning siphoned all fuel from tank, luckily no anti syphon on this model, so managed plastic tube and petrol cans, 7 gallon of mixed fuel. rang a couple of mates for advice, both been mechanics since leaving school, 30 odd years of experience each, What a pleasant surprise, not a problem they said,get some diesel in and turn it over till it fires, may be smokey and lumpy but it will clear.Worst case scenario would be to have to empty and clean fuel filter, could take as long as 5 minutes and cost you at least a fiver for a drink.Did as they said and it fired up 2 nd attempt,
lumpy for a few yards but other than that runs perfect.
According to my two mechanics,who both work at different garages and knew nothing of the others comments ,this is a regular problem but made worse by the cowboys who charge horrendous fees to pacify worried motorists. In the vast majority of cases once drained and refuelled proprly diesels will start and run with no long term effects.
WHAT A RESULT. COST �30 OF DIESEL PLUS A GOOD DRINK EACH FOR 2 HONEST MECHANICS.
I have a 2010 Vauxhall Insignia CDTI SRi (with a 100,000 mile / 10 year warranty) which uses a common rail fuel system and with around 5 -10 litres of diesel in the tank I put 24 litres of petrol in. I realised as soon as I put the pump back and didn't know what to do...
I then drove approx 1 mile (1.6km) home barely getting above 1000rpm (coasting where possible). Then I read this page and felt sick!
I tried syphoning the car from the fuel line entering the fuel pump without great success (modern cars have a gauze low down across the filler tube (where you put the nozzle when filling up) so I didn't even bother trying syphoning from the filler tube).
I found that the AA have a Fuel Assist service (http://www.theaa.com/motoring_advice/fuels-a
which deals solely with this issue.
Note that their main advice is, if you have put petrol in a diesel car and realised soon enough DO NOT START THE CAR.
I called the AA and the cost is £246 or £185 if you're a member. P.S. joining with the lowest grade membership was about £40 - so join.
The guy came out within an hour and knew exactly what he was doing. He asked if the Electronic Management light had come on at all (it hadn't) and whether the car was chugging at any point (it wasn't) and he said that there would be no damage and the car would be flushed clean once he was finished.
He then proceeded to disconnect the fuel line to the fuel pump and attached a hose from his van and pumped all the fuel out of the tank. He then put some kind of additive into the tank and also filled it with £12 of diesel (approx 8.5 litres). He advised that I go to the garage and fill the car full of diesel and once this got down to quarter full, to fill it again.
The only difference to the car at that point was that it took a couple of extra chugs to turn the engine over when starting the car. This had entirely gone after 1 day (50 miles driving).
£185 fee to drain the car (less £12 diesel and cost of additive)
£40(ish) fee for roadside assist AA membership
Damage to car NIL - although I should point out that this is probably because I had only driven a very short distance and I kept the revs very low. The engine management light did not come on and the car never chugged. I suspect the diesel never actually got into my engine, as there is a small reserve of fuel which sits in the fuel pump reservoir. As I mentioned earlier, the best advise I suppose, if you are aware of your mistake is DO NOT START THE CAR - CALL THE AA fuel assist programme on 0870 240 3985.
The guy said on no account should I tell the dealership because they would invalidate the warranty on the car, despite the fact that it was cleaned out and the electronic engine management system hadn't even detected a fuel issue. He also said that older diesel vehicles (those that don't use a common rail fuel system) could be topped up with diesel providing the petrol only amounted to 10% of the capacity of the engine. With vehicles using a common rail fuel system, it's better to get them cleaned out asap.
Trevor - if you're out there and read this - much respect and many thanks.