I have read the entire recent thread on putting petrol into a diesel
engine. However that scenario was about 10% or less added.
Today my wife filled an empty tank in a diesel car completely with
unleaded petrol in error. The tank must be at least 90% petrol! Less
than one mile down the road the engine started juddering. She realised
her mistake and stopped and called the AA. They advised not driving any
further to avoid damage. The car was towed to a garage. They have said
that they will provide a complete report by friday - but that it will
involve a great deal of work - and the bill is liable to be thousands!
The car is a one year old mercedes cdi estate. Does anyone think they
could be right - or are they likely to be greatly exaggerating?
It never ceases to amaze me how people can do this - there is usually a big
sticker stating "DIESEL" inside the filler flap, the filler hole is a
different size (larger) than for petrol, and surely you can tell it's a
diesel by the rattling noise it makes?
how does this stop someone putting the smaller nozzle in exactly?
I'm sure at the point of driving it you can tell the difference,
but if you drive one of two cars, it must be all too easy to
absentmindedly fill up from the wrong pump. (Just like
occasionally, I still drive out of a drive onto the wrong side
of the road!)
You notice the nozzle seems to rattle around a lot more than it usually
does, that and the usually-black hose has now turned bright green is usually
a dead giveaway.
No, because something as vital as that you would check and double check
before filling. I regularly drive my wife's car which is petrol, but
whenever I fill up either car I always check which one I'm driving and
select the fuel accordingly, as do most people. Just shows, those with more
money don't necessarily have more common sense :)
Well I drive one. The land rover. But all cars rattle to an extent. Its
goes with theterritory of valves, tappets etc etc, and modern lean burn
petrolengines are run to the point of detonation too.
Modsern diesle by the way, that use advanced multi-pulse injection,
don't detonate at low throttle the way traditional ones do.
My step father put 40 quids worth of unleaded in a 7.5tonne lorry
once. Even he can't understand how he did it.
Show how well trained the forecourt monkeys are, that they can blindly
punch a button without looking to see whether the guy actually has a
vehicle and isn't about to immolate himself for kicks. (Almost
happened at a Jet station recently)
Simon Avery, Dartmoor, UK
uk.d-i-y FAQ: http://www.diyfaq.org.uk /
On Wed, 17 Sep 2003 21:02:35 +0100, Matthew Barnard
So what is this huge bill for ?
What are they alleging that you've bust ?
A tankload of petrol is going to run badly, it might even stop it (but
usually doesn't) and it only injures stuff if you either make a habit
of it regularly (injection pumps need proper lubrication) or you
thrash the engine while it's in this mis-firing state.
A mile of gentle driving just isn't going to hurt anything terminal.
Even if you have to pull the injectors out to clean them, that's not
rocket-science, even on a Merc.
Well that's your trouble isn't it. Putting petrol in it (or anything
that's clearly driver error) plays havoc with the star-shaped badges
on it, especially the new ones. You wouldn't believe the price of
fixing them, but you don't have much choice - especially not on a new
Of course they're right.
"To repair one-year-old Merc and maintain Full Service History
- mongo moolah"
On my motor (whichever old shed you pick) I'd pump the tank as best I
could, top it off with Jet A-1 or whatever the appropriate fuel was,
replace the fuel filters and then bleed the fuel system from up-front
as best I could. Run it with my fingers in my ears until the nasty
noises went away, then probably replace the filters again.
The tank drainage goes in the tractor, because that's Romanian and
doesn't care what it drinks.
It requires a fairly compreghensive replacement of all teh fuel filters,
possibly teh fuel pump(s) and a good flush through of all the pipes and
injectors *to be safe*. She may have damaged something as well.
I just paid 75 quid an hour for labour on my last service, so thats not
that many hours work - ten hours say - plus a few parts - to get to a
Needless to say, draining teh tank, and ripping the injector out, and
cranking teh engine untill what comes out smles of diesel, is the simple
way out, and probably would not result in any problems...However, if
they DID get a problem, guess who you would be suing?
Naturally even that is beyond a mercedes grease monkey as well, so they
will simply replce all the most expensive easy to remove bits, flush the
pipework through, and let your insurance pay.
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