Gas-Saving Moment of the Day: Mix Your Octanes


Today’s gas-saving moment comes courtesy of senior editor Joe Wiesenfelder, who has an interesting idea about octane ratings. We mentioned before that unless your car “requires” a higher octane, you can go with the cheap stuff. Even if it’s required, though, you can consider splitting your octanes.

According to Wiesenfelder, “Yes, most cars can run on regular, but some cars require premium and some drivers insist on using the recommended octane.

“To that end, I’ll use Chicago as an example. We get a choice of 87, 89 and 93 octane, but the overwhelming majority of cars that call for premium want 91 octane. That means there are people out there who pay extra for 93. There is zero benefit to running any car on higher octane than it’s spec’d for.

“It was probably too much of a pain before, but with pennies being squeezed, it might be worth people’s while to fill half with 89 octane and half with 93. The result is a tankful of 91 for less money.”

How much less money? Not a fortune certainly, but when evaluating how to best pinch your pennies, it’s good to check out every last nook and cranny for savings.

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