Types of Automobile Fuels

By | May 25, 2014

What is an automobile fuel?
Fuel is the source of energy in a car. All Car engines (except ones that use alternative fuel) generate energy by creating a combustion using fuel. The type of engine inherently depends upon the type of fuel being used. There are six main types of fuel.

Of all the fuels, gasoline is the most common fuel used in cars today. Gasoline, when compared to the other fuels, helps in quick staring of the engine, acceleration and operates quietly. Gasoline contains hydrocarbons. Due to this, when it burns, it produces a lot of smoke and other pollutants that pollute the air. Even though gasoline is considered to be highly effective, it is also considered only to be secondary because of its impacts on the environment and depleting sources.

Diesel is also non-renewable like petrol. Diesel is the most widely used fuel in transport vehicles like buses, boats and trains. Compared to gasoline, diesel gives out less carbon-di-oxide to the environment. However, it creates more nitrous oxide than petrol that causes smog.

In terms of efficiency, diesel lasts longer and they have a fuel efficiency of 30% than gasoline. Also diesel does not seen to function well in cold climates. It tends to freeze and gel like. Due to this, fuel lines become clogged and starting becomes difficult.

Liquefied Petroleum
Liquefied petroleum is an alternative to gasoline and it is also much cleaner. Also called propane, liquefied petroleum is not used in cars as much as gasoline is used but only in a limited number of vehicles.

In some countries, engines are specifically designed to use both types of fuels in a hybrid manner, but in some places, it requires modification to use propane. In comparison to gasoline and diesel, propane produces much less smog and toxins. It is also cheaper.

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG)
Both gasoline and diesel vehicles can be converted to use compressed natural gas. CNG is colorless and odorless. It can be used in two forms: as gas and as liquid in internal combustion engines. Vehicles fitted with CNG apparatus are much more eco-friendly than gasoline or other fuels because they emit 80 percent less ozone depleting substances.

The other advantages of CNG include less costly, and while the engine is modified, its basic characteristics are still retained to be once again switched back to gasoline. Shifting between gasoline and CNG is thus only a matter of a flick of a switch on the dashboard.