ST. LOUIS (KMOX) –  As fuel prices continue to climb, it might be tempting to try and save some money by filling up with regular unleaded gasoline, even if the owner’s manual says your engine needs the costlier premium blend.

But analyst Carroll Lachnit with says pumping cheaper regular unleaded gas into a vehicle that requires premium could damage your engine.

“The peak of the combustion process isn’t occurring at the optimal moment for the engine’s cycle,” Lachnit explained. “So you hear the shock wave that creates a sound and that’s cylinder pressure building internally quite dramatically, and over time you can ruin some engine components.”

And that, she said, could mean all the money you’re saving at the pump might have to go toward paying a mechanic to fix the damage.

Lachnit added that if the use of premium is merely recommended, not required, chances are you can get by with using the cheaper fuel to save some thirty cents per gallon.

She was a guest on KMOX’s Total Information AM.


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