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Anyone altering their driving habits due to outrageous gas prices?

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Old 08-16-2007, 03:31 PM   #316
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Originally Posted by Ntruder View Post
But, cars with either high compression ratios or running high levels of forced induction, like the Evo, can actually be at risk of predetonation with 87 octane fuels. Higher octane fuels burn longer, and stay burning throughout the entire stroke. Lower octane fuels will detonate just by being compressed (called pre-detonation) which can severely damage your engine if it happens before the downstroke

I know a guy who drove a 93 Rx7 and popped some apex seals from pre-detonation on a single tank of 87 octane.

of course, those RX7's were known to blow seals under any circumstances

But definitely true. Never run 87/89 octane in a forced induction setup. Or your engine will start telling you knock knock jokes that you won't find humorous.
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Old 08-16-2007, 07:15 PM   #317
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of course, those RX7's were known to blow seals under any circumstances

But definitely true. Never run 87/89 octane in a forced induction setup. Or your engine will start telling you knock knock jokes that you won't find humorous.
Yeah, the cooling system was a pile of steaming shit.

But you are correct, with F/I setups or ultra high compression engines, there is actually a risk to using lower octane fuels.
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Old 08-16-2007, 07:53 PM   #318
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Yeah, the cooling system was a pile of steaming shit.

But you are correct, with F/I setups or ultra high compression engines, there is actually a risk to using lower octane fuels.
That is actually one of my serious pet peeves as I HATE it when people go out and buy a nice performance vehicle and then want to get cheap on the fuel. I visit a few TBSS forums daily, and I just don't understand it how every so often someone will come by and ask if it's okay to run 87 octane in their SUV. With a compression ratio of around 11:1, it should be common sense before you even get to the big sticker on the fuel cap that tells you to run premium.....

Why buy a performance vehicle if you are going to get cheap. For those who want to be thrift with fuel costs, GM makes the TB with a 303hp 5.3 litre V8 that can run on regular. I know that many moderne engines are equipped with knock sensors that will pull back timing, but they can only compensate for so much as any spark knocking(even borderline) could cause damage. I know that when fuel costs get high, some people want to save money but that is part of the cost of owning a performance vehicle.
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Old 08-16-2007, 08:53 PM   #319
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between all the cars my wife and I have owned in the last 3 years, only one could take 87 octane - our current 4Runner. Aside from that, they were all 91+ octane engines...

I'm so used to it now, and I rarely drive the 4Runner so I don't gas it up...I'm a 93 octane guy. Hell I even "treat" the 4Runner to something above 87 octane once in a while.
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Old 12-11-2007, 10:43 AM   #320
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I still buy 93 octane for my Volvo, but I take the Metro to work so gas isn't much of an issue for me. I just make sure to buy it a little ways outside DC because the price can drop ~20 cents if I drive out just a little bit (maybe 5 miles into Maryland).
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Old 12-11-2007, 12:54 PM   #321
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I still buy 93 octane for my Volvo, but I take the Metro to work so gas isn't much of an issue for me. I just make sure to buy it a little ways outside DC because the price can drop ~20 cents if I drive out just a little bit (maybe 5 miles into Maryland).
Oh man, I feel sorry for you. That Maryland RFG is utter garbage as my TBSS ran like crap while I was out in Maryland. I also noticed my fuel economy was pretty bad with that stuff as well.

I guess it is kind of like Chicago where if you leave the city limits, gas prices drop really fast. I was in Chicago on Friday night and ran on vapors till I got outside the city limits as petrol was 30 cents cheaper per gallon. That is a big deal since my SUV has a 22 gallon fuel tank and requires premium.
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Old 12-11-2007, 02:19 PM   #322
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Still drive at 80 to 85 mph sometimes 90 mph and use MMO (Marvel Mystery Oil to increase gas mileage and also put in 16 ozs in the tranny and 1 quart in the oil.
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Old 12-19-2007, 04:39 AM   #323
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Old 12-19-2007, 12:35 PM   #324
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I used to not really drive a lot in the first place, now I'm driving even less.
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Old 12-19-2007, 12:37 PM   #325
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Getting back to the original question, on Dec 1st I replaced my 2000 Dodge Caravan with a 2008 Honda Fit. The Caravan was top heavy, so I am learning to drive again. Going with the smaller car is a reaction to not only the current gas prices (which are manageable), but the possibility of supply / price problems in the future.

There was a report in the newspaper that said gasoline consumption in the USA has declined three straight months in a row. The government is not sure what is causing this (or how long it will last), but listed three possibilities:
(1) The $3 price level is meeting resistance from consumers, who are cutting back on driving.
(2) We are seeing a shift to smaller, more efficient cars and are now beginning to see the impact.
(3) We are moving into a recession and the decline is an early indicator.

Guess all three are a factor. My supervisor, who lives in a small town about 45 - 50 minutes a day from Little Rock is eying my car as a commuter vehicle. His pickup truck gets about 12 MPG.

I have a realtor friend who has a huge, fairly new, luxurious SUV and considered trading it in on something more economical. Several dealers told him they would not allow anything in trade - they have a glut of SUVs right now. At the current price levels, he will spend around $9,000 a year in gasonline, but then he uses his vehicle in his job. As a comparison, I will spend around $1,000.
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Old 12-19-2007, 12:53 PM   #326
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To add, #4 would be that while consumer demand for fuel is very inelastic in the short term, gas prices may have been high enough for a long enough period of time to move into a long term time structure where demand would be far more elastic to price levels of fuel. All of the possibilities stated are likely working together as a combination as they really do tie into each other. It makes sense that an uncertain economic future is definately cutting into vehicles sales(we've seen this as all cars/trucks are not selling as well). However, gas prices have been high enough for a long enough time that people are now expecting high fuel prices and are making the adjustments in vehicle purchase decisions.

My only concern is that things are moving too slowly in looking for alternative sources of fuel for automobiles. China hasn't even begun to realize their economic possibilities yet, and they are already belching nearly as much CO2 into the environment as we are. As their industrial revolution continues, prices of oil are going to get interesting as many oil exporting countries are already pumping at, or very near full capacity. I believe only a few countries like Saudi Arabia, Venezuala, and a couple others have the ability to pump more at this time.

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Originally Posted by SLedford View Post
Getting back to the original question, on Dec 1st I replaced my 2000 Dodge Caravan with a 2008 Honda Fit. The Caravan was top heavy, so I am learning to drive again. Going with the smaller car is a reaction to not only the current gas prices (which are manageable), but the possibility of supply / price problems in the future.

There was a report in the newspaper that said gasoline consumption in the USA has declined three straight months in a row. The government is not sure what is causing this (or how long it will last), but listed three possibilities:
(1) The $3 price level is meeting resistance from consumers, who are cutting back on driving.
(2) We are seeing a shift to smaller, more efficient cars and are now beginning to see the impact.
(3) We are moving into a recession and the decline is an early indicator.

Guess all three are a factor. My supervisor, who lives in a small town about 45 - 50 minutes a day from Little Rock is eying my car as a commuter vehicle. His pickup truck gets about 12 MPG.

I have a realtor friend who has a huge, fairly new, luxurious SUV and considered trading it in on something more economical. Several dealers told him they would not allow anything in trade - they have a glut of SUVs right now. At the current price levels, he will spend around $9,000 a year in gasonline, but then he uses his vehicle in his job. As a comparison, I will spend around $1,000.
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Old 12-19-2007, 01:23 PM   #327
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One concern is shifting to more eco friendly methods of locomotion leads to more energy use in the mass retooling and acquisition of new resources that would be required to support it.
Maybe to the point of diminishing returns for a undetermined length of time.

When I see the Hybrid and flex-fuel vehicles we have now, I can't help but think they are nothing more than moving demos of what is possible. "See? We can do it!"

The manufacturer's original concerns that the people will not accept it because of power, style, etc. is a failing argument anymore. But even when valid, pales compared to what will be involved in replacing the present infrastructure of the automobile industry with mass produced green cars.

Or maybe I'm being too pessimistic.
But I hate to see a revised industry with something good for our environment, start up only to find the transition itself damaged the very things we are trying to protect. Don't get me wrong, something needs to be done, and getting the rest of the world on board even with the 'still dirty' standards we have in North America is not going to happen overnight either, and probably is fraught with the same risks.
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Old 12-19-2007, 02:59 PM   #328
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daleb,

My move to a Honda Fit was from old technology (gasoline combustion engine) to old technology. The fuel savings are due to the size and design of the auto rather than the introduction of new technology.

Two reasons that I stayed away from the current hybrids (gasoline & electric) is that they are still new technologies with no real track record, and the initial cost of the vehicle is much higher than a comparable gasoline powered auto.

If the batteries fail 8 years down the road and cost $5k to replace, this could very well eliminate any fuel savings by the owner. For example, assume my Fit gets 35 MPG and the hybrid gets 50 MPG. Assume I drive 12,000 miles per year and that gasoline costs $3.00. My hybrid fuel bill is $720, my Honda Fit fuel bill $1,028, a savings of $308 per year for the hybrid, or $2,464 over the 8 year period in my example above. And that doesn't factor in the extra $10-15k cost for the hybrid vehicle in the first place.

I may get some "hate mail" on this, but I think that there is a lot more "feel good" benefit to the hybrid owner than actual benefit to the environment. At the same time, we will eventually have to replace gasoline, so it is important to look at other options.
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Old 12-19-2007, 08:11 PM   #329
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That's actually a very good point in this debate as too many people don't understand the true costs of doing something these days. The good thing about flex-fuel vehicles is that at least they have the flexibility to run on either or both E85/petrol combined. Of course, I hope people realize that it's pretty clear that E85 will likely never be the complete replacement as the world simply couldn't produce enough of it. As for the attitudes of some Hybrid owners, there is a very funny episode of South Park you should check out. It is called Smug Alert and is part of Season 10. Those South Park blokes rip apart hybrid owners.

Unfortunately, I don't think any of us really knows the solution to this problem and I guess trying something may be better than not trying anything at all. I think we will have a clearer picture in 10 years as new technology developers, but we just don't know right now. This is one reason why I think the Chevy Volt concept is pretty neat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by daleb View Post
One concern is shifting to more eco friendly methods of locomotion leads to more energy use in the mass retooling and acquisition of new resources that would be required to support it.
Maybe to the point of diminishing returns for a undetermined length of time.

When I see the Hybrid and flex-fuel vehicles we have now, I can't help but think they are nothing more than moving demos of what is possible. "See? We can do it!"

The manufacturer's original concerns that the people will not accept it because of power, style, etc. is a failing argument anymore. But even when valid, pales compared to what will be involved in replacing the present infrastructure of the automobile industry with mass produced green cars.

Or maybe I'm being too pessimistic.
But I hate to see a revised industry with something good for our environment, start up only to find the transition itself damaged the very things we are trying to protect. Don't get me wrong, something needs to be done, and getting the rest of the world on board even with the 'still dirty' standards we have in North America is not going to happen overnight either, and probably is fraught with the same risks.
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Old 12-19-2007, 08:17 PM   #330
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SLedford View Post
daleb,

My move to a Honda Fit was from old technology (gasoline combustion engine) to old technology. The fuel savings are due to the size and design of the auto rather than the introduction of new technology.

Two reasons that I stayed away from the current hybrids (gasoline & electric) is that they are still new technologies with no real track record, and the initial cost of the vehicle is much higher than a comparable gasoline powered auto.

If the batteries fail 8 years down the road and cost $5k to replace, this could very well eliminate any fuel savings by the owner. For example, assume my Fit gets 35 MPG and the hybrid gets 50 MPG. Assume I drive 12,000 miles per year and that gasoline costs $3.00. My hybrid fuel bill is $720, my Honda Fit fuel bill $1,028, a savings of $308 per year for the hybrid, or $2,464 over the 8 year period in my example above. And that doesn't factor in the extra $10-15k cost for the hybrid vehicle in the first place.

I may get some "hate mail" on this, but I think that there is a lot more "feel good" benefit to the hybrid owner than actual benefit to the environment. At the same time, we will eventually have to replace gasoline, so it is important to look at other options.
You certainly will not get 'hate mail' from me.
I think you made a very wise decision and based on real world experiences.
Don't get me wrong. I would gladly consider paying something extra to go more green with my next vehicle.
Every bit counts. I was only talking about the big picture, and getting enough interest stirred up, and the right people to garner up greater acceptance and the knowledge as to how best implement to it.
I think there is more emphasis on getting it done, than getting it done right.
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