There is a difference in Gas Quality

If someone tries to tell you that all gas is the same, don't you believe it. I've tracked mileage before in my vehicles, but never to the extent that a little application for my iPhone has enabled me to do it. Not only am I able to track and determine Miles Per Gallon, I can figure out what gas gave me better mileage. I have only put 93 Octane in my Smart since I've owned it, but my guess is that I'm probably not getting 93 octane from certain brands and stations.

Included is the data to see for yourself.

Date Odometer Gallons Cost/Gallon Gas Brand Location MPG
12/21/08 2,663 5.266 $1.97 BP Titusville, FL
12/19/08 2,488 6.187 $1.82 Racetrac Cape Canaveral, FL 33.23
12/15/08 2,262 4.653 $1.84 Sunoco Titusville, FL 36.53
12/12/08 2,107 6.079 $1.81 Racetrac Merritt Island, FL 33.31
12/09/08 1,870 6.865 $1.84 Sunoco Titusville, FL 38.99
12/07/08 1,608 6.086 $1.96 Chevron Gainesville, FL 38.16
12/06/08 1,367 6.958 $1.96 Chevron Gainesville, FL 39.60
12/03/08 1,129 5.245 $1.95 Hess Cocoa, FL 34.21
12/01/08 913 5.944 $2.06 BP Titusville, FL 41.18
11/30/08 693 7.205 $2.22 BP Tampa, fl 37.01
11/27/08 461 3.292 $2.02 Sunoco Titusville, FL 32.20
11/25/08 326 5.252 $2.03 Sunoco Titusville, FL 41.01
11/23/08 156 3.64 $2.00 Hess Cocoa, FL 32.37

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Comment by SailorJ on January 15, 2009 at 7:08pm
I wonder if all gas stations are using ethanol? Here in Central Florida the majority of gas stations use ethanol additives to the gas, (about 10%). This could also be a contributor of a difference in fuel economy. I guess I need to try a station that claims to be ethanol free. Anyone else have any ideas?
Comment by SandraK on January 15, 2009 at 6:29pm
I've thought it seems as if I get better mileage using the BP premium, but haven't tracked it that closely. And, I noticed in my cross-country trips that many states don't have 93 octane premium...so I've just used the highest I could find in those cases.
Comment by SailorJ on January 2, 2009 at 10:37pm
I wonder if running pure gas with no ethanol makes a difference?
Comment by Bill on January 2, 2009 at 9:40pm
Most of the time I use premium (91 octane) from Costco and average 38-40 mpg highway and 32-34 mpg city. I get the best mileage though when I use Chevron's half and half at 89 octane. On that I've gotten 42 mpg city and 44-46 mpg highway. Go figure ...
Comment by Richard E on December 23, 2008 at 1:00am
I just use Excel.
I have much more set up for other metrics. But as far as MPG goes
here in Calif (where I've only found 91 Octane as the highest grade)
Here's my figures. BTW I drive about 50-50 Hwy/City. The entries with 40+ MPG were from a couple of trips we took.
DATE MILEAGE GAS/GAL $ / GAL MPG
13-Oct-08 20.0 New with full tank 0.00
16-Oct-08 129.0 3.35 $3.579 32.54
19-Oct-08 353.0 6.36 $3.539 35.22
25-Oct-08 580.0 6.695 $3.319 33.91
2-Nov-08 801.0 6.388 $2.959 34.60
13-Nov-08 1006.0 6.405 $2.479 32.01
19-Nov-08 1133.0 3.205 $2.519 39.63
25-Nov-08 1225.0 2.9 $2.279 31.72
25-Nov-08 1450.0 5.856 $2.099 38.42
25-Nov-08 1718.0 6.443 $2.199 41.60
26-Nov-08 1826.0 3.27 $2.099 33.03
1-Dec-08 1998.0 5.319 $2.039 32.34
1-Dec-08 2215.0 5.304 $2.339 40.91
1-Dec-08 2419.0 5.016 $1.999 40.67
2-Dec-08 2582.0 4.763 $2.139 34.22
All said and done, I'm getting 34.06 MPG average.
Not too bad.
Comment by SailorJ on December 22, 2008 at 11:48pm
I'm using Gas Cubby. It also covers maintenance and information for all your vehicles. It as you can see, allows you to email a report of all the data to yourself. It was much more extensive than what you see up there.
Comment by dennyrex on December 22, 2008 at 11:17pm
I'm using Mileage Tracker on my iPod touch. Does a great job. 99¢

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=284995693&mt=8
Comment by michael on December 22, 2008 at 9:57am
I've noticed a difference in mileage also. I use only Chevron & Union 76, but don't keep as detailed records as you do.

I'm getting better mileage Nov/Dec than earlier in the year, and attributed that to the change in formulation of the gas, plus the fact that in Nov/Dec I have not used the air conditioner.

Almost all of my driving is urban - I was getting in the 33/35mpg range, and with winter in the 40/42mpg range.

Either way, I am not complaining.

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