If you’re experiencing financial difficulty due to Covid-19 and want to discuss how we can help, please email us at covidhelp@think-ins.co.uk.

We will review your case and circumstances, and come back to you as quickly as possible during our current business hours (Mon-Fri 9am-5.30pm, Sat 9am-2pm).

Think Insurance, UK, Walsall
Diesel Pump With Car

Five Weird Ways You Could Fuel Your Car!

Have You Considered These Wacky Ways Of Powering Your Motor?

Unbelievable!

With the cost of petrol and diesel seemingly always on the rise, filling your car up can be an expensive business, and a huge source of frustration for drivers. Whilst there is often very little you can do about it, there are some people out there that have decided to take matters in to their own hands and find alternative ways to power their chosen method of transport.

Here are some of the most bizarre, weird and downright strange ways people have fuelled their cars in recent times – from coffee to an actual live horse!

Check out the infographic below.

fuel my car

We’re not sure that any of these methods will ever catch on, but it goes to show the lengths that some people will go to, to avoid having to fill up at the petrol station, and with the amount of coffee we drink in the UK now, and the amount of sewage we produce, who knows, we could be driving around in one of these vehicles in the future!

Fuelling your Car

Fuelling your car, van or motorbike nowadays is pretty straight forward…you drive to the nearest petrol station, select petrol or diesel, and pump your chosen fuel in to your car until you reach the top.

Now granted, there are different types of unleaded petrol to choose from which may or may not be better for your engine or give you more miles per gallon, but it’s not that difficult. And yes, sometimes if you’re in a hurry or you’ve recently got a new car with a different fuel type to your old one, you can get mistaken and put petrol in your diesel car or vice versa. If this happens it can ruin your day and be quite costly to get your petrol tank drained, and you’ll definitely miss any appointments you were planning on driving to that day!

Don’t worry though, you’re not alone! It’s estimated that on average, someone in the UK puts the wrong type of fuel in their car every three and a half minutes.

If you do accidently put the wrong fuel in your vehicle, you need to act quickly to prevent any lasting or extensive damage being caused to your vehicle. Whatever you do, do not put your key in the ignition or switch on the engine.

What happens if you put petrol in a diesel car?

As well as fuelling the car and making it go, diesel also lubricates the fuel pump and other components to make them run smoothly. Petrol on the other hand has the opposite effect, increasing friction between the various engine parts and will end up causing damage to the pump and the fuel lines. Moving the car or even just starting the engine with petrol in your diesel car, could cause damage to your engine resulting in a hefty repair bill.

What happens if you put diesel in a petrol car?

Most petrol cars are made with a fuel neck that is smaller than a diesel pump nozzle, so actually getting diesel in to a petrol-powered car might be more difficult to do which is good news. However, if you do manage to accidently fill up your diesel car with petrol, then it isn’t quite as bad as putting petrol in a diesel, but it is still going to cause you a problem. The likelihood is that you won’t even be able to start your engine, so you won’t be able to cause the same kind of damage as wrongly filling a diesel, however you will still need to get it sorted asap.

What should you do if you’ve used the wrong fuel?

First-things-first, do not start your engine or even put the key in the ignition.

If you manage to realise your mistake before starting your car, you should follow these steps:

  1. Report it to the petrol station so they know what’s happened and why you’re not moving your car;
  2. Make sure the vehicle is in neutral gear;
  3. Push the car to a safe place where it is not in the way or causing an obstruction;
  4. Call your insurance broker straight away to let them know;
  5. If you have a Breakdown insurance policy, then give them a call and they will be able to help you drain your tank and flush it for you.

If your luck is so bad that you don’t realise in time, and you do manage to drive off the petrol forecourt, you’ll find out soon enough as your vehicle starts playing up and eventually grinds to a halt. In this instance you would need to report it as a standard breakdown and you should call your Breakdown insurance provider.

Your Breakdown policy will most likely ensure you’re able to be towed to the nearest garage, but whether it will cover you for misfuelling is a different matter, as policies, and what they cover, can differ from provider-to-provider.

One way of making sure that you never put the wrong fuel in your vehicle again is to get an electric car!

What is an alternative fuel I could use?

Environmental Factors and the Downsides to Petrol and Diesel

With today’s forward thinking society, it comes as no surprise that in some areas of our everyday lives, we are making vast strides to ensure the preservation of our environment. Through the years, we have gone through major breakthroughs on how we can maintain our current lifestyles, while simultaneously protecting the environment.

Petrol and Diesel have been proven countless times to have detrimental impacts on the environment through air pollution. This has had a harsh influence on the populous’ health through the years, and with the growing concerns over climate change, this crisis started the ball rolling on the development of electric cars from the 1990s onwards.

While Diesel is a more efficient fuel than petrol, it is said that Diesels make several times more nitrogen dioxide (NO2) than petrol cars.

What Happens to Diesel and Petrol Next?

It has been reported that from 2040 onwards, Britain’s government has plans to ban the sale of all diesel and petrol cars / vans. This is said to be due to the implementation of the much-anticipated clean air plan. It has been speculated that there had been talks about introducing ‘clean air zones’ where users of diesel and petrol cars past this date would be subject to charges when driving through them, though this is said to have been considered to be a last resort in lowering the pollution levels.

If this ban on cars is confirmed, it may speed up the shift towards electric and hybrid cars.

Alternative Options to Petrol and Diesel

It’s not all doom and gloom when it comes to the future of fuel sources. One of the best sources of eco-friendly fuels is that of an electric car. Their development came into full swing when we faced a worldwide price increase in the price of petroleum. This could have allowed them to produce and create more advanced models of the vehicles which will be more suitable for the general public.

If you’re not ready to take the dive into a fully Electric car, Hybrid electrical cars are always an option. This vehicle combines a conventional car and an electric one, with its main purpose stated as being to achieve a better fuel economy and have a better performance than the conventional vehicle.

Upsides of electrical vehicles

If you’re not fully convinced that an electrical car is a decent replacement for petrol and diesel, then fear not! Here are just a few of the benefits to an electric car:

  • Eco-Friendly Materials – Electrical vehicle manufacturers often go above and beyond when trying to be as clean and green as possible, to the extent that some production companies ensure that their cars are produced with recycled materials and even bio-based materials for the interior.
  • Health Benefits – No petrol and diesel could mean no harsh exhaust emissions polluting the air, and in fact, most of these vehicles don’t even have an exhaust pipe. As well as this, electrical cars are said to be a fair bit quieter than conventional vehicles which means less noise pollution too!
  • No Car Tax – Providing the new vehicle costs less than £40,000, you are not required to pay car tax. It’s as simple as that!

The Myths

Pure electrical cars are slower

Incorrect. While over 47% of people believe that electric cars accelerate much slower than a petrol and diesel car, it’s actually quite the opposite.

They are extremely expensive

While the initial cost of the car may be slightly higher than your average diesel or petrol vehicle, you may find that an electric car can save you money in the long run due to not paying any vehicle tax and the reduction in fuel costs if you were to drive a pure electrical car.

They constantly run out of electricity

Incorrect. As a matter of fact, the newer models of electric cars can potentially drive over 200 miles, and this is constantly being worked on to increase the amount. This is a reasonable sized journey when you take into account that the average UK car journey is around 9 miles.

They’re actually worse for the environment

Incorrect. In recent debates people have questioned their eco-friendliness due to the electricity being sourced from fossil fuels. It can be said that even when powered by the most carbon intensive electricity, they still emit fewer greenhouse gasses than that of a diesel or petrol vehicle.