Regular Gas Versus Premium - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Regular Gas Versus Premium

Linda Hosmer

Channel 2 News

Everywhere you go, you can't escape the high gas prices. 

The latest averages for regular unleaded Monday night were $4.19/gallon for Reno, $4.25 for Nevada, and across the nation it's $4.08. 

For premium the average for Reno was $4.57, across the state it's $4.64, and for the nation is $4.49.

So besides the expense is there a difference between premium and regular unleaded gas? 

Gas expert Peter Krueger says yes, "It has to do with its energy component and its anti-knock component."  Everytime you pull up to the gas station you see an octane level, usually 87, 89, and 91.  The higher the level the easier it is for your car to burn the gas.

But only high performance require premium gas according to some car manuals, that's because the engines in these cars are designed for higher compression which means you get more power.

So if you fill up on a lower grade, you run the risk of damaging your cars engine.

Krueger also told us that octane isn't as critical at higher elevations compared to areas at sea level.

"The higher the altitude the lower the octane and it has to do with there's less oxygen and your car has to compensate for that."

As for what you're getting when you choose to go for the middle of the road fuel. Krugrer says it's a mixture, 60 percent premium fuel and 40 percent regular.

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