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Why Additives

Top Tier Detergent Gasoline

Top Tier Detergent Gasoline is the premier standard for gasoline performance. Six of the world's top automakers—BMW, General Motors, Honda, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Audi—state that the current EPA minimum detergent requirements do not go far enough to ensure optimal engine performance.

Since the minimum additive performance standards were first established by the EPA in 1995, most gasoline marketers have actually reduced the concentration level of detergent additive in their gasoline by up to 50 percent. As a result, the ability of a vehicle to maintain stringent Tier 2 emissions standards have been hampered, leading to engine deposits that can have a big impact on in-use emissions and driver satisfaction. In an era when global warming has become a reality, everyone recognizes that we all have to do our part to protect the environment. Six of the world's largest auto manufacturers recognize that today's additive packages in gasoline don't do enough to keep injectors clean and reduce emissions. Because of the buildup of gum and varnish on the injectors, the use of high-quality fuel system treatments, like Greased Lightning's Fuel System Treatment, keeps injectors clean, improves performance, reduces emissions, and can have an impact one vehicle at a time to reduce global warming.

BMW, General Motors, Honda, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Audi all believe the current gasoline available at the pump doesn't go far enough toward cleaning up the environment. Currently, many gasoline retailers throughout the country provide fuels with lower-quality additive packages that can build up deposits on both fuel injectors and intake valves. Other additives can build up deposits in combustion chambers and may lead to intake-valve sticking. These lower levels of additives can have negative impacts on engine performance and vehicle responsiveness.

These automakers have raised the bar. Top Tier Detergent Gasoline helps drivers avoid lower-quality gasoline that can leave deposits on critical engine parts, which reduces engine performance. That's something both drivers and automakers want to avoid.

“Since the minimum additive performance standards were first established by the EPA in 1995, most gasoline marketers have actually reduced the concentration level of detergent additive in their gasoline by up to 50 percent.”

“Currently, many gasoline retailers throughout the country provide fuels with lower-quality additive packages that can build up deposits on fuel injectors and intake valves.”

Mr. Greg Lebedev, President and CEO
American Chemistry Council
1300 Wilson Blvd.
Arlington, VA 22209

Dear Mr. Lebedev:

We are pleased to announce a new, voluntary program to improve gasoline quality through enhanced detergency.

Automakers are concerned about the low levels of detergent additive in gasoline as evidenced by unwashed gum values in gasoline surveys conducted on behalf of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. The ability of a vehicle to maintain stringent Tier 2 emissions standards will be hampered if gasoline detergency is low.

Our companies have decided to create new, voluntary deposit control standards for gasoline that exceed those of EPA's deposit control rule. Their purpose is to define a new class of commercial gasoline with enhanced detergency called Top Tier Detergent Gasoline. Details of the performance standards are found in the companion document.

The intention of Top Tier Detergent Gasoline is to create a winning situation for auto companies, oil companies, and the consumer. Top Tier Detergent Gasoline will help improve gasoline quality, which will benefit the auto industry and the consumer, and it will provide refiners and marketers an opportunity to differentiate their products in the marketplace, advertise performance features, and increase market share. We believe this is the right time to improve gasoline detergency as Tier 2 emissions standards take full effect.

The Top Tier Detergent Gasoline program will be introduced at the American Petroleum Institute's 33rd Automotive/Petroleum Industry Forum on April 6, 2004, in Dearborn, MI. The program will officially commence on May 3, 2004. The program is completely voluntary, and marketers who do not wish to participate may continue to market gasoline as they are currently doing.

We look forward to working with your member companies that provide deposit control chemistry to the oil industry, to improve the quality of gasoline in the United States.

BMW of North America, Inc.
General Motors Corporation
Honda
Toyota
General Motors
Audi

Andrew Buczynsky, GM's fuel guru, says that with gas, like almost everything else, you do get what you pay for. Buy cheap fuel, and you risk coating parts of your engine with thick deposits that can dramatically affect your car's performance. There are a number of possible conditions, including sticky intake valves and clogged fuel injectors.

Choked injectors distribute fuel unevenly, so instead of having a well-mixed brew of gasoline and air entering the combustion chamber, you get an intake charge with pockets of too much fuel and alternatively lean portions. If there's not enough fuel around the spark plug when it sparks, then you don't get the usual combustion that drives the piston downward. In technical terms it's known as a misfire.

Every engine misfires now and then, but misfires usually occur so infrequently that the driver never notices. The car's engine computer knows what's up, though. When the frequency of misfires reaches a certain point, the computer raises a red flag and turns on the "service engine soon" light on the dash, which means a dreaded trip to the dealer. Ignore the light, and the misfires may get frequent enough that the car feels sluggish. The repair for this type of problem depends on the severity of the deposits. In mild cases, the technician may be able to simply scrape clean the fuel injectors or sometimes a bottle of fuel-injector cleaner will do the trick. In some cases, though, the fuel injectors will have to be replaced. If the deposits have formed on the intake valves, then you're looking at a cylinder-head rebuild. The cost of the repair will depend on the severity of the problem and whether your car has a warranty in effect. The worst case, however, could mean a bill of more than $1,000.

So, a simple solution to dirty injectors is to add a bottle of Greased Lightning's Fuel System Treatment every 12,000 miles. This treatment will keep the gum and varnish deposits that build up on your injectors from reducing performance, decreasing fuel mileage, and increasing emissions.

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