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Explorer Sport - fuel?

Discussion in 'Stock 2011 - 2019 Ford Explorer Discussion' started by Sgt1411, April 30, 2014.

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What grade of fuel do you use in your Sport?

  1. Regular 87

    34 vote(s)
  2. mid grade 89

    8 vote(s)
  3. Premium 91-93

    58 vote(s)
  4. I use more than one grade

    5 vote(s)
  5. I'm tuned I have to run Premium

    6 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. JE

    JE Member

    March 10, 2015
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    Londonderry, NH
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    2015 Explorer Sport
    Also note that the engine will adjust to LOWER octane nearly immediately when knocking is sensed but it will be slower to adjust for a HIGHER octane. There have been other conversations on what will cause the engine to readjust to higher octanes but it sounds like resetting the ECM (by unhooking the battery for a while) or making some runs at WOT will speed the process.

    Note that all the reports that say there is no advantage to using higher octane fuels have a phrase like "unless your vehicle is designed for it." The Ecoboost in our Ex Sports IS designed for it, but can also self-adjust for lower octane fuels.

    And it's not alone in that. My 2005 Chevrolet is capable of the same adjustment but with a few different behaviors (that probably aren't of much interest on a Ford forum.)
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  3. bigdude2468

    bigdude2468 Active Member

    April 30, 2014
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    Keep in mind the added performance using mid range or premium comes with a significant increase in cost. Using today's cost its 25% more for premium over 87 octane. Considering the added cost only provides a slight increase in performance, no increase in MPG, I don't see the point.
  4. 1995E

    1995E Well-Known Member

    July 16, 2010
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    95 + 11 Ex both XLT
    The higher octane is so that the car can perform at max performance without knocking and reducing power. If the engine is designed for to have its max power made at 93 octane. An octane like 94 would just be more insurance that it won't knock, but it won't increase performance because the engine isn't tuned to run at pressures higher than what 93 octane fuel would accommodate.

    The only way you can get higher performance is when you use a tune that creates engine environments that require octane higher than the designed 93 and the use of the higher octane is to prevent the engine from combusting itself to death.

    Also, don't confuse higher octane with more energy. The only difference is between the fuels is the ability to reduce pre-detonation.
    Energy density between all octane fuels is the same, the only time energy density would be different is if you had ethanol in the fuel which has a lower energy density.

    As quoted from wikipedia about compression ratio:
    "A high compression ratio is desirable because it allows an engine to extract more mechanical energy from a given mass of air-fuel mixture due to its higher thermal efficiency. This occurs because internal combustion engines are heat engines, and higher efficiency is created because higher compression ratios permit the same combustion temperature to be reached with less fuel, while giving a longer expansion cycle, creating more mechanical power output and lowering the exhaust temperature."

    Unless if you're increasing compression ratios, 93 is the max you'd ever need in these cars.
  5. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

    December 28, 2010
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    I'm with you. Paying an extra 25% isn't worth the minimal performance improvement for me either. I don't tow or drive hard. The extra $$ is better off in my pocket than the oil company's and the government's. :):thumbsup:

  6. Sgt1411

    Sgt1411 Elite Explorer

    February 22, 2011
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    The extra octane makes a noticable difference if you bought a tune from one of the providers.

    I use Chevron 94 and it's significant, but you're right it's at a cost.

    Also noticeable on the exhaust tips, I see none of the black carbon deposits I did with 87.

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