Ever seen people filling the wrong fuel in their cars? It happens often enough, trust me! I've seen it while filling up and while at work but I can't claim to have done it myself but in the event that this does happen to you or a loved one, you'll be glad you read this article.
This topic was brought up earlier today because I was reading the news and I saw an article which reported that a service station in New Zealand accidentally filled its petrol reservoirs with diesel!? Yep, it happened and it claimed quite a few innocent victims before someone noticed the mistake; safe to say that the service station is going to have a huge bill on its hands!
Filled diesel in a petrol car?
Firstly, diesel nozzles have a special lock on them and a sign that says 'Warning Diesel' but if you still proceed to pick up the nozzle you'll find that you're going to struggle to fit in the car because diesel nozzles are wider than petrol nozzles.
Once you've realized the mistake, stop pumping the fuel. If you've brimmed the tank with diesel then you will need to have it professionally drained but if you've only filled a little into an already half full petrol tank then brimming the tank with petrol should be alright but you do run the risk of lowering the octane of your car which means that the petrol will not ignite when it's supposed to.
Filled petrol in a diesel car?
Now this is rather problematic because diesel is a lubricant whereas petrol is not and the fact that petrol is a solvent means that it can do some serious damage to the pump and injectors in a diesel engine. Modern diesel engines operate under very high pressures and so any foreign substances can ruin your engine. If you have filled petrol in a diesel car, under any circumstances DO NOT start the engine, you run the risk of contaminating the fuel system. Have it drained immediately. What next? If you've got an old diesel car, just filling it up again with diesel and running it should do the trick, it's risky but not as risky as doing the same in a modern diesel where the consequences will be fatal.
Stop pumping as soon as you realize your mistake, don't start your engine and make sure to get your tank professionally drained before plotting your next move depending on how much you value your car.