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After starting my car (2006 Honda Accord) in the cold weather, my car doesn’t run as smoothly as usual. My neighbor said that my fuel injector could be dirty because I use Kroger gas 99% of the time. He said I should fill my gas tank with premium fuel from Shell or another name brand gas station every once in a while, especially on long trips, to help clean the fuel injector. I did fill up with premium before going out of town for Christmas and my car does seem to run more smoothly. I’m I just imagining this or could he be making a good point?

When you say “preminum” do you mean “quality” as in a Top Tier fuel or “preminum” as in highest octane?

I think he meant high octane and from a better fuel station.

Higher octane than your owner’s manual suggests will do nothing.

Top tier fuel (NOT higher octane) from any reputable supplier will have injector cleaner.

It’s possible. If I had that problem, I’d put a bottle of Techron in the tank. I also use Top Tier gas, (QT, it’s also about the cheapest in my area). No need for premium.

Well he is mistaken if he thinks higher octane than required will get him anywhere,I was giving him the benifit of the doubt.

If I suspected that I had injectors that needed cleaning, I would likely try a bottle of injector cleaner added to the fuel as directed on the bottle (after verifying that the manufacturer of my car did not warn against using the stuff - see owner’s manual). I would also expect that it would not fix anything.

Injectors very seldom need cleaning today. All modern fuel including Kroger and the no name brands have at least the government specified levels of cleaner and that almost always is sufficient. Most of the time it turns out to be something else, like old plug wires, partly clogged fuel or air filter etc.

so why does the car seem to run so much smoother?

Keep away from the cheapo brands and use the recommended octane.

Not being “smart” but most likely it is the “placebo” effect.This is a real situation,you want it to work,you pay the money,so you “feel” it works.

Your neighbor is right, the fuel filter, and air filter, should be changed.
Check the coolant temperature sensor (voltage and ohms).

It has been my experience–over a period of 45 years or so–that when somebody knows nothing about cars they have two stock answers for any car problem. One of those suggestions is, “it’s probably your battery”, and the other is “put premium gas in it”. I am going to guess that your well-meaning neighbor is not knowledgeable about cars, simply because his suggestion has little or no validity.

As was said, higher octane does not resolve engine problems unless you were previously using gas of too low an octane. Since–to my knowledge–all Accords require merely regular grade gas, any perceived improvement from the use of premium gas is either coincidental or is an example of “the placebo effect”

However, since Shell is one of the few brands of gas (all of its octane levels) that meets the Top Tier gas standards, it does have a higher level of engine-cleaning detergents than non-Top Tier gas brands. But, even with that higher level of detergents (assuming that you did use Shell or one of the other Top Tier brands), using just a few gallons is not likely to suddenly clear a badly fowled injector.

If you suspect that your injectors are dirty, begin with a bottle of Techron in a full tank of gas, run that tank down to the 1/4 mark on the gauge, and follow this with a few tankfuls of regular gas from a Top Tier retailer. If the problem really is dirty injectors, this will likely resolve the problem.

Kroger gas uses a lot of celery juice which causes freezing. The big problem is figuring out what they use when celery juice isn’t available. It could be anything. Your neighbor is OK. Many of us have been Chevroned like that over the years. You can always try a different brand like Mobil, Exxon or Chevron which seems to be a company that is really proud of its own product. You could also avoid those gasolines that say 10 percent ethanol. The price of gasoline should be a non-factor right now.

Kroger probably uses the same depots that supply Exxon, BP, Shell and the others. Open up the air filter and see if it is dirty. You will need to pull the filter out of the box and flex it a little to see between the fins. If only the tips are dirty, then reuse it.

X2 for the placebo effect. I use Kroger gas in all my cars- old Jeeps, new Mercedes E350, and a motorcycle. Have for years. As others mention, it’s probably something else.

What does your vehicle recommend using in it when you fill up? Does it say 87 is required, 91 is recommended, or 91 is required?

Yes, what does your vehicle recommend?
And when it talks to you about its octane preferences, does it have a Japanese accent?


I’m sorry. The devil made me do it.

Most likely an Ohio accent, since some Accords are built in Marysville

Nevertheless, the idea of a talking car is disturbing–whether from a bad '60s sitcom or from a 2006 Accord. Luckily, my car does not discuss octane or other matters with me.


I dunno, KITT(the TransAM) was kinda cool :stuck_out_tongue: