Author Topic: TOP TIER fuel  (Read 710 times)

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Offline Steve in Sunny Fla

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TOP TIER fuel
« on: January 03, 2019, 04:02:44 pm »
TOP TIER GASOLINE.

I am fortunate in that I get to speak with motorcycle enthusiasts every day. I have found during many conversations that most owners don't know what TOP TIER fuel is. They generally mistake this designation as meaning "premium" or "high octane" fuel. which is not the case.

Back in the 70's BMW started evaluating pump gas for it's cleanliness and ability to keep an engines' components clean. They would weigh valves and pistons, CC combustion chambers and ports, and then run the engine for a cycle of 50,000 miles. They would then disassemble the engine, re-weigh and re-cc the components, and determine how much build up occurred from various fuels. At that time, they designated fuel as "50,000 mile" or "unlimited mileage" quality. "Unlimited mileage" produces the minimum amount of power robbing deposits in the engine, and signified the best quality fuel from an engine cleanliness / deposit standpoint.

This test has now morphed into TOP TIER fuel designations.

If you notice, there was NOTHING about octane value mentioned. Octane value is completely independent of TOP TIER criteria. In fact, for a fuel retailer to comply with TOP TIER criteria, ALL of their fuel grades must be compliant.

You may ask why this is important to you. Simple... all of today's vehicles are fuel injected, and as a starting point they rely on clean injectors to provide peak performance. Of course buildup on any of the other engine parts will lessen performance and economy as well, but injectors are a "right now" loss of performance when their spray patterns become compromised.

I'm going to link to the TOP TIER website, and you can search for the brands that are close to you that have the TOP TIER designation. If you aren't running TOP TIER fuel now... fix that. It matters.

Steve

https://toptiergas.com/
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Offline oldnslo_MO

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2019, 05:31:40 pm »
thx for info... :)
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2019, 06:19:18 pm »
jeepers Steve.... thanks a bunch, now I have to figure out if my favorite 100% gasoline place I've been going to, is top tier....
 :??: :??:

http://www.chardonoil.com/gas-station-chardon-oil-company.html

I filled my recently resurrected Dodge truck with it, and just today, filled my 'ailing' GMC (that has been plagued by water laden fuels from "top tier" local stations..going back almost 5 years now)
and both seem to be running fantastic...I know it's not octane related, but both places 100% gasoline pumps are 90-93 octane. I used 90, and it was $2.99 a gallon; based on the fluctuations I've seen and paid for over the last 5 years, that seems pretty good for 'real' gasoline.

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Offline Sailor Rich

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2019, 06:38:35 pm »
Hope the New Year is treating you Well Steve!
I question the fuel quality I have been using after last summers engine issues. The result of #2 dropping to 125psi
ended up being heavily carboned exhaust valves. Not knowing what else would have contributed to this a bad injector maybe? All I know is a good valve cleaning, new head gasket put the power back and solved the vibration and noise. Next motor swap will be alot bit quicker.

Offline TimR

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2019, 06:45:49 pm »
Interesting. I noticed there were some brands listed as Top Tier that will not put in my motorcycle fuel injected or not. I have a tough time putting Arco in any gas tank I own unless I'm desperate and have no other choice for instance.  It turns out the gas brands I typically use are listed as Top Tier. My only wish is I wish there were more alcohol free stations. And as always great info Steve.  :)
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Offline Steve in Sunny Fla

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2019, 07:46:52 pm »
Hope the New Year is treating you Well Steve!
I question the fuel quality I have been using after last summers engine issues. The result of #2 dropping to 125psi
ended up being heavily carboned exhaust valves. Not knowing what else would have contributed to this a bad injector maybe? All I know is a good valve cleaning, new head gasket put the power back and solved the vibration and noise. Next motor swap will be alot bit quicker.

  Hey Rich, I heard you had a tough go of it  >:(  . I'm sure the new bike will make up for it, no need to test your engine swapping abilities.
 Steve
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Offline works4me

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2019, 08:25:05 pm »
None of the stations near me are listed.
i.e. Snappys, Rutters, Get Go, Sheetz, etc.
Guess I’m doomed.

Offline Sailor Rich

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2019, 09:00:17 pm »


  Hey Rich, I heard you had a tough go of it  >:(  . I'm sure the new bike will make up for it, no need to test your engine swapping abilities.
 Steve
[/quote]

Oh I hope not again. Lucky I have good people to guide me.

Offline Staylo

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2019, 09:58:12 pm »
Interesting. I noticed there were some brands listed as Top Tier that will not put in my motorcycle fuel injected or not. I have a tough time putting Arco in any gas tank I own unless I'm desperate and have no other choice for instance.  It turns out the gas brands I typically use are listed as Top Tier. My only wish is I wish there were more alcohol free stations. And as always great info Steve.  :)
I was under the impression that almost nobody sells 'their own' fuel anymore.  They simply 'deposit' X gallons of base stock gasoline into one end of the pipeline, and then 'withdraw' X gallons of base stock gasoline at the other end, and then add their additive packages.  In other words, the additive package each brand uses is the only difference because they're all using the same base stock gasoline.  If that's correct, then 'brand' is almost irrelevant for Top Tier fuels, as far as quality goes, because they're all adhering to the 'standard' in regards to additive packages to get the TT label.  Of course, other factors would apply, like how often do they turn their stock over, etc.  If I'm misinformed regarding everyone using the same base stock gasoline, please correct me.
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Offline Staylo

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2019, 09:58:58 pm »
Costco gas, is Top Tier, BTW.
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Offline Tundra

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2019, 10:17:26 pm »
I'm using it now Steve, Chevron station right around the corner from me. I was misinformed and was paying dearly for the last 10 years using non-ethanol in everything, cars, bikes, mower, yard equipment. I guess that's more important for the carbureted engines.
  I'll actually be saving money now, as it's less than the non-ethanol fuel.

Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2019, 10:35:01 pm »
None of the stations near me are listed.
i.e. Snappys, Rutters, Get Go, Sheetz, etc.
Guess I’m doomed.

meh.... I wouldn't sweat it....

Both  Sunoco, and Valero are noted....
and Sunoco pumped my tank full of water, so I went to Valero, and they did the same...between the 2 of them there was over a gallon in my 30 gallon fuel tank, and I'm still trying to rid it.
when you have to take a hairdryer to your fuel filter, to thaw it out... you know you have problems. And try and get them to cover the repair/replacement/ of the aftermath... like repeated fuel filter changes at $15 a pop, along with over $200 in IsoHeet over a 3 year period...(as you can't siphon fuel from modern vehicles anymore, thanks to the restrictors and baffles in the fill line... and even if you could siphon it... try to find somewhere to dispose of it... other than standing in the back yard, and tossing it in the bonfire a cup at a time...
literally there is absolutely no place in Ohio, that will accept "bad fuel" to recycle or dispose of it... unless you "purchase" a 20/40/50 gallon new barrel, from them, and pay them for the barrel, and to pick it up... disposing of 15 gallons of old phase separated/contaminated fuel from my old truck, would have cost me over $300 to "dispose of"

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Offline works4me

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2019, 11:07:02 pm »
“meh.... I wouldn't sweat it....”

Trust me, I don’t.
My post was largely tongue-in-cheek.

I’ve got more important things to worry about.

Offline bajasam

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2019, 02:12:34 am »

I was under the impression that almost nobody sells 'their own' fuel anymore.  They simply 'deposit' X gallons of base stock gasoline into one end of the pipeline, and then 'withdraw' X gallons of base stock gasoline at the other end, and then add their additive packages.  In other words, the additive package each brand uses is the only difference because they're all using the same base stock gasoline.  If that's correct, then 'brand' is almost irrelevant for Top Tier fuels, as far as quality goes, because they're all adhering to the 'standard' in regards to additive packages to get the TT label.  Of course, other factors would apply, like how often do they turn their stock over, etc.  If I'm misinformed regarding everyone using the same base stock gasoline, please correct me.
thats the way it is in southern new mexico and southern az. all gasoline and diesel all comes in the same two pipelines from the same oil refinery in el paso .when it gets to tucson its fed to all the different fuel wholesalers who add the retailers proprietary additives when its loaded into the 9000gal tanker truck.chevron,shell,texaco,7-11, it dont matter its all the same gasoline.

Offline cuda

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2019, 07:54:26 am »
[ standing in the backyard, and tossing it in the bonfire a cup at a time...
literally there is absolutely no place in Ohio, that will accept "bad fuel" to recycle or dispose of it... unless you "purchase" a 20/40/50 gallon new barrel, from them, and pay them for the barrel, and to pick it up... disposing of 15 gallons of old phase separated/contaminated fuel from my old truck, would have cost me over $300 to "dispose of"
[/quote]

Never a good idea to through gas on a fire, unless you want to die...

Water is heavier than gas and will settle to the bottom,  I use 5 gals (race gas containers from Rural King) just pour in gas let it settle, pour off the top gas. https://www.ruralking.com/5-gallon-polyethylene-fluid-container-white
https://www.livescience.com/58117-does-gasoline-go-bad.html
« Last Edit: January 04, 2019, 08:09:06 am by cuda »
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Offline Tundra

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #15 on: January 04, 2019, 10:35:08 am »

I was under the impression that almost nobody sells 'their own' fuel anymore.  They simply 'deposit' X gallons of base stock gasoline into one end of the pipeline, and then 'withdraw' X gallons of base stock gasoline at the other end, and then add their additive packages.  In other words, the additive package each brand uses is the only difference because they're all using the same base stock gasoline.  If that's correct, then 'brand' is almost irrelevant for Top Tier fuels, as far as quality goes, because they're all adhering to the 'standard' in regards to additive packages to get the TT label.  Of course, other factors would apply, like how often do they turn their stock over, etc.  If I'm misinformed regarding everyone using the same base stock gasoline, please correct me.
thats the way it is in southern new mexico and southern az. all gasoline and diesel all comes in the same two pipelines from the same oil refinery in el paso .when it gets to tucson its fed to all the different fuel wholesalers who add the retailers proprietary additives when its loaded into the 9000gal tanker truck.chevron,shell,texaco,7-11, it dont matter its all the same gasoline.

Correct...The additives are added at the Port when the fuel is loaded into the Tanker Truck. Also important is to choose high volume selling gasoline stations and the newer the better. Old mom and pop places generally have more water in the tanks from condensation and sitting less than full for longer periods of time. Newer double walled tanks have much less water (actually inches less) and sludge, contaminants in the fuel. You can also buy your own detergent additives for your internal engine parts.
One more tip...for those that may care, never buy fuel from a station when you see a tank truck off loading fuel. That volume of gravity fed fuel filling the in ground tank stirs up all the crap and water that settles to the bottom of the tank, if you absolutely must ask the driver what he's currently dropping (reg. mid grade, premium etc...) and just don't use what he's dropping.

Offline cuda

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #16 on: January 04, 2019, 11:10:54 am »
What he said above, I was 16 years old pumping gas and the fuel truck filled up a low tank, the next day a regular customer came in with a jar full of water,  said I pumped the day before. :o

We would dip the tanks with a stick to check the amount there., but never checked for water. 
« Last Edit: January 04, 2019, 11:14:28 am by cuda »
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Online Jorge

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #17 on: January 05, 2019, 01:40:32 pm »
You'd think that water checks would be easy to do.
Water is heavier than fuel, so it goes to the bottom.
Fuel and water are VERY different in how they react or attach to materials, you'd think there would be a special "dipstick" that would be able to check both levels at the same time.
Apparently, there is not enough liability for stations to protect us from this.

Offline Jim

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #18 on: January 05, 2019, 02:32:02 pm »
You'd think that water checks would be easy to do.
Water is heavier than fuel, so it goes to the bottom.
Fuel and water are VERY different in how they react or attach to materials, you'd think there would be a special "dipstick" that would be able to check both levels at the same time.
Apparently, there is not enough liability for stations to protect us from this.

They make a paste type material that's smeared onto a gauge pole or tape that changes color when it touches water. It's not expensive and it's easy to use. The product indicator paste washes off leaving behind a clear cut line indicating where the product level is. I used this stuff for years when I worked in a refinery.

Offline RWulf

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #19 on: January 05, 2019, 03:12:21 pm »
Jim your right. I used it checking fuel tanks at remote sites.
I have search my memory banks and can't remember the name
of the stuff.

Offline Tundra

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #20 on: January 05, 2019, 03:27:23 pm »
You'd think that water checks would be easy to do.
Water is heavier than fuel, so it goes to the bottom.
Fuel and water are VERY different in how they react or attach to materials, you'd think there would be a special "dipstick" that would be able to check both levels at the same time.
Apparently, there is not enough liability for stations to protect us from this.

They make a paste type material that's smeared onto a gauge pole or tape that changes color when it touches water. It's not expensive and it's easy to use. The product indicator paste washes off leaving behind a clear cut line indicating where the product level is. I used this stuff for years when I worked in a refinery.

Both correct, and very easy to do.
The station attendant is supposed to stick the tanks prior to ordering fuel to assure what is ordered will fit in the tank, many times they will order early assuming how much they will use prior to it's arrival. The tanker driver also should stick the tank prior to dropping fuel for the same reasons. I've seen fuel bubbling up out of the ground and the vapor vent tubes because the driver did not stick tanks verifying quantity in the tank prior to dropping. I'm not for sure if there is a requirement to check for water level, although easy to do when the tanks are already being sticked by different people throughout the fuel ordering/delivery process. If there is a requirement, it's certainly not enforced and most don't think or care about it until it hits home. The fuel company does not care they just want to dump as much fuel as possible and move on. I imagine the tanks contents and integrity would fall on the station owner?

Offline ron203

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #21 on: January 05, 2019, 03:43:26 pm »
There's a big pipeline that cuts across the SE to Atlanta and ends at a distribution terminal on Bolton Rd. I think it brings all the gas, or most of it, to the SE U.S. You can imagine how much that might be if you think about Atlanta traffic. When I worked for BP in retail store ops in the mid - 80's, I'd go to that terminal occasionally for other product, or swag, and saw all brands (and independent haulers) lined up to fill and haul all over the city. All of the gas in Atlanta  comes in there (or did at that time). Techron was "new" at the time and BP, Chevron, and Amoco were touting the BMW study. I was told the Techron was added by the different companies at the terminal to their specs. Was also told that while all grades (in what are now "top tier" brands) had it to some degree, Chevron Premium and Amoco (then still a stand-alone company) premium had it in the highest concentrations. You could literally smell the difference in the these two and the rest. At that time, the independents bought gas inventory on the spot market on price alone and so might or might not have stumbled across gas with Techron. I guess some of the big ones like QT, specify it now  or something. I've wondered about that. I will buy at an independent if necessary, but much prefer the QT's of the world.

About the water: Our (BP station) procedure was SUPPOSED to be, "stick the tank with the paste each day to check for water when you verify the gas levels and  ALWAYS DO IT immediately after a gas drop, but...one day, we had a truck that had gotten steam cleaned (I was told it had hauled something else earlier) and they failed to drain it before it went to the terminal to pick up a gas load. The guy dropped 10,000 gallons of mostly water at one station in Atlanta.  The dealer guy (this was not a company store) didn't stick the tank after the drop. OOPS doesn't begin to cover it. This was a very busy station with lots of traffic. We had cars pulled over for several miles with stalls after fill ups of water. Must have had 5-6 before it was discovered and shut down. What a mess.
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Offline IBAJIM

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Re: TOP TIER fuel
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2019, 12:34:16 am »
I know a guy that delivered gas to the gas stations.  He claims all the different brand names of gas comes out of the same big tanks at the tank farm.  But then different additive packages are added for whatever brand station the gas is to be delivered to.

He also said he would put paste on the long stick to check to see if the tank at the station had any water at the bottom to protect his company from being accused of dumping water into the tank.

Ever see a gas pump that is running really, really slow ?  It's usually not because the pump is bad.  It's because there is a "water detection" filter that intentionally clogs up ( by design ) when water is present.  It's a last chance water detector.  Don't use one of those pumps !

FYI :  https://www.cim-tek.com/index.php/petroleum/dispenser-filters
« Last Edit: January 06, 2019, 12:40:23 am by IBAJIM »