‘Very dangerous’: Drivers warned of new E10 fuel causing issues with flashing petrol light

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The new standard of unleaded petrol has led to vehicle problems for drivers, from a “sputtering” engine to a decrease in their fuel efficiency. When it was launched onto forecourts on September 1, the Government said it would marginally impact fuel economy – generally around one percent.

Despite this, Express reader Ray Forsyth, said he had experienced issues relating to their use of E10 petrol.

They said: “Put E10 fuel in my car and two weeks later, engine light comes on.

“Fuel trim in the data sitting at around 35 percent (also various seals have gone etc).

“Without repairing anything, put the Tesco higher octane fuel in (which is still E5) and fuel trim drops to 20 percent!

“Which is too low to bring the engine light on (but still too high due to PCV valve failure).

“Just goes to show what that s*** it is doing to engines!”

Motorists who see their petrol light flashing even when they have a full tank are advised to get it checked at a garage.

Although the problem can often appear to be a quick fix, experiences where the light has been misleading to the amount of petrol actually in the tank can leave motorists feeling unsettled about the accuracy of their car’s alerts.

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There is a mechanism called a fuel level sensor which measures the level of fuel within the tank and is made up of a float switch, variable resistor and a wiper.

When a vehicle’s fuel level changes, the wiper moves across the variable resistance with a metal connecting rod, causing the measure of voltage to change.

When the fuel tank is empty, the wiper points to high resistance and vice versa, this is the formula on which the fuel gauge is measured and recorded.

The problem which may cause the petrol light to flash before the fuel tank is actually low is related to the fuel level sensor.

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