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The Hidden Costs of Putting Petrol in Your Diesel Tank

The Hidden Costs of Putting Petrol in Your Diesel Tank
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The Hidden Costs of Putting Petrol in Your Diesel Tank


The immediate and direct costs of misfuelling range from 150 to 400 and are well documented but can be a small price compared with some of the hidden costs.

How much is your time worth?

There are times when you simply cannot afford to not be somewhere at a specified time, whether it is a business appointment, a family engagement or even a first date. What is the cost to you of missing one or more of those? This isn't just simple inconvenience; it is letting people down and, as such, reflects badly on one's reliability.
The Hidden Costs of Putting Petrol in Your Diesel Tank
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Who has ever got a couple or more hours to spare? You are in your car because you were on your way somewhere. The car rental comparison site carrental.co.uk costed the time that can be lost:

Typical estimate of cost of repair - 5,350 - (costs range from around 300 for a fuel drain, to over 12,000 if the car is driven causing serious damage)

Time to organise/manage repair, eg organising garage, chasing up insurance company, checking on progress - 218.38 (based on an average hourly wage of 13.37 - source: Office for National Statistics - and approximately 16 hours and 20 minutes to organise repair)

Re-organise/cancel business appointments - 100.28 (based on seven and a half hours)

Time and effort involved in changing personal arrangements - 40.11 (based on three hours)

Organise car rental for typical two weeks - approx 250 (based on Compact category car in London)

Sundries, eg phone calls to garage and insurance company, wasted fuel etc - estimated at approximately 60

Insurance premium increase - average of 10% increase a year (source - British Insurance Premium Index). Current average cost of comprehensive insurance 629.04 (source - AA Index). A 10% increase would take it to 691.95

Insurance and warranty

BIBA (British Insurance Brokers Association) has stated that a third of drivers are not covered for misfuelling by their insurance policy and the policies of a further third of drivers are silent on whether they would pay or not. It is possible to obtain specific insurance cover against misfuelling but it only covers the vehicle and not the individual. These policies typically cover recovery, fuel drain and 10 litres of fuel. No insurance policies cover any downstream costs where the vehicle experiences serious problems at a later date arising from the original misfuelling. Then of course, should you be able to make a claim, you will risk losing your No Claims Bonus.

Vehicle manufacturers' warranties are also silent on whether you are covered and could make a claim. They would certainly not cover a fuel drain, and would almost certainly not cover downstream problems since they are likely to fall outside most warranty periods and are probably not claimable anyway.

Second hand vehicle values

People are increasingly asking about misfuelling incidents when buying a used car. Files of receipts tell the story. Concerns about prior misfuelling are now beginning to depress the second hand value of diesel vehicles, even if your vehicle hasn't been misfuelled.

Protection by prevention
The Hidden Costs of Putting Petrol in Your Diesel Tank
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It is now possible to protect and insure yourself against all of the risks set out in this article for a cost effective one-time payment. There are a number of retrofit misfuelling prevention devices available on the market several of which make it physically impossible to misfuel a diesel tank once fitted.

However, fitting aftermarket fuel caps to your fuel tank should not be a decision made without proper research. There is one stand-out retrofit misfuelling prevention device that has passed all of the required safety tests by MIRA and received the coveted Thatcham Accreditation as well as a VCA Certificate - the Diesel Key. No other product has proven its ability to meet these stringent test criteria. The Diesel Key is quick and easy to fit and has been designed to fit 90% of modern diesel vehicles giving the user the necessary safety assurances in the process. This is why the Diesel Key has quickly become the misfuelling prevention device of choice by leasing companies, fleet managers and the UK emergency services.





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