Gas Versus Diesel

Cost

Due to the high compression ratios and resulting

high cylinder pressure in diesel engines, they

must be built to withstand a lot more punishment

than gas engines. The parts that are spruced up

include a thicker block and cylinder heads,

pistons, crankshaft, and valves, which can be

very costly indeed.

When it comes to the price, gas wins this one by

far. Diesel costs a lot more to own than gas,

which is one of the main reasons why people tend

to choose gas over diesel.

Fuel cost

Diesel fuel is easier to refine, taking less

time to get from raw petroleum to final product

from gas, giving it a lower price than that of

gas. On the other hand, within the United States,

diesel is priced the same or just a bit below

regular unleaded gas.

Noise and vibration

Despite many improvements in noise isolation and

engine noise technology in trucks over the last 10

years, diesels are still much louder and shake

more than gasoline powered vehicles. At idle, the

clatter and shake of diesel vehicles are clearly

noticeable, while it can be hard to tell if the

gas engine is even running.

Cold weather

If you’ve tried to start a diesel engine on a

cold day, you know that gas is by far easier to

start. Diesels don’t have spark plugs like gas engines

do, as the fuel is ignited once it’s injected into

the cylinder that is already under pressure.

When it gets cold, the air isn’t hot enough to

ignite the diesel fuel.

Maintenance

Maintenance on a diesel vehicle is more expensive,

thanks to many things including the larger volume

of oil in the engine and the fact that fuel filters

and water separators must be serviced more often

than gas vehicles. Gasoline engines have a bigger

advantage due to extended service periods on spark

plugs, engine oil, and even antifreeze.

Making that final choice between gas and diesel comes

down to what you’ll do with your vehicle and where

you live. If you use your vehicle for quick, fast

acceleration and rarely ever haul heavy loads, and

don’t plan to keep your vehicle past 100,000 miles,

you may want to consider buying a gasoline vehicle.

Gas runs smoother, fuel is easier to find, and

they are easier to start in cold weather. On the

other hand, if you plan to tow, value good fuel

economy and plan on racking up a lot of miles, then

you’ll want to buy a diesel.

Price is also an important consideration, as diesel

vehicles can be a bit more expensive than gas. If

you aren’t worried about price, then diesel may be

your best bet. For trucks, diesel is by far the

superior choice for those who like to haul heavy

loads on a frequent basis.

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