The merits of converting a vehicle to operate on LPG – also called Autogas or Auto Gas – are affected by many variables, including the needs of the vehicle owner. The following provides auto gas info for some of the common questions that may assist you with your decision.
LPG Vehicle Scheme (Government Rebate)
The AusIndustry website has comprehensive information regarding the Government rebate scheme.
What are the advantages?
- The average yearly price of Autogas per litre is generally half.
- On most dual fuel conversions, the fuel range of the vehicle is increased, provided petrol and gas tanks are full.
- Gas burns cleaner than petrol, which in turn keeps the spark plugs and combustion chambers relatively free of carbon deposits.
- A reduction in engine wear in some areas is normally expected, particularly during cold starting because Autogas does not wash lubricating oil from the cylinder wall. However there can be accelerated wear in the valve seat area in some engines. Oil looks clean longer but don’t be misled by its condition – continue to change your oil at normal service schedule intervals.
- Fuel theft is reduced because Autogas is much more difficult to remove from the cylinder than it is to siphon petrol from a tank.
What are the disadvantages?
- The cost of installation has to be recovered before savings are made.
- On small cars and certain station wagons, the loss of luggage space due to cylinder size can be quite substantial, with the cylinder encroaching well into the luggage area.
- Other vehicles sometimes require relocation of the spare wheel due to the cylinder being fitted in the spare wheel carrier area underneath.
- Potential valve seat recession problems when used in some engines.
- Most engines suffer a slight loss of performance when converted to Autogas. This is mainly due to the compromises needed to use gas in an engine originally designed for petrol.
- Autogas conversions can use up to 30% more fuel, litre for litre, compared to petrol. Incorrect tuning can drastically increase consumption.
- Specialised technicians are recommended to carry out maintenance on Autogas installations, which may increase servicing costs of the Autogas system.
- When running problems become evident in the engine, the vehicle may need attention by a normal service centre and also by an Autogas technician.
- Cylinder inspection and testing is required after ten years. The expiry date is stamped onto the cylinder. This service averages around $250 to $550, which does not include the labour associated with the removal and replacement of the tank. These tests will determine the remaining life expectancy of the cylinder and related pressure control valves.
- Recent testing indicates Autogas fuelled vehicles have no cleaner exhaust emissions than late model petrol fuelled vehicles.
What will it cost me?
Installation costs are averaging around $2,500 to $4,500, depending on which style of system is fitted i.e. basic vapour mixer or sequential injection, respectively. Petrol on average is double the price of Autogas, however you generally use more litres of Autogas against litres of petrol. Car maintenance costs may be higher because a licensed installer or repairer must carry out servicing of the Autogas equipment.
Melbourne’s Auto gas experts
LPG Auto Power are Melbourne’s Auto Gas experts and are dedicated to providing an LP Gas Solution for you. Established in 1995, LPG Auto Power have been growing as a business ever since. Our team is made up of fully qualified technicians, no apprentices. This helps ensure that you receive the best in workmanship every time. We have proudly been named AAFRB’s single largest workshop in Victoria 2010.
Save money today!
By making the switch to LP Gas today, you are going to save thousands of dollars in the long term. When you choose LPG Auto Power to make your conversion, you will notice our prices are very reasonable and will be re-couped in savings within a short period of time. With LPG prices around half the price of petrol, now is the time to make the switch. Call on the LP Gas experts today.