There are beliefs about cars that have been handed down from generation to generation. With the power of the internet, and Hollywood special effects, some of these beliefs have become even more prevalent. You’ve probably heard of these myths, and you might even believe in some of them. Here at Carsome.my, we break them down so you’ll be fooled no longer.
1. Overdrive Will Boost Your Car
You’ve probably seen this one in the movies. When the main character starts screaming for the car to go into overdrive before flying off a ramp in clouds of dust and grime. The thing is, that’s not how that little button on the gear of your car works. In the automotive world, to go into overdrive means your gear ratio goes higher than 1:1.
I’m going into overdrive!!!
While you may think that it gives you the power of a Bugatti Veyron, it only means that your car’s speed can be maintained with a minimum engine effort and wear after a certain speed. It’s similar to adding another gear to your car. So if you were to go into overdrive, you would actually be maintaining your speed, or getting your engine to relax a little. Not pumping it up for overtaking. So it might sound a little silly when you exclaim that you’re going into overdrive, expecting your car to fly forward.
2. Cell Phones at Petrol Stations Will Cause Fire
We’ve always been taught to believe that even pulling out our cell phones in a petrol station will cause everything to go up in a massive ball of flame. This myth has been passed around through emails and internet articles since 1999. It’s often followed by a news piece where someone gets burned by using a cell phone while refueling. The common story is that cell phones are able to send electromagnetic waves strong enough to set the fuel vapor around petrol stations on fire. It’s become a common enough story that petrol stations in Malaysia and Australia have warning stickers that tell you to turn off your phone while refueling.
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However, the fact is there is nothing to prove that cell phones can cause a fire. There have been no instances where using a cell phone has set off a fire, as mentioned by Snopes.com, and experimented on by the Mythbusters. When the fire did break out at petrol stations, they were more likely to be caused by other environmental factors, including static electricity.
3. Crashing Your Car Will Cause It to Explode
In every action movie, you know what’s going to happen when you crash into something at high speeds. That’s right. Explosions. The hero slams into his accelerator, revving his car up at the target, and jumping out at the right moment. He walks away coolly from the explosion, without ever looking back. Because cool guys don’t look at explosions.
See? We told you cool guys don’t look at explosions.
In all seriousness, though, a crashing car doesn’t really explode, even when falling off a cliff. While the crash may be hard enough to fatally crush you, you’ll be glad to know that you won’t be dying in an explosion. It turns out that a car doesn’t explode easily, even after falling off a cliff. The Mythbusters (again) tested this one and found that the car would only explode if the gas tank was crushed directly without the car body, and exposed to sparks. Cars do sometimes catch fire when there’s a spark and leakage of fuel. But if your car’s in tip top condition when you crash, you’d only need to worry about being crushed between large chunks of metal.
4. Premium Fuel Saves Fuel
We often believe the finer things in life come with a higher price tag. In the same way, most of us believe that the more expensive the fuel, the better the quality of fuel you’ll get for your car. However, that is not the case. Unless your car specifically requires a high octane fuel to run, you’ll do just fine with your regular, lower octane fuel. Premium fuel (Ron97 in Malaysia) is more expensive because it contains a higher percentage of octane.
Tell my driver to pump only premium fuel.
In simple terms, it means that it can be compressed to a higher degree without self-igniting. In high-performance engines, this is important as the temperature is likely to rise quickly. The higher temperatures may lead to the gas igniting in the pistons before the spark plug fires. This, in turn, pushes back the piston and causes knocking. However, for most cars with engine capacities under 2,400cc, the fuel doesn’t make much difference. In fact, some “premium fuel recommended” cars will do just fine with regular fuel. While you may believe it gives your car better power, there is no noticeable difference in acceleration or fuel economy. The way a car handle relies mostly on the driver. It is only when you have a “premium fuel required” car that the fuel really makes a difference.
5. Your Car Needs A Warm Up
In the colder countries, winter can be a pain to drive in. The snow blankets the roads, the visibility is poor, and your car is frozen before you even start your car. That’s why you may notice that some people prefer to let their car stay idle for a while, to warm it up. There are some who do this even in a country like Malaysia, where the weather consists of only sun and rain. However, it’s a waste of time.
While we humans need a little time to get our engines going, the modern car doesn’t really need a warm up. Through modern fuel injections, your car is ready to go as soon as you start it up. No need to wait for it to reach an optimum temperature. In fact, you can take it out for a drive to warm it up, instead of leaving it in an inefficient, fuel consuming idle mode.&
Some car myths are pretty believable, but some are just plain misleading. With the truth exposed behind these myths, you can now correct your friends when they tell you a myth about your car. Want to learn more about the world of automobiles? Follow Carsome.my, where we bring you tips, facts and more on everything about cars.
Myths and facts can be difficult to distinguish, especially when there’s so much information on the internet. Want to find out more about your car and how it works? Read about fuel-saving myths here.
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Original article here.
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