It’s the third most popular automotive fuel in the world. Autogas, also known as LPG, AutoLPG, Propane, or GLP (in Spain), may be your answer to the increased excise taxes that you’ll be starting to pay for this year. LPG fuel costs almost half the price of petrol per liter, and is clean-burning and friendlier to the environment as well.
This type of fuel is mostly used in Turkey, Australia, South Korea, Poland, and Italy. And it’s often used by the British Monarch for their fleet of cars (they say Buckingham Palace has its own LPG pump).
What’s more, it’s a common fixture among taxi drivers in the Philippines, and especially in Japan.
How Does It Work?
A car that’s converted to run on LPG (Liquified Petroleum Gas) involves installing an LPG fuel tank inside. It works by having two fuel systems: an LPG gas fuel tank and a normal petrol tank that can be used interchangeably just by flicking a switch. So in case you run out of LPG gas, then your car switches back to petrol (or vice versa) without any problems.
Advantages of LPG Gas
You save money in the long run
You can really save up on fuel when you use LPG—around 40 to even 50 percent. This will save you a lot on fuel expenses. And with the excise taxes just around the corner, scrimping on fuel can go a long way to keeping a tight rein on your budget.
To give you an idea of how much it will save you, look at the prices of different fuels today and what they would be with taxes included:
Note that Auto LPG costs less compared to other types of fuel–and that’s even with the added Excise and VAT taxes. So you get to save around P11.88 (compared to diesel) and P21.81 (compared to gasoline) when you buy one liter of LPG gas.
Autogas is actually good for taxis, or for those vehicles that cover more than 12,000+ miles each year. It can also be good for vehicles that consume a lot of gas, such as SUVs. And it would only take as little as a year or two to pay back your installation cost.
Disadvantages of LPG Gas
You will need to spend a lot initially
Converting your car to be LPG-friendly can be costly at first, since it will require some major work on your car. Not only will it involve getting a second fuel tank for your car, it will also require a new line to take the fuel to the car’s engine.
Typically, this can range from P40,000 to P80,000 for cars, while SUVs can go for as high as P60,000 to P100,000.
It can lessen interior space
The disadvantage here is that you might lose a bit of boot space in your car, since that’s where the other tank typically goes. What’s more, your car will get heavier and may add to your fuel consumption.
It can affect your insurance premiums
Some insurance companies might also require you to pay for higher premiums for your car, since it has been modified from its original condition. Not all do, but still, it’s best to ask your insurance company just to be sure.
There might be a lack of service or maintenance centers
LPG Gas isn’t a mainstream product, so the demand for service centers that cater to these fuel types are quite lacking. Don’t let this discourage you, though. It won’t require too much of your time once it’s properly installed. You only need to check for occasional leaks to make sure everything is working properly.
Autogas once had a bad reputation when it came to vehicle performance. It was once notorious for giving less power in a car, and would require more to keep a car moving. Still, technology has made regular gasoline-powered and converted LPG vehicles almost the same when it comes to performance. This is particularly true if you optimize your car’s engine regularly.
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