To optimize the performance of your car, you can add additives with special properties to your car fluids. But what are those? And when do you use them?
What is an additive?
In short, it is a liquid that you mix with the existing car fluids, such as fuel and engine oil. You do this, for example, to increase the life of your vehicle, to prevent repairs or to reduce your fuel consumption and emissions. The motor oil, petrol or diesel that you buy also always contains additives.
Are such additions necessary?
Opinions are divided about the usefulness and necessity of additives. Fuels have to meet high quality requirements, which in fact makes additives superfluous. However, if you use your car (or other vehicle) little or mainly make short trips with a low engine load, additives can help keep your engine and other parts clean. A dirty engine can lead to increased fuel consumption, unusual smoke development and reduced engine performance.
Good to know: if your car often stands still or is older than 10 years, it may be wiser to refuel (the slightly more expensive) E5 instead of E10.
What types of additives are there?
You can roughly divide the fuel additives into two categories: preventive and curative. Preventive additives are, as the name suggests, problem-preventing. They help keep the engine or cooling system healthy to avoid repairs in the future.
You use a curative additive if there is something wrong with your car. Because repairs often cost a lot of money, such a remedy can be an attractive option. Curative additives could, for example, help with a flooded particulate filter, leakage of engine parts and stuck valves. In this case, too, opinions differ on how it works.
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