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  1. #1
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    Default What octane should you use in your bike

    I have seen a lot of wrong information on what octane we should be using in our spyders and also people using higher or lower octane than what they are suppose to be using per the manufacture spec's so here is a web site to go to and find out the truth about it. https://www.meineke.com/blog/using-p...ly-save-money/. Hope this helps

  2. #2
    Very Active Member trikermutha's Avatar
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    87 or above for me works

  3. #3
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    In Germany we have petrol with the following octane numbers (AON = Average Octane Number): Type "Super" with 90 and "SuperPlus" with 93. Spyder riders refuel "Super". Before 2011 we still had "regular petrol" at 87, but this no longer exists today.

  4. #4
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    I use premium gas only. The thing I have is I get my gas from Costco which has a savings of usually 15 to 30 cents a gallon or more. Around me Bj's and Sams also hold to almost the same price as Costco. This is more of a fyi as to where to get gas if you have the possibilty to do so in your area.
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  5. #5
    Very Active Member AY4B's Avatar
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    Premium around here is 93 octane. I use premium unless I can get by Buc-ee's and get their ethanol free regular that is 92 octane. It is priced just a couple of pennies more than their mid grade.
    2017 F3 Limited

  6. #6
    Very Active Member JayBros's Avatar
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    For those who believe BRP and other vehicle manufacturers are in cahoots with big oil, use whatever floats your boat. Until I accumulate enough scientific information that makes me smarter than the engineers who designed the Spyder engines I'll use what they recommend. And no, when on tour and I have been unable to get anything but 87 I can't tell any difference in the way the engine runs or the mileage I get, but that's an unusual, not routine situation. If I couldn't afford the recommended fuel, I wouldn't have bought the Spyder.
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  7. #7
    aka: akspyderman ARtraveler's Avatar
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    The information will be all over the place.

    Early Spyders said to use at least 90 octane. For years, I did. Paid 30 - 40 cents per gallon higher for the higher octane.

    Bottom line now, for the last THREE years I have been using 87 octane in all my vehicles. Car, Kawasaki, and two Spyders. I do not notice any lack of performance in either Spyder. I believe the computer compensates.

    I may not be perfectly right...but it is working for me. And now, I am using the 10% ethanol that is common here in AR. Still no difference, IMO.

    Currently Owned: 2019 F3 Limited, 2014 RTS-SE6 (yellow), 2015 Vulcan 900 LTD

    Previously : 2008 GS-SM5 (silver), 2009 RS-SE5 (red), 2010 RT-S Premier Editon #474 (black) 2011 RT A&C SE5 (magnesium). 6 Spyders, 11 years, 152,900 miles


  8. #8
    Member glorybiz's Avatar
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    I have always used 93 octane in all my motorcycles and lawn equipment as I never wanted to have a fuel issue with them sitting over the winter

  9. #9
    Very Active Member Chupaca's Avatar
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    Default Well....

    Nothing lower than 87.... I run higher but mostly for the additives the price difference is minimal. We have designer fuels.... summer blends, spring, fall and winter along with weekend special blends.. gotta love this state....
    Gene and Ilana De Laney
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    ​2012 RS sm5

  10. #10
    Very Active Member Lew L's Avatar
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    92 or 93 octane here. The 1330 motor is a high compression piece. THe Hemi in my Magnum calles for mid grade----- Seat of the pants says I get a little more thrust with a higher grade. Gas points at Smiths markets really help drop the price. I have the stage 1 ECU flash on the ( AND LOVE IT ). I believe the ignition timing is adjusted and having 93 octane is right.

    Lew L
    Kaos----- Gone but not forgotten.

    2014 RTS in circuit yellow, farkeling addiction down to once every few months.ECU FLASH IS GREAT.

  11. #11
    Active Member campermac's Avatar
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    I run 87 BUT it is non ethanol 87 which is a huge difference. Cost a little bit more but well worth it if you can find it.
    If I am on the road on a ride or trip I use 90 or higher.
    Never had a knock or a ping, and really don't care about fuel mileage, that is the last thing on my mind

  12. #12
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    I use a mid grade 89 when gas prices skyrocket. I also used 93 and switched to 89 and saw no big difference in performance.

  13. #13
    SpyderLovers Sponsor BajaRon's Avatar
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    I think one issue in this discussion is that some seem to feel that 'Minimum' and 'Optimal' are the same thing. Don't get hung up on the word 'Recommended' without considering the context. For example. A doctor may 'Recommend' that you not eat or drink more than 3 servings of a certain food type or beverage each week. When, in reality, not eating or drinking these things at all would be optimal.

    Used to be vehicles gave optimum fuel octane recommendations for a particular application. However, things have changed now that everything is computer controlled. These days you will rarely see an 'Optimum' octane recommendation. Instead, manufacturer's give 'Minimum' octane requirements. But minimum means exactly that.

    What the manufacturer is describing is the computers lower limit of ability to compensate for less than optimal octane values. If you run fuel at a lower octane than this 'Recommendation' you may exceed the ability of the computer to compensate. But the optimum octane value is almost always at least 1 grade, if not 2 grades above this minimum.

    The computer compensates by retarding ignition timing. Which means the spark plug fires later than it would with the optimal fuel. So if you run less than optimal fuel, you may get less than optimal performance and fuel mileage. For many, this is not a problem. And that's OK with me too. It's just that accurate information is important so that everyone can make their own, well informed decision as what fuel to use.

    Years ago I tested different octanes in a 6,000 mile trip to California and back. Running several tanks of one grade and then switching to another. I filled the tank to the same spot on the neck of the tank each time for accuracy. It took awhile to get the fuel to this point. But doing it this way meant a variation of only a few ounces between fill-ups. What I found was that I got at least 10% better fuel mileage with premium (92-93 octane) than I did with either regular or mid-grade. I really did not see enough difference between the lower 2 octanes to bother.

    Ambient temperature seems to have something to do with this as well. Makes sense when you understand what octane does. The hotter the ambient temperature and the harder you are working the motor, the more octane makes a difference. This is why I said that you MAY get less than optimal performance and fuel mileage using less than optimum octane. Because in cooler or cold weather. Or being easy on the motor. The computer may not need to compensate for the lower octane.
    Last edited by BajaRon; 08-07-2019 at 09:41 AM.
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  14. #14
    Very Active Member Zip's Avatar
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    I use 87
    2010 RTSM5


  15. #15
    Very Active Member Sarge707's Avatar
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    I use 93 and my 3 gallon afternoon rides cost me about 75 cents extra in total but I don't need stabil because I'm riding every 20 days OR less ALL winter.
    2015 F3 sm6, Custom Dynamics fender lights.

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    Very Active Member KX5062's Avatar
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    I always use Premium, but the gas blends here in Commiefornia are usually so bad (in terms of performance) there is a noticeable drop off if you use lesser grades.
    2014 RT SE6

    Previously 2008 GS SM5



  17. #17
    Very Active Member jcthorne's Avatar
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    I use the manufacture required minimum of 91 or better as long as its available. The once in a while that only regular is available or 90 is premium, I will use it and move on but I CAN tell a performance drop when the low octane fuel is substituted. Going back there is little difference to notice but that has to do with how the tuning works. The ECU is quick to retard timing based on knock, much slower to bring it back when fuel quality is improved.

    Just FYI the required minimum fuel octane is on your bikes emissions certification label. Usually under the seat or in the frunk near the frame. Owners manuals are notoriously out of date.

    Blue Flame Spyder F3-S

  18. #18
    Very Active Member IdahoMtnSpyder's Avatar
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    Here's long thread discussing my results of two years of riding using both regular and premium gas. https://www.spyderlovers.com/forums/...ium-vs-Regular. Interestingly, the summer I used regular only my MPG was a bit better than the summer I used only premium! The thread was a poll with four choices and no one selected the correct answer! As far as MPG goes, octane has quite possibly the least impact of all the variables that affect MPG.

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  19. #19
    Very Active Member billybovine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ARtraveler View Post
    The information will be all over the place.

    Early Spyders said to use at least 90 octane. For years, I did. Paid 30 - 40 cents per gallon higher for the higher octane.

    Bottom line now, for the last THREE years I have been using 87 octane in all my vehicles. Car, Kawasaki, and two Spyders. I do not notice any lack of performance in either Spyder. I believe the computer compensates.

    I may not be perfectly right...but it is working for me. And now, I am using the 10% ethanol that is common here in AR. Still no difference, IMO.
    Early Spyders did not say to use at least 90 octane. The recommended octane for 2008 to 2012 GS/RS is 87.

    2018 F3 LIMITED

  20. #20
    Thinks out loud Jeriatric's Avatar
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    Highest octane available and Top Tier if available. In my bikes and car.


    Identify what you have control over and find peace with what you don't.

  21. #21
    aka: akspyderman ARtraveler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billybovine View Post
    Early Spyders did not say to use at least 90 octane. The recommended octane for 2008 to 2012 GS/RS is 87.
    I guess I stand corrected. I still used 90 until about three years ago.

    Currently Owned: 2019 F3 Limited, 2014 RTS-SE6 (yellow), 2015 Vulcan 900 LTD

    Previously : 2008 GS-SM5 (silver), 2009 RS-SE5 (red), 2010 RT-S Premier Editon #474 (black) 2011 RT A&C SE5 (magnesium). 6 Spyders, 11 years, 152,900 miles


  22. #22
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    I run premium.
    I did an experiment with a Acura rsx type S that required Premium only fuel. Guess what - it pinged like crazy at idle with just 89 octane in it and luckly I didnt use 87 and I only added a few gallons so I was able to top off with premium and it was quit again. I know the spyder is not this picky But I follow the owners manual.

    My f150 eco boost recomeends 87 normal and premium towing or high temps.

    A lot of independent testing shows my truck gets over 20 more HP on premium vs running regular fuel...........so I run premium when towing.
    2018 RT-L Dark

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  23. #23
    Very Active Member Mazo EMS2's Avatar
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    I tend to go with the highest octane available without ethanol. We were in Iowa a couple weeks ago, and I needed gas, so, I filled up with their best non-ethanol grade. The bike ran like CRAP until I could get a tank of good gas back in it. Maybe I got the bottom of the barrel.....That gas was only rated 87 octane/ethanol free...that seemed a little weird to me. They also had it labeled "recreational use". When gas in WI is labeled recreational use, it's typically the best ethanol free stuff they got, and it usually works great in the Spyder. I'm guessing that the bike "learns" what kind of gas it's burning after so many miles and makes the proper adjustments. In my case that day, going from premium to crap.....it kicked the bike right in the cahoonies and it fell on its face. So, burn what you like, but I think it's best to stick to that grade and not jump back and forth between grades to save few cents now and then

  24. #24
    SpyderLovers Sponsor BajaRon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mazo EMS2 View Post
    I tend to go with the highest octane available without ethanol. We were in Iowa a couple weeks ago, and I needed gas, so, I filled up with their best non-ethanol grade. The bike ran like CRAP until I could get a tank of good gas back in it. Maybe I got the bottom of the barrel.....That gas was only rated 87 octane/ethanol free...that seemed a little weird to me. They also had it labeled "recreational use". When gas in WI is labeled recreational use, it's typically the best ethanol free stuff they got, and it usually works great in the Spyder. I'm guessing that the bike "learns" what kind of gas it's burning after so many miles and makes the proper adjustments. In my case that day, going from premium to crap.....it kicked the bike right in the cahoonies and it fell on its face. So, burn what you like, but I think it's best to stick to that grade and not jump back and forth between grades to save few cents now and then
    Any gas that sits is subject to deterioration. Though ethanol free fuel will last a lot longer in storage. Sometimes fuel stations just don't sell enough to keep fresh fuel in their tank. Sometimes filters can be left too long and get contaminated. And sometimes the wrong fuel can get dumped into a tank or frankly, the fuel station or the delivery company may just be cheating. There are a number of reasons you can experience something like this beyond a simple octane change.
    Only SLOW people have to leave on time...





  25. #25
    Active Member Trapdoor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hentch View Post
    I use a mid grade 89 when gas prices skyrocket. I also used 93 and switched to 89 and saw no big difference in performance.
    Same here. I usually refuel when the gas gauge indicates 1/4 full. I alternate between mid grade or premium, if I can remember what I put in the last time.

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