Rising pollution in the country particularly all the metro cities, the government has no choice but to implement stricter exhaust emission norms. BS6 emission regulations will be implemented for the 1st of April this year. CNG fuel is considered as a green fuel, emitting less harmful exhaust gases.
This has lead to the development of different ways suitable for reducing the number of harmful gasses emitted from the exhaust of the vehicle. Different ways include the introduction of 100% electric vehicles, making some big or small changes in diesel as well as petrol engines to meet those requirements. One such option is amongst us for a long time and has got more reliable than before. Installation of CNG (Compressed Natural) Gas kits in the petrol vehicles.
CNG not being safe is a myth. Now through several years, the technology to run petrol cars on CNG has become safe as well as more efficient.CNG kits are getting more and more popular due to the gradual increase in the prices of diesel and petrol. CNG on an average cost around Rs.40/Kg which is way less as compared to the other two. Running your car on petrol and CNG have their pros and cons.
Gaining tremendous popularity, car manufacturers have started providing a company installed CNG kit which is like a cherry on the cake as it gives a sense of security and vehicles’ warranty is intact.
Which is better petrol or CNG?
Both CNG, as well as petrol, have their own pros and cons depending upon the parameter. The ways through which a fuel can be studied are.
- Performance– Petrol leading this hands down. An engine running on petrol has more power as compared to its counterpart.
- Economy– Considering the price of petrol and CNG petrol is a less economic solution. The cost of petrol per liter is more as compared to the other fuel. Added to that is the cost of long term CNG vehicles is more as compared to the petrol car. Yet doing the math and adding all the affecting factors CNG is about Rs. 3-4 per Km cheaper than its rival fuel.
- Pollution– Petrol emits more harmful gases like Nox and Cox, on the other hand, CNG is more known for producing reduced harmful gases but emitting less harmful Greenhouse gasses.
- Convenience– The worst drawback of CNG is the reduced boot space to accommodate the huge CNG cylinder. CNG as a fuel is not available everywhere. Installation may lead to a change in the vehicle dynamics of the vehicle.
- Safety- Considering the fact that CNG is safe but not as safe as petrol. Being a gas it is more prone to leakage and catching fire.
CNG vs Petrol vs Diesel vs Electric vehicle
A person in the current word going out to buy a car has 4 powertrain options (i.e CNG, petrol, diesel and an EV) and buying a vehicle is one of the most crucial decisions of one’s life.
- The first and foremost reason affecting the car buying decision is the kilometers running per day of the car maintenance cost is also a big factor.
- This is where the Diesel vehicles take a step back. Having high maintenance and the introduction of BS6 has made diesel vehicles even more expensive.
- For petrol and CNG its kind of mixed bag. A vehicle running on petrol has a low overall buying cost and low maintenance. The difference is because of the prices in the fuels.
- This is where a CNG vehicle comes. A petrol engine can easily run on a CNG fuel with minor tweaks. Having nearly the same maintenance and buying cost as petrol and fewer fuel costs CNG fairs as low investment and is friendly to the pocket to some extinct.
- After the enlightenment about the environment EV makes much more sense for a person daily commuting from home to his/her workplace. EV is low running and maintaining costs. The buying price is where this fails. Being a new concept it is expensive than any other car type.
- CNG*- ₹45.20
* – The prices are of Delhi and may vary with state.
CNG in vehicles
The two kinds of CNG equipment in the market are the factory fitted or retrofitted.
Factory Fitted CNG kits
- Some cars come equipped with a CNG kit straight from the factory.
- Those CNG kits are specially designed for a particular vehicle and cannot be installed in any other.
- Factory Fitted kits are safer as compared to other counterparts but are a bit more expensive to buy as a whole package.
- In India people usually prefer such cars as they have their warranty intact.
Also read: MG Hector BS6 launched!
Retrofitted CNG fuel kits
- Any car running on petrol can be retrofitted with a CNG kit and can run on CNG.
- These types of kits are universal can be mounded according to the car, resulting in being less safe.
- The overall cost of the vehicle is lower than the Factory Fitted CNG kits.
- The biggest con of retrofitting a CNG kit in the vehicle is that the customer loses the vehicle warranty.
Advantages of using CNG
- Unlike CNG has a high octane rating of about 120 to about 130.
- In terms of combustion, the engine carries a better combustion process which results in cleaner exhaust emissions. Emissions are reduced by up to 80% as compared to cars running on other fuels.
- Cars running on CNG have less NVH (Noise Vibration Harshness) levels.
- The overall running cost of the vehicle is considerably low.
- It is necessary to check whether the person installing the CNG kit is using the right and genuine CNG kits.
- With that, it is to note that all the equipments installed in the car are new.
- The CNG Tank is Hydro tested for any leakage.
Installation of CNG
Installing an aftermarket CNG kit is a typical task. It should be done by professionals or under their guidance. The components of successfully retrofitting a CNG kit are.
- Pressure Regulator
- Gas/Air Mixer
- CNG filling valve
- High-pressure Line
- CNG tank and valves
- Petrol/CNG Selector switch
- Heating System
- After the installation, the work doesn’t end there. There are specific guidelines for maintaining a vehicle running on CNG.
- The grade of engine oil for CNG vehicles is different from other counterparts.
- The vehicle engine is more prone to wear as there is no fluid inside the engine sot frequent engine checkup are necessary for increasing the life of the engine.
- Running a car on CNG will definitely hamper the performance of the vehicle in a negative way. So one has to be patient while driving one.
- Air Conditioner of the vehicle takes the drive from the engine which adds more load to it. CNG may or may not affect the cooling system of the vehicle.
What is your take on the CNG as fuel? Do let us know in the comment section.