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Last 7 Days


by Matt Brogan

Updated (3.40pm):

The RACV and VACC have reported that thousands of Victorians’ cars have experienced engine trouble this week after a mystery fuel contamination.

Although the exact source of the contamination is as yet unknown several mechanics have reported samples from small, unbranded fuel outlets in Melbourne’s northern and south-eastern suburbs as being the culprit. As a result many cars have been sent for urgent repairs, some even reporting engine failure.

Although hard to detect, the contaminated fuel is clear (like water) in colour. Petrol usually has a gold tinge.

Signs of contaminated fuel include:

  • Engine running rough or stalling
  • Engine harder to start than usual
  • Misfiring, pinging or backfiring
  • “Engine check” light illuminated
  • Sickly sweet smelling exhaust fumes
  • White powdery residue in tail pipe and/or on spark plugs

If your vehicle shows any of these signs it is recommended you stop driving as soon as possible and get your car to a mechanic.

Updated:

The VACC have this afternoon issued a statement with the following advice to consumers who believe they have purchased faulty or sub-standard fuel:

  • Seek advice as soon as possible from a qualified motor mechanic
  • Advise the service station where you bought the fuel from that you have a problem
  • Retain your proof of purchase, which may be a receipt or card transaction docket, identifying the time and date of purchase of fuel
  • Ask the mechanic to collect a sample of the suspect fuel (approximately 2 litres if possible) and either the mechanic or the consumer should retain this sample until the issue is resolved
  • Each consumer will have to decide whether to ask the mechanic to fix the problem or wait until the investigation of this matter has concluded
  • If consumers need their motor vehicle immediately they might chose to request a mechanic to fix the problem and seek compensation from the fuel retailer
  • Consumers may also contact Consumers Affairs Victoria on 1300 558 181 for further advice



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