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Battle of Diesel vs. Gas (Fuel Efficiency, Performance, and Maintenance)

Today, we will go over the primary differences between diesel- and gas-powered vehicles on the aspects of fuel efficiency, performance, and maintenance costs. To understand the pros and cons of both, you must understand how both engines differ. 


In gas-powered vehicles with combustion engines, a mixture of gas and air is drawn to the engine, and the air gets compressed by the piston. A blend of air and gas gets fired by a spark plug and forces the piston to back down. When the piston springs up again, it forces out the exhaust, and the process starts over again. Diesel engines work similarly, but only air is drawn into the engine when the piston falls. When the piston rises back up, it compresses the air to a smaller size. Diesel vehicles don't require spark plugs to ignite the process.


Fuel Efficiency and Performance of Diesel vs. Gas

In a battle between diesel and gas, diesel is the undisputed winner of fuel economy against non-hybrid gas vehicles. From a scientific viewpoint, diesel compresses more energy into a smaller area, making it more efficient and more cost-effective in terms of fuel economy. Overall, diesel fuel supplies about 15 percent more energy than gasoline. This boost in energy of diesel fuel also affects other performance measures, including increased torque and acceleration.


Maintenance Costs of Diesel vs. Gas

The dispute between diesel-powered vs. gas-powered vehicles and maintenance expenses is continuous. The answer depends on who you ask as to which one is cheaper to upkeep. Some argue that diesel engines contain fewer components, which means there's less overall to maintain. And due to diesel engine efficiency, the frequency of maintenance can be lower than gas engines. However, you can also present the situation the other way. Diesel engines require different types of repairs and (sometimes) the higher expense of the parts and the scarcity of qualified diesel technicians.


Overall, we believe the benefits of diesel engines outweigh those of gas engines. We are a certified truck service center at East Coast Diesel. We have four locations (Durham, NC, Charlotte, NC, Morehead City, NC, and Atlanta, GA), specializing in diesel engines, fleet maintenance, and truck repair. We've worked with various vehicles, including tractor-trailers, buses, agriculture equipment, construction equipment, pickup trucks, and other diesel engine vehicles. If your diesel-powered engine needs maintenance or repairs, we invite you to our shop today!