Friday, December 12, 2008

Converting to LPG Powered Vehicle

Since July this year, I have been considering converting our vehicle to use LPG instead of ordinary gasoline. From July to October this year, gas prices have skyrocket because of the financial crisis in the states. Fortunately after gas prices reached as high as P 60.00 per liter, the demand all over the world has slumped which prompted oil companies to reduce their prices which was very beneficial to ordinary people like me. Gas prices went down, and just today, unleaded gasoline is only P 35.00 per liter. If you are using E10 like me, liter is cheaper by 1 peso.

Since gas prices went down to almost 50%, i could say i saved a lot. But this did not stop me from thinking of converting to LPG. When gas prices were P 60 per liter, LPG is around P 39 per liter. Now that gas prices is P 35 per liter, LPG prices also went down to as low as P19 per liter. That means, if you fill up 10 liters of gas, you spend P350, but if you have 10 liters of LPG, you only spend P 190! Wow! Imagine how long will your P500 last for LPG?

There are a few downsides on converting to LPG though. First, its expensive to convert. Last time i checked, its about P 35,000 to P 60,000 depending on the technology and parts installed. Next, you have to go to a specialized mechanic to maintain your system, no more dependency to my reliable Banawe mechanic. Another disadvantage is limited trunk space. Since my ride is a 1995 Honda Civic ESI, trunk space is not that big. Converting to LPG will put a gigantic tank which will occupy 50% of my trunk space. Where will our baby stuff go? What if we plan to go out of town on holidays? Definitely no space for big luggages and shopping for pasalubong. I can not risk on getting a donut type LPG tank to get the space for my spare tire. What if i got a flat while traveling? Will my flat tire last until i reach a vulcanizing shop?

Still a lot of points to consider. But i know gas prices will not stay low for a long time so i have to decide what to do in the coming months. I also tried to join internet groups on using hydrogen to power their vehicles. They are a big group but after reading their posts and blogs, i got lost to their scientific mumbo jumbo. Too technical for me. Plus i'm really not confident playing with my car's engine parts.

I would appreciate any suggestions.... I do need a second, third and fourth opinion regarding this matter.

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