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CNG Car Safety and Maintenance Tips

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 07/07/2022

The Indian automobile industry has gone through several changes over the years. From traditional gasoline cars in the 1950s to modern electric vehicles in the 2020s, it has come a long way across. But two things that have always worried the Indian car buyers are cost-effectivity and fuel efficiency. That’s what led to the popularity of CNG cars.

CNG stands for Compressed Natural Gas and it has emerged as a good alternative for conventional fuels, including petrol and diesel. CNG as a fuel is very affordable and goes a long way in curbing air pollution. One more advantage of using CNG cars is that they are dual-fuel cars, which means that they can run on both CNG and petrol engines.

Although CNG-powered autos and buses have been running in India for almost two decades, CNG cars have gained popularity in the last five to eight years only. In the Delhi NCR region, commercial transport has almost completely shifted towards the CNG. Keeping these developments in mind, almost all automobile manufacturers in India offer CNG variants of their best-selling cars.

What About the CNG Car Maintenance?

While buying a new CNG car or installing a CNG kit in your old car, several questions can come to your mind. You may think is a CNG car safe or not; what about the maintenance of CNG cars, and what can be the CNG car maintenance costs.

Let us clear the clouds around these questions. Although there are no reasons to doubt a CNG car’s safety, you need to remember that installing a CNG kit in a car can alter its original condition, and hence, proper maintenance is necessary. If you fail to maintain your CNG car properly, it can lead to an untoward incident.

Tips to Maintain Your CNG Car

Since the functioning of a CNG fuel system is different from conventional fuel systems, CNG cars require a different kind of maintenance. Below are some tips that can help you ensure the safety of your CNG car and maintain it efficiently. These CNG car maintenance tips are easy to follow and do not require a mechanic.

  • Always opt for authorised CNG kits

Modern CNG cars come with company-fitted CNG kits, which are better and more reliable. If you want a CNG vehicle, it’s prudent to buy a new CNG car with a pre-installed CNG kit from the manufacturer. However, if you want to convert your existing petrol car into a CNG vehicle, make sure you opt for an authorised CNG kit from a company-certified dealer only.

Avoid installing local CNG kits in your car as it can lead to a huge mishap. Any leakage or damage in the kit can result in a blast as CNG is a highly combustible gas.

  • Check and replace the spark plugs at regular intervals

Spark plugs are one of the main components of a car’s engine as they are responsible for the combustion of fuel. Hence, you should ensure that the spark plugs of your car are functioning properly. You need to check them at regular intervals and replace them if you feel the need.

Also, as a measure of your car’s CNG kit maintenance, make sure the spark plugs in your CNG car are of high quality and CNG-compatible. In the case of CNG cars, the gap between the actual spark source and the plug’s tip is shorter than in petrol or diesel cars. So, if you install spark plugs that are not compatible with CNG engines or if they are of low quality, it can cause fire or damage your car’s engine.

As a general rule suggested by mechanics, you should change your car’s spark plugs every 10,000 kilometres or six months.

  • Clean or replace your air filter at regular intervals

This is one of the most crucial CNG car care tips that you should follow. The air filter of your car helps in the smooth functioning of its engine by preventing dust, dirt, and other contaminants from getting into the engine. A clean air filter can not only enable the engine to function smoothly but also improves the mileage of your car. That is why we recommend you clean your car’s air filter regularly. You should do it more frequently if you’re driving a CNG car. Air filters are usually inexpensive, and hence, you can also replace them at frequent intervals if you drive in a dusty environment. For best results, you should change your car’s air filter every 5,000 kilometres.

  • Clean the throttle body frequently

The throttle body of a car refers to the connecting valve between the air filter and intake manifold. A clean throttle body ensures the smooth air intake during combustion and hence, helps in effortless acceleration of the car. On the other hand, a dirty throttle body can impact the functioning of the engine.

The signs of a dirty throttle body or air filter include poor fuel economy, rough idling, sluggish acceleration, and bumpy stalling. So, while following the above-mentioned CNG car maintenance tip and cleaning your car’s air filter, make sure that you clean its throttle body as well. While cleaning, you can use water spray or a cleaner to remove the dirt and debris accumulated in the throttle body .

  • Check for any leakage from the CNG tank

We have already mentioned before in this blog that CNG is a highly combustible gas. That is why any leakage from the CNG tank of your car can prove to be highly dangerous. Even a small volume of CNG can cause fire and even an explosion in the worst-case scenario. This is why checking for leakages is crucial during maintenance of CNG cars.

You can also check for the leakage by yourself. Although natural gas is odourless and colourless, dealers usually add a chemical to give it a pungent smell so that you can detect leakages. If you notice any such smell, you should call a CNG mechanic immediately.

Last but not least, you should also change the valves of your car’s CNG cylinder if you feel they are too old or worn out.

  • Do not overfill your car’s CNG cylinder

This is our final CNG car kit maintenance tip in this blog. While refilling your car’s CNG cylinder, you should ensure that you maintain the prescribed pressure. Overfilling a CNG cylinder can be very dangerous as it can cause an explosion.

Also, during soaring summer temperatures, gases tend to expand inside the cylinders. So, an overfilled cylinder can prove to be fatal and it can cause the cylinder to burst due to the expansion of the CNG inside it.

To Conclude

These are the best CNG car maintenance tips to ensure the proper safety of your CNG car. Apart from following these tips, you should always take extra precautions while driving a CNG car. For example, you should never smoke in your car, avoid using your mobile phone at refill stations, and start with the petrol mode first before shifting to the CNG mode.

Any negligence in the maintenance of your car can damage its internals. To fix the damaged internals of a car can cost a lot, unless you have riders on your four-wheeler insurance. In addition, to keep your car protected from any untoward incident, you should get a comprehensive car insurance policy from Tata AIG. Our four-wheeler insurance plans are easy to buy, affordable, and highly customisable. So, if you are planning to own a car, we suggest you buy car insurance from Tata AIG.

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