Worst Gasoline Brands in the USA – A Comprehensive Review

Worst gasoline brands are brands that you should avoid because they come from independent or unregulated gas stations. Although using these brands once in a while won’t cause extreme damage to your car, long-term use can affect your car.

Worst Gasoline Brands

It’s important to use highly-rated gas brands that add quality detergent additives to their gas, keeping your engine running smoothly. Let’s take a closer look at the worst brands in the USA that will eventually prevent good engine performance in your car. 

List of the Worst Gasoline Brands 

When choosing a gasoline brand for your car, it’s best to avoid the worst gasoline stations, as long-term use can be bad for your engine. Most car drivers opt for the no-name gasoline brands to save a few dollars, but in the long term, you might end up spending money on fixing your car. 

Reliable gas brands like Shell, Chevron Corp, Citgo, Valero Energy Corp, ExxonMobil, and Texaco are more recommended because they have met the additive requirements, keeping your engine running smoothly. With off-brand gasoline, you might end up with faulty fuel injectors, carbon deposits, and other related issues more often than usual.

The worst gas brands don’t add the detergent additives that other reputable brands add, which are meant to prevent obstructions, buildup, or engine knocking. So, even if unregulated stations are cheaper, you might not be saving money in the long term. The AAA released a report that the worst gas brands can reduce fuel economy and increase emissions.

If you’re confused about which gas brands you should go for, it’s always a good idea to check the list of Top Tier gas brands. These brands are chosen because they add quality detergent additives to their gas before the sale. But the worst gas brands on this list can negatively impact your car’s performance. Let’s take a closer look. 

1. Safeway

Gas Up Your Ride

Pros 
  • Earn gas rewards.
  • Very cheap gas.
  • Get reward offers online.
  • Many locations in the USA.
Cons 
  • Sells mid-grade fuel.
  • Will leave deposits in your engine.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  288

 

Safeway is one of the most popular gas stations in the USA, and their gas has met different federal, state, and industry standards. Due to this, car owners expect it to be safe for use in their vehicles. But, it is not Top Tier certified and will not provide you with reliable gas.

Safeway sells mid-grade fuel, and this can cause your engine to suffer in the long term. The brand sells unbranded fuel that might have been accepted by the AAM, but it is not as clean as well-known brands like Shell and can leave deposits in your engine. You might also deal with low-quality moisture control, sulfur, and compressor oil carryover.

On the good side, it is highly affordable and offers a lot of rewards. If you buy gas from Safeway, you should do so only once in a while. 

2. 7/11 

Fuel Your Adventure

Pros 
  • Low gas prices.
  • Thousands of locations.
  • Might carry gas from Conoco.
  • 7-Eleven fuel cards. 
Cons 
  • It gets gas from different brands, so there is no telling.
  • it runs independently. 
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  9,447

 

7/11 is one of the worst gas brands that you can use consistently. Many car owners get confused about this because 7/11 gets its gas from different brands, including Conoco, which is Top Tier certified. Based on this, they wonder whether the gas won’t also offer the same quality.

It’s important to note that you can’t know where the 7/11 station you are at got its gas from, as there are over 9000 locations in the USA. They also run independently, so they don’t stock high quality gas in all their locations. Based on this, it’s best to avoid it in general or purchase the gas once in a while. 

7/11 offers highly affordable prices and even features an app where you can join their loyalty program. 

3. BP 

Fueling up The Car

Pros  Known as a premium gas brand, gas features innovative formula, cheap gas prices, and uses a special additive. 
Cons  Removed from the Top Tier list, each station runs independently. 
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  7,200

 

BP is the fourth largest gasoline brand in the United States, so it might be surprising to see it on this list. BP gasoline has been on the Top Tier list since 2013 and was known as being a reliable, premium option for all its users. By late 2021, it was removed from the list.

Even if the company promises to use an innovative Invigorate formula that removes engine dirt and a special additive to prevent harmful deposits and clean injectors, it is clear that they have relaxed their quality. Since they were removed from the Top Tier list, BP gas is no longer reliable. 

4. Amoco

Power Your Way 

Pros 
  • The gas formula will clean your engine.
  • Gas is a lead-free.
  • Wide range of stations.
  • There are gas rewards.
Cons 
  • Removed from the Top Tier list. 
  • Low-quality fuel.
  • Company has a bad reputation.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  570

 

Another unreliable gasoline brand is Amoco, which was also removed from the Top Tier certified list. Keep in mind that Amoco and BP merged in 1999, but you can still find stations with the ‘Amoco’ name, which will be misleading when trying to avoid BP. Amoco gas does not include detergents which will eventually lead to engine buildup.

It’s important to note that Amoco uses the same formula as BP, with their Invigorate additive that promises to meet Top Tier standards. But, this seems to be untrue since they have been reduced from the list. You should consider only getting oil from Amoco once in a while. 

5. Alon

Keep Your Car Running

Pros 
  • Different programs to reduce price. 
  • Produces clean burning gas. 
  • Get savings with the DK Debit Card, 
Cons 
  • It is not top-tier certified.
  • A lot of stations are run independently.
  • Is concentrated in the southwestern USA.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  800

 

You should also consider avoiding Alon USA when purchasing gas. You might have seen the stores and stations in East and West Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Arkansas. Aside from being less popular, Alon is not considered a top-quality brand and does not hold a Top Tier certification.

Based on this, it’s not trusted to constantly fill up your car with Alon. Using this gas frequently can lead to engine deposits after about 4000 miles of driving. The company is owned by Delek USA. Also, Alon distributes its fuel to other independent stations, which is another reason why you should not purchase its gas.

6. RaceTrac 

Top Off Car Tank

Pros 
  • Cheaper gas.
  • Offers options for regular, midgrade, and premium fuel
Cons 
  • Poor BTU rating. 
  • Can damage your ignition system or stock engine. 
  • Mostly negative reviews.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  573

 

You should also avoid using gas from RaceTrac, which is a well-known gasoline, convenience, and retail store mostly located in southeastern states in the USA. RaceTrac is not Top Tier certified, but aside from that, the gas seems to offer low quality for most of the drivers. 

Some drivers have reported that the gas caused their car to shut off regularly, even if it is full, or will cause their car to drive really slowly. Some also had to pay a mechanic or dealership to get rid of the gas because it was negatively affecting their car. Thus, it’s important to avoid this gas. If you have no choice, it’s best to get the Unleaded 93 gas.

7. Circle K

Putting Gas in The Tank

Pros 
  • It is cheap to purchase.
  • Get discounts with the loyalty program.
  • Decent for one-off purchases.
Cons 
  • It is an unbranded gas brand. 
  • It is unclear where it gets its gas from.
  • Was removed from the Top Tier list.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  6621

 

It’s best to avoid using Circle K gas regularly, but you can purchase the gas once in a while when you have no other choice. Circle K was on the Top Tier certified list until 2019, when it was removed, showing that it has reduced in quality. Also, the gas company was initially in a franchise with top companies like Shell, Phillips 66, and Exxon.

Once it left the franchise and rebranded as Circle K, it was removed from the list. The gas still uses detergents, so it isn’t the worst of the worst, but it is not premium. Also, Circle K does not mention the refinery that supplies gas to it, or the type of gas it offers, making it unbranded. 

8. Sheetz

Fuel Efficient Cars

Pros 
  • Meets all EPA requirements.
  • Very cheap gas.
  • Company covers repairs for damage caused by the gas.
Cons 
  • Limited to six states.
  • Only works for some cars.
  • Can decrease mileage.
  • Contains ethanol.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  670

 

If you’re located in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina, you might have heard of Sheetz. This company offers cheap gas, like most of the options on this list, but it is known to contain ethanol or work selectively for cars. It can also decrease mileage as the gas is subpar.

The company states that it uses detergent additives in its gas and buys from major oil refineries. It also promises to cover the repair if you have a problem with your car that is caused by its gasoline. Despite this confidence, the gas is not Top-Tier certified. Also, the fuel should not be used in any vehicle, so if you’re unsure, it’s best to avoid it in general.

9. Kwik Trip

Gassing up The Car

Pros 
  • Voted best gas station in the country.
  • Meets all EPA standards.
  • No ethanol in the gas.
  • Few online complaints
Cons 
  • It is not Top Tier.
  • Deals with a shortage of additives.
  • Not ideal for all cars.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  800

 

Kwik Trip has been voted the best gas station in the country for about three years in a row. Despite this, the gas has a couple of bad reviews, and it is not suitable for all kinds of cars. While the company promises that its gas meets the Top Tier certifications, it is not on the list. By 2022, customers noticed that Top Tier stickers were removed from the pumps.

This is because the company that it got its additives from had a shortage. Since then, the company has not been added to the list, so it is possible they have not regained their quality. Despite this, Kwik Trip offers really low prices, customer service and great convenient stores.

10. Speedway

Car Care and Maintenance

Pros 
  • Competitive prices.
  • Decent gas that meets EPA standards.
  • Offers three octane levels of fuel.
  • Sells gas from Shell and Marathon.
Cons 
  • The gas stations are independently owned.
  • The stations are sparsely located.
  • It is not Top Tier.
  • The gas contains ethanol.
Top Tier Certified  No
How Many USA Locations  3,288

 

Rounding up our list of the worst gas brands is Speedway, as this brand is not Top Tier certified, and a lot of the stations use a 10% ethanol blend. Although the company’s gas meets all EPA standards, it’s important to note that their thousands of stations are independently owned, which is unreliable.

The company gets its gas from Shell, Marathon, and other refineries. This is good, but since the stations are independently owned, you never know the source of gas in the branch you are at. 

Are Gasoline Brands That Produce Old Gasoline More Prone to Errors During Rejuvenation?

Gasoline brands specializing in rejuvenating old gasoline techniques may encounter more errors during the process. Factors like improper storage, degradation, and exposure to impurities can make the rejuvenation process challenging. However, with proper testing and filtration methods, these brands can mitigate errors and deliver purified fuel efficiently.

Conclusion 

With this guide on the worst gasoline brands, you can easily avoid the stations that can affect your car in the long term. 

  • The worst gas brands can lead to a buildup of deposits, damage your fuel injector, and reduce the mileage on your gas.
  • Safeway, 7/11, and BP are the worst gas brands that you can purchase from, as they are not on the Top Tier list and have different downsides.
  • These gas brands are usually very cheap, and it is okay to buy gas once in a while.

It’s advisable to go out of your way to get premium, Top Tier gasoline rather than going for the cheap gas that is unreliable 

References

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