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Kawasaki Ninja 300 Fuel 95 or 98?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by TK300, Jan 16, 2016.

  1. Hello, if someone could please help clarify which petrol to use, premium 95 or 98 in the Ninja 300?
    I use to only use the best stuff being 98.
    But I was told recently to use 95 in the ninja, and that 98 is not recommended.

    Thanks guys.
  2. Hi! I use 95 in my ninja works beautifully, maybe check the manual?
  3. Yeah the manual tells you nothing, the usual use "RON 91 or higher"
    Just to elaborate what my friend told me was 98 is fine with bigger engine bikes its just small engines like 300 98 is too volatile.
    Hope someone has a finite answer.

  4. There is no risk of causing damage using 95...
  5. I used either 95 0r 98 in my whinja.
    No discernible difference but being a novice who knows?
    Ran just fine in either so I started just using 95.
  6. If it helps at all the Kawasaki mechanic where I recently purchased my Ninja 300 told me to use 95 as a preference and not to use 98 for much the same reasons you say in the OP
  7. hmm starting to see a 95 trend,
    thanks guys

    (This may sound silly but I got so paranoid that I syphoned out the 98 from my tank and went to replace with 95 :/ )
  8. The manual specifies 91 RON as a minimum standard.

    Higher octane numbers basically mean that the fuel is more resistant to pre-ignition / detonation -- it essentially explodes in the cylinder rather than burning in a controlled 'wavefront' from the spark plug. You hear detonation as knocking or pinging. An air/fuel mixture of higher-octane fuel can be compressed more before it will auto-ignite, so higher-compression engines require fuel with a higher RON. Higher-compression engines generally make more power, which is why the bigger bikes may specify 95 RON as their minimum fuel. Some engines are smart enough to detect detonation and adjust the ignition timing to reduce it.

    Contrary to popular belief, you will not gain a power advantage from using 98 RON in an engine designed for 91. Some of the more premium fuels do contain additives that may affect your engine though, however you're unlikely to harm it by using them. Check the ethanol requirement of your engine though. I would suggest simply experimenting: run a few tanks through & see if it runs more smoothly. For the Ninja 300 I found that Caltex 91 was reasonable, 95 was a bit smoother, 98 no different. On the other hand the 675R didn't like Shell fuels at all.

    So, my preference is Caltex 95, but anything 91 or greater will work.
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  9. DrSleepy, so 98 is no harm but rather just pointless?
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Pretty much. Sure, it may have some cleaning additives in it -- you might find useful to run a tank through from time-to-time, but I think you're unlikely to notice a significant improvement in daily use. For me, it usually works out around < $1.50 more expensive per fill to use 95, and the engine runs noticeably smoother on it, so thats what I use. 98 isn't any better, so I don't use it.

    There is an edge case where using higher-octane fuel may improve engine power, which is when the engine is operating under conditions likely to cause detonation (high temperature & load) which reduces engine power. So by using a higher octane fuel you reduce detonation, improving the consistency of engine power output. The only way to actually increase power is to increase either the amount of hydrocarbon or oxygen in the cylinder. The energy-density of all common fuels is pretty much identical, so switching grades doesn't help here.
  11. Another point to consider so others know,
    I just read that using higher than suggested RON (ie.91 for ninja300) will leave carbon build up, obviously 98 is way more than 95.
    The higher the octane the more delay in combustion (so sure less chance of pre-ignition, pining engine knock)
    but because its more suited for a higher compression engine (eg. 12:1 or 13:1), (ninja 300 being 10.6:1), you will develop some carbon deposits build up in the wave front.
    So there we go, 95 is closer to the manual RON 91 than 98, so I would agree and go with 95.
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  12. Its a ninja, the engine has been around for yonks and its running in parts of the world that would consider 91 fuel premium!
    Just put in 95 and call it a day, the bike doesn't have that high of compression ratio and isn't tuned to take advantage of 98.
    95 is a better and more consistent fuel than 91 however that's not due to octane alone.

    I don't believe your carbon deposit theory, it either detonates prematurly or ignites when the spark goes off....being a 300 and hitting the red-line a few times a ride it shouldn't have any carbon in the engine ;)
    If your referring to a US site they use a different octane system to us and can be tuned differently to meet different emission standards.
  13. Oh boy here we go again
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  14. Haha.. Nick gsxr750, I know.

    Anyway; the spark plug alone is not enough to burn the fuel fully if it has high octane and the engine has a low compression (like the ninja 300 10.6:1).
    That's why on the good side you avoid premature detonation, pinging, engine knock (all same thing really and devastating to the engine),
    but on the bad side this left over of build up.
    And then you get into this whole pouring fuel catalyst to help dissolve the crap.
    Now this is over time of course, using 98 here and there might not be anything.
    Example with cars you get this smelly rotten eggs smell from exhaust, due to the additives in the fuel not burning fully, sometimes leaving sulphur from the additives.
    You hear feedbacks that my bike doesn't run as smooth on 98 and better on a lower octane. Which makes sense. Therefore really you have no improve in power, might even be marginally less.

    All this aside, I recommend using the closest to the manual RON (ninja 300 being 91), because it would be the fullest burning fuel that your engine compression will burn.
    But never use anything under the manual RON or you risk the premature detonation.
    Therefore 91 is a risk (it is boarder line and you don't know how accurate the servo fuel mixture is), 98 has too high octane for the low compression engine, that leaves us to go with 95 :)

    Yes there are cleaning additives added in premium fuels that clean your tank, lines etc but still not worth the risk of incomplete detonation.
    Note. the RON or octane is not how volatile or combustible the fuel is rather it is a rating of how much the compression will burn the fuel.

    PS: yes I am the original post asking for advice but I did a bit or reading and hope this will help others out in my situation down the track,

  15. It's a Ninja 300.....
    There is no performance concern.

    For what it's worth, higher octane fuels are more viscous as a liquid and are harder to atomise via injection.
    Essentially - in a lower compression, lower spec engine, 98 RON is going to labour ignition rather than help it.

    Use metho - she'll be right......
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  16. I thought you sold Wasabi for the Z1000?

    I run 98 in basically every vehicle I own, cleaning additives and all that. If there's benefit then fine but otherwise there's no risk of harm.
    Here she is for sale :(
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  18. For future reference don't listen to mechanical advice from this friend. He talks out of his arse.

    Try the 91, if it runs without pinging in all loads and outside temps, then run the 91. Otherwise run the 95. You are wasting your money on the 98 and could even be causing problems.
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  19. Depends a bit on how smart the ECU is. Some modern ones adjust to what's in there.
  20. Why don't you use 91 octane? Or is the only 91 in your area E10? If so just use 95. As someone else said, it's 300cc LAMS bike - it's not going to make an awful lot of difference.