Carburetor vs. Fuel Injection: Which is Better for the Road?

fuel injectionWhen it comes to cars, most of us are more familiar with carburetors. But in reality, fuel injection systems have roots stemming all the way back to the first engines in the 1800s. Unfortunately, the complexity of fuel injection prevented any further development at that point in time, but that’s no longer an issue. Now, diesel fuel injection systems are quite common. In fact, American consumers purchased approximately 489,612 clean diesel cars in 2014 alone.

But what’s the big deal with diesel injectors and carburetors? Which is better? Here’s a short guide to some of the pros and cons of each system to answer your questions.

Emissions and Fuel Efficiency
When it comes to fuel efficiency, injection systems simply can’t be beat. This is primarily because injections systems can be more precise and they’re more easily controlled than the carburetor. In fact, that very reason is a large part of why injection systems started replacing carburetors during the 1970s. Fuel consumption is decreased, emissions are decreased, and the overall driving experience is simply more economical with an injection system.

Power and Performance
Yet again, the fuel injection system wins. Carburetors, along with a lack of real control, don’t really offer the kind of performance that modern drivers want from their vehicle. And thanks to more advanced electronic components and technology, the delivery of fuel stays in tune with exactly what a driver needs. While carburetors can be precise, they can’t account for other factors like injection systems can.

Cost and Complexity
This is the only area where carburetors outpace fuel injectors. If you’re looking at these two systems side by side and purely as mechanical devices, a carburetor is much simpler and less expensive to maintain. Rebuilding a carburetor doesn’t take too much time or money, but having fuel injectors replaced is a more costly process. That being said, having more precision, fuel efficiency, and power are easily worth the small extra cost.

Although carburetors have been around for a long time, the technology has clearly been surpassed. Fuel injectors offer everything a modern driver needs, and they’re producing fewer emissions while they’re at it.

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