GMC Terrain: Fuel / Fuel for Diesel Engines

The selection of a high-quality fuel is important for maintaining optimum vehicle performance. Diesel fuel should meet or exceed the minimum requirements in the most current versions of the local fuel standards

Do not use fuel with more than 15 ppm sulfur.

Do not use a diesel blend containing more than 20% biodiesel by volume.


Use of fuel that does not comply with the required technical standards can lead to engine power loss, increased wear, or engine damage and may void your warranty.

Some improper fuels are:

  • Diesel fuel with the addition of gasoline.
  • Diesel fuel mixed with engine oil or automatic transmission fluid.
  • Triglyceride fuels, such as raw vegetable oil or animal fat, in any form, including with blends of diesel or biodiesel.
  • Marine diesel fuel and fuel oils.
  • Diesel-water emulsions, such as Aquazole.
  • Aftermarket diesel fuel additives, which contain alcohols, organo-metallic additives, or water emulsifiers.


If the vehicle is accidentally refueled with gasoline, do not continue driving the vehicle. Driving the vehicle will damage the fuel system. Have the vehicle towed to a qualified technician to have the gasoline removed from the tank and fuel system. Refuel with Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel fuel. It is also recommended to have the fuel system flushed with Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel, to ensure all gasoline is removed.

Some conditions, such as dirty fuel, may decrease fuel filter life and a CHANGE FUEL FILTER message may come on in the Driver Information Center (DIC).

Climate Grade Diesel Fuels

At temperatures below 0 °C (32 °F), avoid using biodiesel blends above 5% by volume. Using such a fuel may cause fuel filter plugging, system gelling, and freezing, which may adversely impact vehicle starting.

Severe winter grade diesel fuel, such as 1-D diesel fuel or Arctic grade diesel fuel, can be used in extreme cold temperatures (below −18 °C or 0 °F); however, doing so will reduce power and fuel economy. Avoid using severe winter grade fuel in warm or hot climates. It can result in stalling, poor starting, and damage to the fuel injection system.

Fuels improperly blended for cold temperature operation may result in restricted fuel filters. The vehicle is equipped with a fuel heating system to prevent gelling or waxing of conventional diesel fuel and biodiesel blends, but may not prevent all cases.

In case of severe winter conditions, the fuel filter may become clogged by wax naturally present in the fuel. To unclog it, move the vehicle to a warm garage area and allow the filter to warm up. The fuel filter may need to be replaced. See Fuel Filter Replacement (Diesel).


    TOP TIER Detergent Diesel is highly recommended for use with your vehicle. If your area does not have TOP TIER Detergent Diesel, GM recommends the use of ACDelco Diesel Fuel Conditioner...


    Biodiesel is a renewable fuel produced from vegetable oils or animal fats that have been chemically modified to make it compatible with diesel fuel...

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