Q: How long has SkyCNG been in business?
A: SkyCNG was founded in 2009 by Brett Skipper in Lehi, Utah. You can read the rest of our story here.
Q: Why have so many CNG companies gone out of business?
A: Many CNG conversion companies were started to take advantage of the price difference between gasoline and CNG. Oil prices collapsed in 2014 and have remained relatively low since, leading to record low gasoline prices at the pump. With little fuel price incentive to chase, those installers ran out of business. SkyCNG Texas, on the other hand, is focused on helping operators reduce their fleet vehicles’ emissions without having to invest heavily in new equipment or electric vehicles. Since natural gas prices are expected to remain more-or-less flat for the next ten years (because shale development has unlocked an enormous domestic supply), owners that convert vehicles to CNG today can lock in these historically low fuel prices and protect themselves from the inevitable rise in gasoline and diesel prices for as long as they own the kit (which should last 10 years or more).
Q: If converting to CNG is so great, why haven't more people done it?
A: SkyCNG surveyed commercial vehicle owners in June 2020 and found that over 95% of them were unaware that they could convert their engine to run on both CNG and gasoline or diesel. Those who knew the option existed were generally unaware of its simplicity and reliability. On of SkyCNG's missions is to help people understand the facts about converting their vehicle to a bi-fuel system and help them make an informed decision. One they have the facts, we expect an increasing number of fleet operators will take advantage of the technology.
Q: What do CNG, LPG, LNG, and NGV stand for?
A: CNG stands for Compressed Natural Gas, which is predominantly methane. LPG stands for Liquified Propane Gas, which has slightly different combustion properties than compressed methane. LNG stands for Liquified Natural Gas, which requires significant cooling but offers greater storage capacity for long-haul truckers and for international exports. NGV stands for Natural Gas Vehicle and refers to any vehicle capable of burning natural gas as fuel.
Q: If I get into a serious accident, will the CNG tank explode?
A: Not unless you’re in the movies. Unlike gasoline - which remains a liquid when spilled, forms a puddle, and then ignites – CNG immediately vaporizes and, because it’s lighter than air, dissipates quickly away from the vehicle. In case your vehicle is involved in a fire, CNG tanks are required to pass a burn test where they are exposed to a propane flame for at least 20 minutes. This should be long enough to evacuate everyone to a safe distance and for firefighters to arrive and extinguish the fire.
Q: Is it safe to mount a CNG tank under my vehicle or on the roof, to save space?
A: The short answer is no. The CNG tank must be protected from everyday impacts, so underneath the vehicle is not a suitable spot and it is illegal to mount a CNG tank on your roof. Most CNG tanks are installed behind the cab of a truck or in the trunk of a sedan.
Q: Your video makes installation look quite easy - am I safe to give this a go by myself?
A: SkyCNG always recommends having a certified CNG technician perform the installation. They have the experience and practice to do it safely and will doubtless have learned a few tricks for completing the job quickly without making mistakes. It is a legal requirement to have a certified technician install and inspect the CNG tank.
National Fire Protection Association Standard NFPA 52 ("Vehicular Natural Gas Fuel Systems Code")
CSA Group - CNG Cylinder and Fuel System Inspector Training (2-day workshop)
Q: Do you sell conversion kits to run on LPG?
A: Yes! We provide separate kits for conversion to CNG or LPG. Although CNG and LPG are both liquified gases, they are NOT interchangeable. LPG systems run at lower pressure and require a different regulator from CNG systems.
Q: Do you sell conversion kits for diesel engines?
A: Yes we do. Send us your vehicle information and we will let you know what options are available for converting your vehicles to a dual-fuel system that burns a combination of CNG and diesel, reducing diesel fuel consumption. If you are looking for a dedicated CNG system (where your vehicle can only run on CNG), we recommend first confirming that there is an adequate CNG filling station network in your area of operation or have a fueling station installed at your facility (more info here).
Q: Do you sell conversion kits for semi-trucks? (tractor-trailers)
A: Yes, we work with a partner company that specializes in semi conversions. Send us your vehicle details and we will get back to you with options and a recommendation.
Q: Do you sell conversion kits for large commercial vehicles, like buses or construction equipment?
A: Yes, we work with a partner company that specializes in converting these types of vehicles. Send us your vehicle details and we will get back to you with options and a recommendation.
Q: Do you offer conversion kits for large industrial (e.g. oilfield) engines?
A: Yes, we work with a partner company that specializes in converting these types of engines. Send us your engine details and we will get back to you with options and a recommendation.
Q: Do you sell CNG tanks? (cylinders)
A: Yes we do. Contact us for a quote and we'll also help you find a certified installer in your area. Read more about the four types of CNG tank here.
Q: Is it OK to buy a used CNG tank for my conversion?
A: While used CNG tanks are available, we strongly recommend purchasing a new tank for peace of mind and to maximize its working life.
Q: There's no CNG filling station in my area - what are my options?
A: Write to the CNG company and demand that they build one for you! Just kidding (although it might work!) There are home and modular commercial filling machines available for turning piped natural gas into CNG fuel. Read more about them here.
Q: What types of engine can be converted to run on CNG?
A: Any standard fuel injection engine can be converted, as well as most diesel engines. However, engines that use direct injection technology – such as Ford’s “EcoBoost” and GM’s “Ecotec” models – cannot be converted at this time.
Q: What is the difference between a dedicated system and a bi-fuel system?
A: Dedicated systems can only run on CNG, whereas a bi-fuel system can be switched to run on CNG or gasoline. Installing a conversion kit allows your vehicle to run on CNG without removing its ability to run on gasoline. This is the most common aftermarket approach and provides the convenience and peace of mind of being able to fill up at a regular gas station if you find yourself too far from the nearest CNG filling station.
Q: Are your kit components made in the USA?
A: Some of our components are made in North America, but not all. We have sourced the highest quality, proven components from reputable manufacturers around the world to produce a kit that delivers optimum performance and operating life for customers in the USA.
Q: What is a ballpark cost to convert my truck to CNG?
A: We will gladly provide a free, no obligation quote for supplying a conversion kit for your vehicle(s). However, for budgetary purposes, it costs around $7,000 to convert a typical V8 gasoline truck. This includes the CNG tank (~$4,000), conversion kit and accessories (~$1,500) and labor (~$1,500). Prices will obviously vary depending on the type of vehicle you own and the type of CNG tank you choose.
Q: Does SkyCNG offer special pricing to non-profit organizations?
A: Yes! We offer discounts to churches, charities, and public service organizations. Please contact us for details.
Q: Do SkyCNG conversion kits come with a warranty?
A: Yes, we offer a 5-year warranty on all the components in our kits.
Q: What happened to the Federal and State rebates I used to hear about?
A: Unfortunately, most government programs that incentivized conversion to CNG have ended or been used up. We hope to see new programs in the near future as the transition to cleaner fuels gains momentum. Some States do still offer benefits to drivers of alternative fuel vehicles, which includes CNG. Contact us to discuss the latest information available for your state.
Q: Are incentives for CNG conversion ever coming back?
A: It’s quite possible new Federal and/or State programs might get announced as policy makes grapple with meeting long-range emissions reduction targets. However, you can make a difference now without spending an arm and a leg (and for much less than the upgrade to an electric vehicle).
Q: Are your CNG conversion kits easy to install?
A: SkyCNG kits are easier and faster to install than other products on the market because we select compatible, high-quality components and use installer-friendly technology like plug-and-play connectors that don’t require cutting and soldering wires. That said, we strongly recommend having a certified technician perform the installation to ensure optimum performance.
Q: Where can I find information on performing a CNG conversion?
A: SkyCNG has published an installation training e-book that covers every aspect of CNG conversion and applies to any conversion system on the market (not just ours). You can purchase a copy of the e-book here. There are also several helpful videos in our YouTube library - see Videos section, below.
Q: Does installing a CNG conversion kit void my vehicle's warranty?
A: No, your original warranty is not affected unless you tamper with any of the powertrain management or emissions monitoring systems. Unlike older and inferior systems, SkyCNG conversion kits work alongside your vehicle’s control systems without any reprogramming or disabling. Under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, a dealer cannot void your warranty because of any aftermarket parts unless they can show conclusively that the modification caused another part of the system to fail.
Q: Can you teach my fleet mechanic how to install CNG conversion kits?
A: Absolutely - that’s our preferred approach. We will perform the first installation together with your mechanic to walk them through the process. After that, we’re only ever a phone call or text message away if they run into any issues or need help with a particular installation challenge.
Q: How do your kits ensure my engine runs at peak performance after conversion?
A: SkyCNG kits include hyper-accurate sensors and multipoint calibration (via the OBD-II) port to ensure optimal performance and fuel efficiency. This also helps to maximize the life of your engine by running the right fuel mixture at all times.
Q: Will I notice a drop in engine performance after converting to CNG?
A: When a SkyCNG system has been properly installed and calibrated, the driver shouldn’t notice any difference in performance. Only under exceptional circumstances – such as hard acceleration or heavy towing – will the engine exhibit a slight (5-10%) loss in performance. If you will experience those types of driving conditions on a regular basis, we recommend installing the SkyPRO-HD conversion kit.
Q: When do I need to upgrade to the SkyPRO-HD system?
A: Our standard SkyPRO system is suitable for engines delivering up to ~325 horsepower. Beyond that point, we recommend the HD system to ensure consistent fuel mixture control at high flowrates.
Q: Will CNG conversion mess up my vehicle's emission system or sensors?
A: No, our kits work in conjunction with your existing powertrain management system via the onboard diagnostic (OBD-II) port. We do not tamper with or disable the emissions sensors or system.
Q: Will CNG conversion damage my catalytic converter?
A: No it won’t, provided you use a high-quality (SkyCNG!) kit and have it installed properly by a certified technician. CNG burns hotter than gasoline, which can damage a catalytic converter if the fuel mixture is wrong – something that doesn’t happen with SkyCNG’s computer-controlled injection systems.
Q: Will my vehicle pass a state emissions test (smog test) after converting to CNG?
A: Yes! Provided your vehicle was running properly prior to conversion and the kit has been installed properly, it will pass the emissions test whether running on gasoline or CNG.
Q: Will I be able to switch between CNG and gasoline while driving?
A: Yes, our bi-fuel CNG conversions allow the engine to operate on either gasoline or CNG, and to change fuels on the fly using a switch on your dashboard. Unlike other conversion systems, you will not have to restart or risk stalling the engine.
The following videos are available on our YouTube channel:
We also recommend the following third-party videos: