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Common Gas Pump Glitch Means You Pay More!

Gas, Gas, Gas! Common Pump Glitch Means You Pay More!

Have you noticed sometimes you hit the gas station and you get a pump that sort of stalls for a second when the lever is squeezed? But the money meter starts right away — anywhere from 2 to 6 cents rack up before the gasoline starts gushing. Apparently it's a common, though hard to diagnose and often ignored problem with the "check valve." That's the gizmo that's supposed to make sure gas flows at the same time you start paying.

But even if your gas pump is in full working order, it's allowed to be off as much as $5 for every fill up. Local regulators who test the equipment allow a pump to charge as much as 6 cents more than the gas delivered in a five-gallon test. Regulators try to check out the equipment every six months but some cash-strapped counties don't even meet the one-year requirement in states like New York. The moral of the story? Stay vigilant and keep your eye on that meter.

Wish someone would just give you free money for gas? Wish there was an easy and fun contest that would enter you to win $500 of fuel? Wish you could enter the CitizenSugar Gas Giveaway right now?


Join The Conversation
m1225 m1225 9 years
Is that picture an actual gas sign that hasn't been altered? Recently the most expensive price I saw in my area was at a Hess station where they were charging $4.25 for diesel. Oh dear.
caiden-nguyen caiden-nguyen 9 years
I sure hope the new president helps us with this high gas price problem! I operate a fleet of trucks here in Houston TX and the fuel costs for each truck exceeds $9,000.00 per month. We transport Cars and Diesel is very expensive and now I am starting to think maybe the glitch in the pump may cause me to pay more! We do not know what we will do when gas goes over 5 dollars each gallon! If anyone has any suggestions please comment! Global Warming may just get a whole lot worse unless they come up with alternatives!!! Just a thought, God Bless.
wackdoodle wackdoodle 9 years
Uh sure if someone wants to give me free PREMIUM gasoline for my car Pippi then I'd be a fool to turn it down. But let's see last time I fueled up my 13.1 gallon tank with Premium it cost me just over $51, however that gas will last from now until the middle of June. I think if Citizen had a giveaway for gas I'd enter so long as it will cover a full tank of Premium and not require that I fuel up at either Chervon or Shell. I don't use their gas because they put that soap fuel cleaner in the gas and it ruins otherwise perfect engines. Nothing worse than having to have your fuel system taken off and flush to get that sticky gunky gas out.
Auntie-Coosa Auntie-Coosa 9 years
I read that you should fill your tank when it's half empty so that there will be less displacement of air when the gas pours in, that you should get your gas in the early morning before the sun warms the earth because gas expands and you actually do get less gas when you pump during the heat of the day. That's why in the AM your car doesn't register full if you filled up on the way home from work in the afternoon. So don't be surprised. In Saudi Arabia gasoline is twelve cents a gallon. Now you can cry.
MarinerMandy MarinerMandy 9 years
Ha! Proof that the gas companies are overcharging us! That picture of the gas prices makes me nauseous.
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
oooh laura you are tricky! good tip!
Merlin713 Merlin713 9 years
This is why when you are done getting gas, you push up on the lever that stops your payment and you get the rest of the gas left in the hose...
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
and silly me picked this week to drive my buddy's SUV...
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