What determines fuel filler side?

On a 12 hour car trip in an '06 Cadillac STS, (which I wasn't impressed by) we got REALLY bored and began to ponder: How come a lot of the cars have the fuel fill door on the driver's
side, but then some will have it on the passenger side? And NONE of them have it beneath the license plate anymore, which was the best of all. Why don't they all have it on the same side? Seriously--routing of exhaust or fuel line? Since cars are symmetrical from one side to the other, why couldn't they always have it on the same side? Come on, now--I know a whole bunch of you were service station guys pumping gas back in the day, as was I, at 17. And was never the same since. Thank God.
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (James Goforth) wrote:

Tends to be the newer ones.

Tends to be the older ones.

No, the worst of all. Too low, splashes out when topping up, hard on the back bending down to fill and hit in rear end collisions. I'd never buy a car with such a stupid fill location.

??? Perhaps it depends if the designer is left or right handed. It is best to be on the opposite side from the exhaust, but dual exhausts defeat that safe design approach.

The passengers side makes sense when in RSD countries you pull up to the side of the road to fill up. Makes sense when you run out and fill from a can.
I don't mind that my older car fills from the passenger side, because that side of the pumps isn't as busy anymore. <:) Our problem is that my wife's newer car fills from the other side and I get it confused when pulling into a gas station.
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On 1/10/06 12:48 AM, in article snipped-for-privacy@news.telus.net,

Every car I've ever owned (17 in all) filled on the drivers side. My wife has had 2 Dodges and a Nissan, all of which were on the passenger side. Many feel-like-an-ass situations over the years. The newest Dead Or Dying Garbage Emitter has an arrow on the dash telling you which side it's on. Never look at it till you're parked though.
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(James Goforth) wrote:

Solution: she fills hers, you fill yours!!! (A shame it won't work in my household, however.:) ) s
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Actually, the new G6 is on the passenger side, but my 2006 Grand Prix is on the driver's side.

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James Goforth wrote:

Most of the passenger side fill cars are European. It seems that in some countries fuel pumps are sometimes right at the curb and a driver pulls off to the side of the road to fill up, in which case the fuel filler needs to be on the passenger side of the vehicle. Think of it like parallel parking next to a fuel pump. This method is just about never seen in the US. For US self-serve use it is slightly more convenient to have the filler close to the driver. Best of all is to live in New Jersey and not have to pump your own!
Rear fill is very bad for fuel spillage and because it puts the fuel tank in harm's way in a rear end collision. This is the way nearly all US made cars used to be, but it has gone away due to better safety engineering.
John
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Many moons ago I bought a 1956 Chevrolet Bel Air from a classmate. The first time I pulled into a gas station it was like an Abbot and Costello routine. Neither myself or the attendant (this was back in the days when you ran over an airhose and a little bell inside the station went "ding!" and the attendant came out, pumped your gas, checked your oil and washed your windshield), knew where the heck the gas filler was.
There was a little piece of chrome trim in the one taillight assembly you turned to unlatch the assembly, then the entire tailight assembly hinged out and the filler was inside the fender behind the one tailight, can't remember which side though. Darndest thing I ever seen.
Jim
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I worked at a gas station in the mid 60's. Did the window wash, oil check and fill it up sir?. If I remember right the fill on the 56 Bel Air was on the passenger side.

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Funny story from working at the gas station. Me and a friend worked together till 11:00 when a older man came in. Around 15 minute before our shift was over we would move one of our cars to the pump. Never turning the pump on we would put the hose in the fill up, open the valve and hold the hose above our head. We would get enough gas to drive most the week.

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wrote:

There is one location like that in Canada. Chamberlain, Saskatchewan where the busy highway between the two largest cities, Saskatoon and Regina gets squeezed from a four lane to a two lane. Not enough room between the grain elevators and rail road tracks on one side and the river valley on the other side.
I think I've seen another such in some real small village of a few hundred people somewhere in rural Alberta but I sure can't recall it.
Tony
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When I said that having the filler neck behind the license plate was best, I meant from the standpoint of never being on the wrong side of the pump. I'm sure it's not the safest way.
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I remember reading something somewhere that said the majority of cars smashed were hit on the passenger side quarter panel. It was determined to be safer to have the gas filler neck on the left than the right. When it was behind the license plate in the back the filler neck tended to get damaged from being rear ended - even light bumper taps could spring the filler neck to crack the seam where it joins the tank.
I thought it was rather unique that GM hid the filler door on some 50's models. Caddy behind the LR Tailight and the 57 Bel Air's in the end of the quarter panel behind the chrome trim.
The 68- 70 Dodge Chargers had an odd location of the " top " edge of the LR 1/4 panel.
And look at the 60's & 70's Corvettes having the filler on top of the rear - I'll call it the trunklid even thought there was no opening for a trunk.
When I worked at Amaco in 1984 a dude come in with new Porsche - might of been a 911? it wasn't the Carera, it had those flip up headlight modules.,,, anyway there is a rubber flap that you could fold out after the filler door is opened so it could protect the quarter panel from knick knicks from the gas nozzle. Well after the guy pulled the gas cap off the car he didn't realize he was at full serve. I'm ready to run the nozzle in the opening and the rubber boot around the gas nozzle bumps his quarter panel before he got the rubber flap unfolded. This guy almost had a heart attack. I reassured him there was no dent or scratch. I had to pull the nozzle out so he could check, then he pulled out the rubber protector flap and told me to be more careful. We never saw that car or that dude again.
Best one was when Daddy - O was trailering a 20' Renell cabin cruiser in the early 80's. Pulling in the gas staion to fill the boat up - the filler hole is 4 feet above your head. One person had to get in the back of the boat and the hose had to be given to the guy up above. The guy on the ground operated the pump. hahahaaha.
My cars filler neck locations were:
73 Impala, Behind Lic Plate 68 LeSabre, Behind Lic Plate 78 Olds 88, Behind Lic Plate 91 Bonneville, LR 1/4 panel 89 Z - 24, RR 1/4 panel 05 Park Ave, LR 1/4
Harryface 05 Park Avenue, 33,175 91 Bonneville LE 305,279
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James Goforth wrote:

Don't know, but as somebody who rents lots of cars, it drives me nuts because I never know where the thing is and although the choice should be 50-50, I seem to pick the wrong side about 80 percent of the time.
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