I was just going by this post:
Is it wrong?
(To reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet in my
address with the letter 'x')
The attendant was wrong. Do you really think most attendant are union
workers? I don't. At the wages they get, I doubt they are able to afford
There is self-service gas in New Jersey because the people of the state
want it that way.
I'd be curious if you can substantiate that. In Oregon, there's
actually three bans against self service.
1. Oregon State Fire Marshall prohibits the practice as stupid people
and flammable material usually lead to fire.
2. Oregon Department of Environmental Quality prohibits the practice
as spilled gasoline presents a serious threat to groundwater and air
3. Attempting to override the Fire Marshall and DEQ forced a series of
referrendums which the people rejected by unbelievable margins five
times over and ultimately caused the ban to be codified in the ORS.
Conventional wisdom suggests that self service stations usually have
higher prices due to insurance costs that come with making the
customer do the gas station's job for them, as evidenced by Portland,
Oregon (which has predominantly minimum-service stations with a few
full-service stations) having cheaper gas prices than Vancouver,
Washington (which is almost exclusively self-service with only a
couple full-service stations and no minimum-service stations) by
around 10 cents a gallon fairly consistantly over time.
On Fri, 16 Nov 2007 19:53:58 -0800 (PST), Paul Johnson
Bullshit. Stupid people of that caliber and flammable materials is
usually a self-correcting problem, sometimes referred to as the Darwin
Awards. "Here, hold my beer and Watch This!"
If this were the case, you would see gas stations across America
exploding daily, where in reality a "Well Done" station is rare.
I'm in Los Angeles with a very concentrated population, and the last
gas station that went up big-time was from Station Owner gross
stupidity and disabled safety shut-offs at the Propane filling station
around back. And that was twenty years ago.
The station employee didn't check for lit pilot lights on the
Motorhome before fueling the propane tank, and when the fire started
he couldn't shut off the fuel flow because the fusible link on the
tank safety valve had broken and was held open with baling wire -
which also disabled the hand shutoff. Word for the day: "RUN!!"
When the dispenser hose burned through they had a 1" stream of
pressurized burning liquid propane shooting under the burning
Motorhome aimed at the station building, which promptly went up. A
fun time for all.
Bullshit. The auto shutoff nozzle can malfunction for a station
employee just as easily as a self-serve customer. And the station
owner can deny and delay and leave that malfunctioning nozzle in
service just as easily with a full-serve employee running the pump -
he has to pay a service company a few hundred bucks to come out and
The only thing an employee can do differently is refuse to top off
the tank. And if the purchaser is stupid enough to pour $3 a gallon
gas on the ground on purpose...
With an effective scare campaign, the oil companies can easily get
the average Sheeple voter to go along with that kind of ban. Follow
the money and see who paid for all the campaign materials and ad
placement, and I'll bet the trail was disguised and leads back to
someone who directly benefits from the policy continuing.
Bullshit. They have to pay Workmen's Comp for any employees, and if
the job was really that hazardous those rates would be astronomical -
and they are not, it's most likely the same rate as any retail clerk.
Would be a wash compared to general liability.
The difference can easily be explained. What are the fuel taxes and
sales taxes in the two states? Washington could have lower fuel
costs, but if they tack on more taxes and fees along the way to the
You keep putting up straw men, I'll keep knocking them down. A self
serve station has one employee manning the till, and running the
Convenience Store or fixing cars in the bays in between customers.
Full Serve has to have two, three, four employees at peak times
primarily dedicated to working the pumps. Somebody's paying for the
added labor somewhere, work doesn't happen for free.
--<< Bruce >>--
While your argument seems very logical. in Massachusetts, it proves logic
does not work. In MA, each town decides if they can have self serve gas.
Where I work, there are a number of stations in a four town area that
represents both situations. Fact is, the full service sells for the same
price as the self service. For comparison sake, you can compare brand name
for brand name and private label versus private label. On the town line
the stations are across the street from each other. I have no particular
desire to pump my own when, for the same price, I can have someone do it for
me while I sit in the heated comfort for my automobile.
You are correct that it does not happen for free, but in the 20+ years the
stations existed so far, they must be making a buck or they'd not last.
Full service or minimum service? If it's really full service, that's
a pretty good deal. If it's not full service, either you're getting
the terminology wrong, or they're guilty of false advertising...
Please name a gas station that offers complimentary fluids other than air
I've never seen anything other than air and water complimentary at any full
serve gas station anywhere in the US, not anytime since the sixties anyway,
maybe before that, but I wasn't a customer then...
Oh, they're still inside running the C-store, or around back
wrenching on cars - if you are willing to pay a $.30 to $.50 premium
per gallon for the convenience, they'll be more than happy to drop
what they are doing to come out and pump your gas.
And if you are a regular customer (and known good tipper) you might
even get the tires checked or under the hood. But that's pushing the
We do have the law that they have to offer minimum service to the
handicapped at Self-Serve prices - CA Business & Professions Code
13360. But you might have to wave your HC Parking Permit to remind
the attendant, he isn't going to volunteer to come out unless you're a
regular whose car is recognized.
There is an exemption in B&PC 13360 if it's a one-man station, he
doesn't have to - in a bad neighborhood and/or at night, this is a
valid excuse for not leaving that nice safe bulletproof glass bunker
with a pass-drawer for the money. In a nice area on a nice day, it's
just an excuse for laziness.
And the Handicapped folks I know who can often will get out and pump
their own gas for a sense of normalcy. Or out of just plain mule
headed stubbornness, take your pick. ;-) And it's a good excuse to
get up and stretch, all drivers need to take time out to do that.
Many self-serve dispensers have a "not so hidden" button with a
Handicapped symbol on the front panel just for these folks, that
button disables the safety no-flow timeout delay after the pump is
activated. It might take them a little while to get the nozzle around
to the filler and start the flow, or to get the nozzle from the first
tank to the second tank on a pickup or motorhome.
--<< Bruce >>--
I personally wouldn't want service beyond just pumping the gas and washing
the windshield as I think an oil level and tire pressure check is just
inviting them to scam you. The reason being that the oil has to have time
to drain back down before a reading can be taken or it will seem to be low
and if filled back up will be overfilled and with some vehicles overfilled
oil can really cause an MPG loss as well as other issues. Also it invites
them to sell you a quart of oil. On the tire side the attendant doesn't
know if you have driven 5 blocks or 5 miles and if the tires are at
operating temp the pressure will read higher and lowering it back down will
cause them to be underinflated which once again will cause MPG loss and
excessive tire wear.
The "low oil" scam was common on the highways. Many years ago, it was far
less harmful because cars used more oil and chances are if it was overfilled
a bit the level would be back to normal in 500 miles. Two hundred on my '53
Mercury. The last four cars I've owned have not needed any added oil in all
the years I've owned them and I change at 7500 miles on my primary, 5000
miles on my secondary and they've gone over 150,000 miles on a couple of
The other side though, was my daughter that managed to get 3 quarts low.
That was costly.
Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.