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Old 03-12-2008, 11:49 PM   #1
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Tips on pumping gas

I just got the following e-mail today and thought it was interesting. I sounds like it makes sense, so I thought I'd share:


TIPS ON PUMPING GAS

My line of work is in petroleum for about 31 years now, so here are some tricks to get more of your money's worth for every gallon...


Only buy or fill up your car or truck in the early morning when the ground
temperature is still cold. Remember that all service stations have their
storage tanks buried below ground. The colder the ground the more dense the
gasoline, when it gets warmer gasoline expands, so buying in the afternoon
or in the evening....your gallon is not exactly a gallon. In the petroleum
business, the specific gravity and the temperature of the gasoline, diesel
and jet fuel, ethanol and other petroleum products plays an important role.

A 1-degree rise in temperature is a big deal for this business. But the
service stations do not have temperature compensation at the pumps.

When you're filling up do not squeeze the trigger of the nozzle to a fast
mode. If you look you will see that the trigger has three (3)stages: low,
middle, and high. In slow mode you should be pumping on low speed, thereby
minimizing the vapors that are created while you are pumping. All hoses at
the pump have a vapor return. If you are pumping on the fast rate, some
other liquid that goes to your tank becomes vapor. Those vapors are being
sucked up and back into the underground storage tank so you're getting less
worth for your money.

One of the most important tips is to fill up when your gas tank is HALF FULL
or HALF EMPTY. The reason for this is, the more gas you have in your tank
the less air occupying its empty space. Gasoline evaporates faster than you
can imagine. Gasoline storage tanks have an internal floating roof. This
roof serves as zero clearance between the gas and the atmosphere, so it
minimizes the evaporation. Unlike service stations, here where I work, every
truck that we load is temperature compensated so that every gallon is
actually the exact amount.

Another reminder, if there is a gasoline truck pumping into the storage
tanks when you stop to buy gas, DO NOT fill up--most likely the gasoline is
being stirred up as the gas is being delivered, and you might pick up some
of the dirt that normally settles on the bottom. Hope this will help you
get the most value for your money.


Edit: I just checked it out at snopes.com and it says that research is in progress.

Last edited by Sterling; 03-13-2008 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 03-13-2008, 12:00 AM   #2
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I've seen that Email before, and I'd say its solid info.

How much of a difference would you notice...is hard to say.

It might make you feel alittle better when you spending 3.75 a gallon for premium.
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Old 03-13-2008, 06:43 AM   #3
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I can verify the effect temperature has on gas comment in the article. Most aircraft (all military) measure the fuel in pounds not gallons. partly, cus it's easier to figure wieght before takoff. But we're talking 4,000 pounds of gas in a military Helo. Fighter jets use 30-60,000 pounds. Cargo aircraft... I have no idea but it's a bunch. So, if we were measureing that in gallons or volume, and we had a 5 degree temp change (very common) That could mean a half an hour miscalculation in flight time or more. When measureing in pounds. Pounds is pounds no matter what the temp is.

And aviation fuel cells are also collapseable to keep the evaporation to a minimum.

That's pretty cool, I never though to relate that to my cars...
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Old 03-13-2008, 09:55 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sterlingnotes View Post
Another reminder, if there is a gasoline truck pumping into the storage
tanks when you stop to buy gas, DO NOT fill up--most likely the gasoline is
being stirred up as the gas is being delivered, and you might pick up some
of the dirt that normally settles on the bottom. Hope this will help you
get the most value for your money.
I can speak for this one, you won’t get one mile before your car breaks down.
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Old 03-13-2008, 11:37 AM   #5
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Question....

if the gas storage tank has an internal floating roof, then where do the "returning vapors" go that get pushed back from your gas tank?

It's not going to push up that roof, right? Don't ya think it would just escape out of the hose and receiver?
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Old 03-13-2008, 12:43 PM   #6
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Question....

if the gas storage tank has an internal floating roof, then where do the "returning vapors" go that get pushed back from your gas tank?

It's not going to push up that roof, right? Don't ya think it would just escape out of the hose and receiver?
If i'm not mistaken returned vapors cool down and return to liquid... I think..
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Old 03-13-2008, 03:39 PM   #7
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Exactly. The vapor return causes the vapors to be pressurized ,which forces them back into a liquid phase.
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Old 03-13-2008, 05:09 PM   #8
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Thats some really useful information.. Thanks alot for posting it, I've never seen it.
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Old 03-14-2008, 12:48 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtahvit View Post
If i'm not mistaken returned vapors cool down and return to liquid... I think..
Quote:
Originally Posted by blindingillusion View Post
Exactly. The vapor return causes the vapors to be pressurized ,which forces them back into a liquid phase.
Hmmm...I did not know that. Makes more sense, then.
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Old 03-14-2008, 08:30 AM   #10
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thanks 4 the info
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Old 03-14-2008, 12:51 PM   #11
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I'm no geologist but its my understanding that afer you get below 18 inches, ground temperature is reletivly constant, unless you live in some extreme environment. I'm sure that the storage tanks are deeper that 18 inches. I'll do some research to verify this, but in the mean time if anyone knows more about this, let me know.
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Old 03-14-2008, 12:55 PM   #12
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I'm very sure the ground tanks are a lot deeper than 18 inches. From the places I've seen where they've torn up the gound and pulled out the tanks, they were VERY deep in the ground.
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Old 03-14-2008, 01:28 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by jhitson View Post
I'm no geologist but its my understanding that afer you get below 18 inches, ground temperature is reletivly constant, unless you live in some extreme environment. I'm sure that the storage tanks are deeper that 18 inches. I'll do some research to verify this, but in the mean time if anyone knows more about this, let me know.
Gah, damn my insatiable thirst for knowledge. After doing some research and make some of my own conclusions.

At 6 feet down the temperature of the ground is relatively stable year round. Depending on where you live it can be anywhere from 45F to 70F, but usually doesn't delta more than 5-10%.

What does this mean. In short it means pumping gas early because of it being cooler is absolute BS. I know how to work out the math to show much the volume will change over a 10 degree delta, and if you want that I can get it.
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Old 03-14-2008, 01:39 PM   #14
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Quote:
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What does this mean. In short it means pumping gas early because of it being cooler is absolute BS.
What about the piping, and the hose? Gasoline is rather unstable, and I don't thin it'd take much temp difference to expand enough to make a difference. Flowing through a warm BLACK (absorbing energy > heat from the sun) hose, in the middle of the afternoon is bound to have some effect.
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Old 03-14-2008, 02:16 PM   #15
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It has about half the specific heat capacity of water, so yes, that first half a gallon to a gallon may be slightly expanded due to heat, but anything after that isn't going to spend enough time in the hose to effect it.

(specific heats in kJ/kg*K )
Water, fresh 4.19
Gasoline 2.22
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Old 03-14-2008, 03:08 PM   #16
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but anything after that isn't going to spend enough time in the hose to effect it.
See...that makes sense too. I think the gas would be moving so quickly that it wouldn't have an effect on it.
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Old 03-15-2008, 11:14 AM   #17
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What about the piping, and the hose? Gasoline is rather unstable, and I don't thin it'd take much temp difference to expand enough to make a difference. Flowing through a warm BLACK (absorbing energy > heat from the sun) hose, in the middle of the afternoon is bound to have some effect.
The gas has already been metered by the time it gets to the hose, so even a hot black hose would have no affect on how much gas you get.
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