How much are you overpaying at the pump thanks to faulty check valves?

Photo by Laffy4k. Licensed under Creative Commons license 2.0.

It's bad enough that gas prices are rising faster than lighters will at this summer's Motley Crüe tour. The AP is now reporting how drivers are overpaying as much as $5 per fill-up thanks to a "common glitch" at the nations petrol pumps. Of course, since this is a mechanical problem with the pumps and not any sort of scam, the errors are sometimes in favor of the driver.

The problems lies with the "check valve," which is supposed to regulate the gas flow and the price meter. Trouble is, these can wear out and aren't always replaced quickly. When local governments don't have the funds to pay regulators to go out and check these valves regularly, it sometimes takes a year before the error is discovered. It's not like the check valve issue is not a new one, it's just in the news now thanks to our high gas prices. The best defense against a faulty valve is to watch the price meter and to know your car. One customer mentioned in the AP story explained that he knew something was up when the pump said he'd pumped two more gallons into his car than his tank holds.

[Source: AP]

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