It’s the details that matter. Here we are, the most modern society in the world, and we can’t agree which side of the car to put the gas nozzles on.
Filling up at the gas station is now a comic act as cars with the nozzles on the driver’s side must jockey for position against cars with nozzles on the passenger side.
A righty and a lefty often cannot fill up head to head because the nozzles in the rear of the car make center space a premium and the hoses won’t reach. Cars circle around awkwardly and comically with minimal efficiency.
Be aware of it the next time you fill up or spend five minutes watching a crowded gas station to see what I mean. It’s dangerous and comically inneficient.
It pisses me off because it is a totally unnecessary problem that must waste tens of thousands of man hours and cost millions and millions of dollars due to accidents.
If I was in charge all gas filler caps would be on the driver’s side. Everyone could line up the same way. There’d be a clear traffic pattern. Nobody would have to stretch hoses, and we could fill up without having to step out in traffic. Problem solved.
The government rules over minutiae of car design. Why do they overlook this obvious issue?
Why can’t we as a civilized society all agree to put our nozzles on the left? Is it too much to ask for?
They can’t get together about something as simple and innocuous as which side the gas tank is on - how about something a little more important, like the height of bumpers, or how bright headlights can be, or making all passenger vehicles the same height so everybody can see the road? I try not to think about these things, because it makes me horribly depressed with what a bunch of shitheads humans are.
Because what the government rules over when it comes to car design is safety features. Outside of NHTSA’s Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and the ignored-with-impunity fleet fuel economy provisions, there are basically no federal regulations for the design of motor vehicles.
I put my vote in for having it on the drivers side of the car. I will tolerate opinions for the rear. Anyone who thinks it should be on the right is a dumbass, unless he has his own little Gilligan who travels around with him at all times and can pump the gas, or is from a country where they drive on the left side of the road. It makes sense to not have to get out and go all the way to the other side of the car, and to logically approach the service bay from the right.
First off, I believe you are referring to filler tubes which receive the nozzles.
Secondly, I’ve never encountered any delays or problems as a result of indiscriminate filler tube location design. but I believe that if all filler tubes were located on the driver’s side, there would be long line ups and delays since no one would use the left side of the pumps unless they turn around to fill up and then turn around to proceed again.
I’ve actually heard that engineering students these days are being encouraged to pick a side and stick with it, across the board. There should be a standard.
Market might have something to do with it, though. We bought a 2003 Toyota Prius last year. The fill was on the right. This makes sense, since the cars were built in Japan, where the right is the driver’s side. We just bought a new 2004 Prius a month or so ago. The car was redesigned largely with the American market in mind. The fuel door is on the left. Coincidence? Probably not. Still, you figure, they can move the steering wheel over, why the f#@$! fuel door?
Actually, I prefer having the filler tube on the passenger side. That way, when I open the driver’s door to get out, it doesn’t slam into that huge concrete thing the pumps are on top of, and I don’t have to try to squeeze out through a partially open door.
But aside from that, yes, I agree. There should be a standard.
Hmmm, most new cars have the little arrow indicating which side the gas fill is on.
And around here most gas stations (Long Island, NY) have developed 1 way patterns (most, not all). So cars face one direction can use both sides of the pumps.
So, I really don’t see the problem here…
Not every country drives on the same side of the road - this would make an extra modification necessary for exported cars - this might seem trivial in view of the changes already required to change the driver’s side, but for most cars, it would involve differences in body panels.
I’m curious as to how this is a large issue, but maybe I’ve just led a sheltered life. In this country, petrol stations are generally laid out thus:
The pumps are double-sided, so that cars parked on both sides of the pump can refuel simultaneously.
The rows of pumps are separated by a gap that is a little over three cars’ width, so that it is a)possible to pass an occupied pump to reach an unoccupied one in front and b)possible to pass an occupied pump in order to leave the station.
The filler hoses are supposedly long enough to reach the other side of the vehicle, but in truth most people find this awkward and would prefer to find an unoccupied pump on the correct side.
Yes!! It’s even worse when they have those little concrete or steel pillars (“bollards” is the term of art, I believe) at the ends of the islands to keep people from plowing into the pumps. Those force me to pull up a few feet away from the pumps, and in a gas station with narrow lanes, that creates its own set of problems.
The pattern over here mostly appears to be: the filler cap is on the passenger side of the car, depending on where the car was originally built. My Citroën is from France, and hence has the cap on the right side of the car. Most Japanese and some English built cars have the cap on the left side, which over here makes it the driver side. I guess making an opposite-drive version of a car is difficult enough, what with changing the steering wheel, pedals, and dashboard, that they forget about the filler cap altogether.
At any rate, obviously a filler cap ideally should be on the passenger side, not the driver’s side. For one, there’s the reason stated above: if it’s on the driver side, you risk slamming your door into the pump. Also, not all gas stations are these huge 20 pump ones. Sometimes, you stop at one of those small gas stations in a tiny village, and they’ll typically be on the right hand side of the road, offering one small lane to park your car in - to the left of the pump.
Furthermore, my car is small enough that I can fill it from both sides of the pump, despite it having the cap on the right. I just pick a vacant spot (I will pick the more convenient one when it’s available, of course), and if the only one available is to the right of the pump, so be it.
Besides… what IF there were to become a standard, let’s say in the US. With the size of your vehicles, wouldn’t that effectively render 50% of all gas pumps useless, as you can’t fill these land yachts up from both sides?
We have two vehicles - an American built van, and a VW. Each has the fill door on opposite sides. The van’s is on the left, the VW’s is on the right. I have to remember which is which when I go to the pumps.
My SO told me that the door on the right makes more sense and is safer because if you run out of gas on a busy road, you don’t have to stand on the traffic side to put gas in. Sounds like a good reason to me.
The station where I do my regular filling has one way in and one way out, and extra long hoses (on a pulley system so that the “excess” is kept out of the way until it’s needed) so that no matter which side of the pump you pull to, you can reach the fill door. And those extra long hoses really do work, even for drivers of the largest of land yacht SUVs. It’s one of the reasons (though not the paramount one, I admit) why that particular station has my loyalty.
Where is the fill door on the new Volkswagen Beetles? I seem to recall the 60s-era Bug had the fill somewhere in the front of the car, I have vague memories of my grandfather filling somewhere above the hood, near the windshield. (And of course that hood was actually the lid of the trunk because the engine was in the rear.) There were other cars, mainly European, that I recall having that weird front fill thing going on, too. MGs, maybe? Or Alfa Romeos?
I think the New Beetle just has it on the right rear panel, as the car is technically a Golf underneath.
The old Beetle had the filler on the right front panel, behind a cover lid. I don’t know about any weird Alfa Romeos, although perhaps some of the older Spiders had the filler caps on top of the trunk area, behind the rear window/cloth cover. Older (and some new) Jaguars have two filler caps (on each side, behind the passenger rear windows), because… they have two gas tanks.