5 Ways C-Store Owners Can Improve Gas Flow in the Forecourt
June 11, 2020
Gas stations are miniature thirst-quenching oases for the weary traveler or daily commuter. Your customers stop by in need of fuel, hoping to get back on the road and to their destination as quickly as possible. When gas-ups are slow, however, consumers can become frustrated, especially in unforgiving weather, and they are very unlikely to return. While certain factors can influence your flow rate, there are a few ways you can determine the cause and fix the issue on your forecourt. Here’s how you can improve your slow gas flow and keep customers happy:
Change Fuel Filters Frequently
When you experience slow flow rates, old or clogged filters in the dispensers are often to blame. These filters remove particles from gasoline, ultimately protecting your dispensing equipment and your customers’ vehicles. Just like any other filter, however, these parts can become clogged and can drag your flow rate. Take the time to change your fuel filters out – and frequently. Each filter needs to be changed every 300,000 gallons (or roughly every 6 months) to ensure that your flow rate is high.
Check the Nozzles
If the fuel filters aren’t the culprits, you’ll want to investigate the nozzles next. Look for wear and tear in these components. If any look cracked or worn, replace them as soon as possible. Doing so can easily improve your flow rate, especially if you’re switching it out for hardware with higher gallons per minute (GPM).
Combat Pressure Loss in Hoses
Hoses can take quite a beating. They’re exposed to the elements and high levels of wear and tear each day. Check for cracks, kinks, leaks, and discoloration in each hose. Replace any that display visible signs of wearing. Should you choose to replace any hoses, aim for new hoses rated for the least pressure lost across 10 GPM to improve the fueling performance.
Measure and Test the Flow Rate
Conducting a stress test every once in a while is a good way to determine your flow’s true performance. We suggest measuring and testing during both peak and off-peak times. This can help give you an accurate reading to see if you need to take additional steps to increase the flow. To measure, time how long it takes each customer to fill their tank, then divide the amount of gas they pumped by the time it took, which will give you gallons per minute.
Monitor and Maintain Your Underground System
If all the above to-dos check out, then it’s time to look beneath your feet for the possible cause of your problem. Poorly maintained storage tanks in your underground system can quickly lead to clogged filters. You’ll also want to check tank walls and look for leaks in the piping, which can both be a cause for alarm. It’s imperative to find these issues sooner rather than later before they can damage your business!
As a convenience store, you want to ensure that you’re giving your customers the best quality service and products possible, especially on the forecourt. Taking the above steps can help you do just that. And of course, should you need high-quality fuel, rely on your friends at Home Service Oil. We deliver gasoline and diesel fuel whenever you need it. Call us today at 1-800-467-5044 to schedule a delivery!