Home Service Oil Company
Home Service Oil Company

Gas Myth: Driving Until Your Tank is Empty

September 10, 2020

Here’s an interesting piece of advice that you’ve probably received over the course of your life – drive your vehicle until the tank is empty to save money. It’s not too crazy of an idea since frequently fueling up on gasoline appears to be more expensive. But is it a fact or a myth? HSO explains why it’s not completely true:

Do I Save Money on Gasoline?

Let’s examine that piece of advice a little closer. How exactly are you saving money? Gas prices will fluctuate depending on a few factors so the idea isn’t always right or wrong. You may be able to buy regular gasoline for $1.94 today and $1.90 two weeks from now. At the same time, the price could increase to $2.00 over the same time period. Either way, with a tank that holds around 15 gallons, the difference in price per gallon can be minimal.

Or Do I Spend More on Repairs?

What’s more expensive than the fuel itself? Repairs to the vehicle’s electrical fuel pump. Like its name states, this important part pumps gasoline from the fuel tank to the carburetor and it relies on a certain amount of gasoline to keep its motor cool. That means when you’re running on empty, it’s running hot. At this point the pump starts to suck air in along with the gasoline. If it continues to overheat, the pump will begin to deteriorate or fail. This fix will certainly cost a lot more than the difference you saved on fueling up.

How Long Can I Run on “E” Anyway?

According to Business Insider, “Automobile manufacturers build in about a gallon (3.8 liters) of reserve fuel beyond the ‘empty’ line. They also warn about low fuel long before a vehicle runs out, since they know that people procrastinate.” This is great news for those who wait until the last second to fuel up, but it’s still a risky gamble. Did you notice exactly when your fuel gauge hit empty or are you just guessing? Check out the rest of Business Insider’s article to see how far the bestselling cars and trucks of 2016 drove after the "low fuel" light turned on.

HSO’s Advice

When it comes to your vehicle’s fuel levels, HSO recommends that you never let it dip below a quarter of a tank. This should be enough gasoline to at least get you to the next gas station. Also, make sure that you are paying attention to the price of gasoline between pit stops. You may notice when prices drop or that one gas station is always cheaper than others. Take that opportunity to fill up and be confident that you are saving money. 

Fueling up an empty tank is HSO’s specialty! We’re proud to deliver fuel quickly and efficiently to your farm or business property whenever you need it. And if you are running low on gasoline, visit your local Express Mart – a proud division of HSO. Contact us today at 1-800-467-5044 to find out more or to request our services.