Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Low fuel controversy

Posted September 25, 2008

Do you wait until the last minute to fill up on gas?  Please weigh in.

A big debate on the WRAL Morning News set today - do more men than women drive their cars and trucks until the fuel warning light comes on? Lynda Loveland is pushing the theory that it is a "man thing." Veteran crew member Patrick Marrow keeps driving until his Camaro coughs on the final fumes in the tank. I typically wait til the amber light glows in my Honda Pilot because I know I still have a lot of wiggle room.

Lynda surveyed many of our news staffers and concludes that men tend to wait a lot longer than women when it comes to filling up. Here are her statistics. 75% of the men surveyed wait until the fuel light glows before pumping gas. Only 35% of women polled wait until the last minute. Lynda argues that women are better planners and perhaps are more in tune with family safety issues.

I would like to get your opinion and comments.


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  • flyfishNC Sep 25, 2008

    Bill--My wife says the gas light is there for all men and she wishes that the same light was installed strategically throughout the house. I do, for the most part wait for the light to come on before fueling up and sometimes I push it to see if/what shades of orange the light will turn and if I can beat the number of miles I had gone the last time it came on. (I will not do it with the oil light and have the oil changed regularly...which confuses my wife to no end) HA.

  • jwstevens04 Sep 25, 2008

    I always stretch it as far as I can and it drives my husband crazy. He's fills up once it hits 1/4 tank, I wait until the light is on and then some. :) I know I should not do this, but I just do. HOWEVER, if my children are in the car, I will not wait until the light comes on, I'll put gas in so I won't have to worry about running out with two small children in the car.

  • Steve Crisp Sep 25, 2008

    I always fill up when I get just above half a tank. Doing so reduces condensation in the tank and makes sure you have enough gas to bug out in any emergency without worrying about needing to fill up the tank.

  • owlady Sep 25, 2008

    I try to fill up before the light comes on. Like Lynda said about women planning, I usually go get gas when I am conveniently already shopping and have the time to spare. Now, as for my teenage daughter,---ha, last week she waited until the light came on and the needle was all the way down before getting gas. She has a job, but does not like spending her hard earned money on gas until she absolutely has to. But she learned a lesson the week we got Tropical Storm Hanna, The first two stations she went to in Raleigh were all out of gas. I noticed this week that she bought it before the light came on! We drive Honda's, they are great on gas.

  • At Work Sep 25, 2008

    Before I met my now husband my car never got under a half a tank of gas, now its always on E! I never let the light get on because there may be an emergency that I have to go some where and Im not going to stop to get gas. He on the other hand leaves it so when I get in it to go to work the light comes on and I fill it up on the way. Out of our joint checking account I might add!

  • pulstar40 Sep 25, 2008

    I fill up when the tank reaches 1/4 full. It's a habit from living up north - when being stuck in traffic was an everyday occurence, and it was a bad thing for your tank if you let it get too low during the winter. My husband on the other hand, waits for the light to come on.

  • shutterbug Sep 25, 2008

    My truck has a 35-gallon tank. I usually try and fill it about the half-tank level.

  • tennispro Sep 25, 2008

    MY uncle taught me a a long time ago to fill up whenever I get to one half on my gas. I have always filled up when it gets to one half so it is a habit now. I have tried to instill this in my daughter but am not sure she does this on a regular basis!!

  • Yellow Rider Sep 25, 2008

    I fill up when my gauge is on E. Don't want to waste any more of my life in gas stations than necessary.

  • MaplesMom Sep 25, 2008

    I typically try to fill up when I am at a quarter tank. However, last Friday when the gas prices hit $4.50 +, I was coasting on fumes trying to find a place. Paid $4.19 but was limited to a certain amount of gallons. Not a problem- I got enough to get me for a few days until the prices came back down.




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