The RACQ is warning drivers to double check the fuel type before they start pumping it. Photo: RACQ
The RACQ is warning drivers to double check the fuel type before they start pumping it. Photo: RACQ

Costly mistake drivers are making at the bowser

Pay attention at the petrol bowser.

That is the message from the RACQ after it revealed its Roadside Assistance patrols responded to more than 600 drivers who had put the wrong fuel in their vehicles last year.

While it was a simple mistake to make, the motoring organisation warned it could result in costly repairs.

RACQ spokesperson Lucinda Ross said distraction was often the leading cause.

“Sometimes it’s a simple mistake because they’re driving a hire car or a vehicle they’ve borrowed from a friend or family member,” she said.

“Other times, the driver may be confused by looking for a certain coloured nozzle at the pump, because that’s what they’re used to at their local and they don’t double check the label.

“Many people believe diesel nozzles don’t fit in a petrol car’s fuel tank but this isn’t always true, so please don’t rely on that assumption.

“Always double check the fuel type before you pull the trigger.

“Even a small amount of the wrong fuel can cause significant damage to the vehicle’s engine and could lead to thousands of dollars in repair bills.”

Ms Ross said if a driver had put the wrong fuel in their car, they should not start it as that would circulate the fuel and could damage the engine.

If they had started the car, they should turn it off immediately and call for assistance as the fuel would need to be drained.



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