Around the U.S., faulty pumps overcharge on average 6 cents for every fill-up due to the price meter beginning before petrol starts pumping through and enters the tank. The problem has been attributed to a faulty valve and is not present in every pump, but with thousands of gallons of fuel pumped each year by the average consumer the price of these overzealous pumps could turn out to be significant.
In an interview with The Detroit News, New York pump inspector Todd Godlewski said the 6 cent threshold is usually up to three-times higher in his experience. But Godlewski was quick to point out that it’s not a deliberate scheme by the petrol companies to rob you of those precious extra cents - apparently faulty valves can work in favor of consumers as well by freezing the price ticker as gas pumps.
While there are no real figures or statistics about the scope of the phenomenon or how large its effect, a study is planned to quantify these figures and determine the extent of the problem in the near future.