by Hi Tech Diesel Injection | Jan 6, 2017 | Servicing & Maintenance
Where do you stand with contaminated fuel? Where and why does it happen?
Are insurance companies accountable, the service station or the motorist?
When it comes to contaminated fuel, unfortunately many service stations and insurance companies can avoid admitting to the problem.
The majority of service stations can evade liability if the customer hasn’t kept a receipt, and even then, holding the station accountable is a time consuming and money hungry ordeal for customers.
And some insurance companies aren’t much help either: a number of companies such as AAMI and Just Car Insurance don’t cover contamination.
Allianz, NRMA & GIO will cover the costs but it’s best for motorists to check their individual insurance policy.
Contaminated fuel continues to be an issue affecting thousands of motorists each year, leaving them out of pocket for repairs and without a car for everyday tasks.
Symptoms often present quickly, with the engine running rough, lacking power, stalling; being harder to start than usual; misfiring, pinging or backfiring. The 'engine check' light may also illuminate.
A choice investigation completed late in 2016 found customers have had to foot the bill for an average damage cost of $4986.
The majority of contamination in fuels happens on site, after the fuel has been delivered to the service station.
If the storage tanks are not maintained and inspected regularly, water will build up until it reaches the pickup and a slug of water is dispensed into vehicles.
When a tanker drops fuel into a location, it also stirs up the fuel while the water is in suspension so there will be some pickup of water by the bowser.
After a delivery, the tank needs time to settle before fuel can safely be sold to customers.
While it’s impossible to tell at the bowser whether fuel is contaminated, there are ways motorists can protect themselves if it does happen to them:
Results of the CHOICE investigation:
Related: More Customers opt to install Fuel Filter Kits to protect against fuel contamination
Read some case studies here: