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Old 30th May 2012, 13:30   #31
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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Originally Posted by aplang1 View Post
He/She is already under tremendous pressure from the company and there are no margins for errors.
Yeah that's how things work here...with us customers, there is a really w-i-d-e margin to get cheated. Certainly I can't imagine myself standing with a measuring can before my car gets topped up. No option but to suffer silently, I presume.

Or use a bicycle.
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Old 30th May 2012, 14:48   #32
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

Thanks aplang1 for being honest to tell us what happens behind the scenes. The flaming that he is getting here was expected, I guess. Wherever I go, everybody cheats. The petrolwallah cheats, the gas agency cheats, the auto/taxi drivers cheat, service centers cheat, the grocery shops cheat, vegetable vendor cheats, govt babus cheat, telephone providers cheat, cable wallah cheats, employer cheats, politicians cheat. Who is left? Only me? Why?
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Old 30th May 2012, 15:25   #33
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

Well do we customers really bother about 1000ml going in for 77 bucks? It's a given in our country to calculate mentally (not just for petrol) for factoring some % extra in every aspect as everyone is short changed, yes, including the government.

Evaporation at the factory, dealer, and inside our fuel tanks + adulteration ( 5 out of 10 bunks ) all leads to 1000 ml being available only at a rupee and a half extra in final amount displayed. Assuming that we get what we pay for is unrealistic in our country.
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Old 30th May 2012, 15:28   #34
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

So my bike and car actually give better mileage than what I believed.
Thanks for sharing with honesty. But I do find the evaporation levels as way higher than what I always assumed.
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Old 30th May 2012, 15:37   #35
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

Great thread, aplang! Very eye-opening.

In any industry you will have leakage/damage/spoilage provisioned for, which is borne by the manufacturer. For example in FMCG, retail customers only have to give a letter of complaint with the SKU in question and they get a full replacement from the retailer who in turn passes it to the distributor and eventually the company. I find it hard to believe that oil majors have no such system in place.
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Old 30th May 2012, 15:50   #36
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

6000 L of petrol per day would translate to about 300 bikes (300x5L) and 100 cars (100x45L) with empty tanks filling petrol every day. Maybe in a very busy gas station, but is this a fair assumption?

Thanks for sharing your views. Its good to know what losses these businesses incur. But I do agree with the general consensus that we, the customer, shouldn't pay for others' inefficiencies.
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Old 30th May 2012, 15:59   #37
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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Originally Posted by Mad Max View Post
6000 L of petrol per day would translate to about 300 bikes (300x5L) and 100 cars (100x45L) with empty tanks filling petrol every day. Maybe in a very busy gas station, but is this a fair assumption?
The busy ones here in chennai sell around 20,000 litres per day. The average sales per bunk (including both small & large ones) here is around 7000 litres per day.
Diesel sales is even higher.

Last edited by Daewood : 30th May 2012 at 16:10.
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Old 30th May 2012, 16:09   #38
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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Agreed. But that still does not justify giving me 978 ml and calling that a litre. As others have already pointed out, I, as the end customer, having nothing to do with your 270 litre loss and do not believe it is fair that I should be penalized for the same.
Ultimately, the end customer pays for all the costs involved. That's the way it is in every business. If you want 1000ml per litre all the time, the only other way is to recover the loss (135*70), by distributing that cost to every litre of petrol actually sold (i.e., increasing dealer commission). Who will pay for the increased commission? You - the end customer, by paying more for every litre of petrol.

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Being a small businessman myself (home made chocolates), I do not mark a pack of chocolates 500gms, when the pack in reality contains 478gms. I price the commodity factoring in transport loss and other possible losses, to ensure that my profit margins do not suffer. If I resorted to marking the weight more than the reality, that would be cheating an unsuspecting customer, wouldn't it?
That's not the best analogy, is it? You being the owner of the business can decide the price of your chocolate pack so as to cover all your costs. The petrol pump owner cannot negotiate the price at which he buys or sells fuel. He doesn't even gain anything when fuel prices go up because his margin per litre is fixed and is not a percentage of the MRP of petrol.

Before anyone asks: I'm not a petrol pump owner and no one in my family is. I'm not connected to any petroleum company. However, if the figures in the OP are correct, this seems like a business where you can't make a decent living unless you cheat.
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Old 30th May 2012, 16:16   #39
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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Originally Posted by Driving_Nomad View Post
If you walk-in to a pump with a bottle (say a soft drink pet bottle of 1 or 2L capacity) and ask it to be filled, the guys at the petrol bunk always direct you to one particular pump (Have done this more than a fifty times in 4 years during my college days and this has invariably been the case). Has anyone experienced this? Does it mean that, that one pump is calibrated to exactly dispense 1000ml?
.
Interesting observation and now that I think of it, my neighbourhood pump also dispenses fuel in bottles and likes through a specific machine. I think I should start frequenting that specific machine.

My other observation is that this is generally a 2 wheeler station, where probably money is being made through the smaller volumes that get filled and using some unique idea with the hose pipe. Seldom do you see bottles being filled from machines that dispense fuel to 4 wheelers.
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Old 30th May 2012, 16:21   #40
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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However, if the figures in the OP are correct, this seems like a business where you can't make a decent living unless you cheat.
Ahhh. Now I understand why all the influential people (read politicians' kith & kin) have fuel pump businesses. First you are honest, you cannot make a profit, so you cheat to make a decent living. Then because you can cheat, you cheat more and more and then have a indecent living. Sounds about right.

I would rather the fuel pumps display a board saying 1 litre means anything between 900 ml to 978 ml. That way, at least I will not be assuming that I am getting 1000 ml. Or even better, some fuel stations can display a board saying - you pay for 1000ml, you get 1000ml in this pump. Will cost you Rs. 1.54 more. I will happily pay that much extra, if I am getting what I am paying for.

No matter what the reasoning, giving me 978 ml and charging me for 1000 ml, without tell me as much is cheating. Period.

Rajan
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Old 30th May 2012, 16:30   #41
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

Well, no one ever believed that they got 1000ml when they paid for a litre - the only doubt was about how much actually went in.

And more importantly, how do they do this ? By rigging the dispensers ? I thought these would be calibrated by the fuel-co folks - but then atleast quite some of the folks could be open to 'favours' to do the needful.

And if the dispenser is rigged, it would not be something that can be set-right on the fly. So if I walk into a bunk that is known to rig the dispenser, with a calibrated can and ask for a litre or two, it should dispense the rigged amount only, right ? And thus their cheating would be caught red-handed won't it ?

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 30th May 2012 at 16:42.
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Old 30th May 2012, 16:34   #42
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

Is itn't this akin to adding wastage and making charges to gold ornaments? The costlier the commodity, every leakage or wastage charges will be passed on to the end consumer. May be they can fill in 1000ml and add an extra evaporation charge as you pointed out.

Last edited by poloman : 30th May 2012 at 16:43.
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Old 30th May 2012, 17:14   #43
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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Well, no one ever believed that they got 1000ml when they paid for a litre - the only doubt was about how much actually went in.
True that. We always knew that there was something shady going on. But coming out in the public and trying to justify that is a bit hard to digest.

Or maybe it is just me.

Rajan
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Old 30th May 2012, 17:18   #44
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

Excellent thread aplang1, rated 5 stars.

Petrol pump/Gas agency Businesses are high profile as we all know.

The same thing happens in LPG cylinders also, we don't get exactly 14.2 KG (less by 200-400 grams). Same must be the case with Auto LPG/CNG.

The issue is that we can hardly do anything in this regard except for going to bunks which are trustworthy and are operated by lesser devils!

Also I never fill so called premium petrol in bike/cars for the reason everyone must be aware of.

Last edited by bluevolt : 30th May 2012 at 17:30.
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Old 30th May 2012, 17:27   #45
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Default Re: The Petrol Pump Story - How Petrol Pumps Operate

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Originally Posted by StarrySky View Post
That's not the best analogy, is it? You being the owner of the business can decide the price of your chocolate pack so as to cover all your costs. The petrol pump owner cannot negotiate the price at which he buys or sells fuel. He doesn't even gain anything when fuel prices go up because his margin per litre is fixed and is not a percentage of the MRP of petrol.
So if a petrol pump owner comes to my (hypothetical) clothes shop to buy a pair of trousers, is it ok that I sell him a pair one bilang short?
Thats ridiculous.
A lot of petrol pumps sell more than 6000 litres of fuel a day. Even if they sell this much, an amount of 60K per petrol pump is guaranteed. This is adequate returns for one business as a base earning. So why cheat to earn 5% extra? And I am sure a petrol pump owner would also have other businesses in place. There are very few who have this as their sole source of income.
As it is apart from this calculation the guy dispensing fuel plays his own tricks, so we get even less than the 9xx ml which is quoted here.

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True that. We always knew that there was something shady going on. But coming out in the public and trying to justify that is a bit hard to digest.
I always thought that something was done by rigging the dispensers. there is no way to prove it though. Perhaps only those who over rig/ fix the quantity are caught then?
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