Tuesday, November 17, 2009

How I'd Improve Gas Station Pumps

Why must pumping gas be such an ugly, messy, and industrial affair? I have yet to find a pump that puts the consumer experience first. This needs to change.

I understand that because the nozzle tip is going into a gas tank, it needs to be plain metal, but there's no need for me to see it. I propose adding a retractable outer shell over the metal end that collapses as you put the nozzle into the gas tank. When the nozzle is removed from the tank, the outer shell would re-cover the nozzle and catch gas drops. Just imagine, no more gas drops on your shoes.

The retractable cover is based on advanced collapsible pink cup technology.

The lever that's pulled to allow gas to flow is very unappealing. It's A barren 3-inch metal strip that may or may not lock into position for hands-free pouring. I think there should be a button on the outside that you press once to get the gas flowing. Like its metal brethren, the button would return to its original place when the tank is full. This would make the nozzle piece sleeker.

With my improvements, this won't happen again!

All pump stations should ask if you want a receipt before pumping. There's nothing a driver wants to do less after returning the pump than answer whether or not a receipt is needed. I only want to sanitize my hands after dealing with gas and be on my way. Sure, people could just use gas gloves, but why make the gas pumper purchase protective equipment when that won't be necessary with these changes.

Gas gloves, like this one for U.S. Patent US6643846, won't be needed if I have my way.

With any revolutionary idea like this one, there are some hurdles in the way. There's the cost of designing a prototype, let alone a mass produced version. Building new pumps and retrofitting current models requires hours of work and manufacturing logistics. Selling station owners on the idea is hard because they might have to increase their prices by a few cents. I think customers won't mind the price if it means a guaranteed 100% clean gas pumping experience.

For clean gas pumping you can either hire me as a consultant to implement my idea or drive to New Jersey and Ohio to have someone pump for you. Who says New Jersey isn't high class?

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