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Love the Capless Fuel Filler - 2016 Honda Pilot Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,126
edited December 2015 in Honda
imageLove the Capless Fuel Filler - 2016 Honda Pilot Long-Term Road Test

What does our long-term 2016 Honda Pilot have in common with our long-term Ford Mustang GT?

Read the full story here


Comments

  • As long as the technology works reliably (no idea whether it whether it does or not), I think that should be the standard for all vehicles going forward. With emissions control systems of today, all it takes is for your gas cap to be slightly not-tight-enough and it'll trigger a SES light which will freak you out until you reset it or go to a parts store to reset it. I keep an OBD reader in my Miata just for this purpose - it happens that often enough. I also had an issue (while trying to "fix" the problem) with replacing the factory one with a 3rd party filler cap... only it stuck out just slightly. When I slammed the filler door closed, it put a dimple in the filler door. DOH!
  • daryleasondaryleason TexasPosts: 501
    This is sort of related, so we'll pretend I'm still on topic. My '89 Suburban has the fuel filler on the right side of the vehicle (Passenger side). My F-150 has it on the left side (Driver's side). Now, I hate it on the passenger side. For one, that means I have to walk around the vehicle to go fill it up. It's an absolutely crappy place to put it. In fact, it's in the opposite corner of the vehicle from where the driver sits. It's like the engineers decided to place the fuel door in a location to make the driver have to walk as far as possible. Sure, if I have a passenger in the vehicle, theoretically, they could get out and get gas. But that normally doesn't happen. So has anyone got a clue WHY some car designers decided to put the fuel door on the passenger side of a vehicle? It would maybe make sense if the home market was right hand drive. Or if they sold more right hand drive vehicles than left hand drive.

    On an ancillary note, I actually miss the centrally located "behind the license plate" fuel filler. Sure, you ran the risk of the car exploding upon impact from being rear-ended. But come on, you're not going to live forever. Plus, it was equal distance from the pump, not matter which side was facing the pump. As it is, half the time I pull in with the wrong side of the vehicle by the pump. And since they're both trucks, I'm not doing the "I'll drag the hose around" routine.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    edited December 2015
    I guess you know about the little indicator on most fuel gauges that tells you which side of the car the gas cap is on. That's saved me a lot of grief over the years, especially when my last two cars had, like yours, fillers on opposite sides from each other.


  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    edited December 2015
    stever said:

    I guess you know about the little indicator on most fuel gauges that tells you which side of the car the gas cap is on. That's saved me a lot of grief over the years, especially when my last two cars had, like yours, fillers on opposite sides from each other.


    Honestly I did not know until today, what that little arrow meant !!
    Thanks for letting us know about it. One learns new things every day !
    My wife's Subaru Forester has the filler on the passenger side.and my Toyota and Hyundai on the left side .
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    Yep, my oddball car was a Subaru Outback with the filler on the passenger side.
  • daryleasondaryleason TexasPosts: 501
    stever said:

    I guess you know about the little indicator on most fuel gauges that tells you which side of the car the gas cap is on. That's saved me a lot of grief over the years, especially when my last two cars had, like yours, fillers on opposite sides from each other.


    @stever : Yeah, I know it's there for that. Unfortunately, it doesn't mean I remember to check. Frankly, you'd think I'd remember based on what vehicle I'm in. But habits die hard. Plus, I've admitted in an idiot sometimes.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    It only took me 55 years to catch on. B)

    Now that I'm in my 60s, I've found that it also helps to cut back to one car.
  • ebeaudoinebeaudoin NE IllinoisPosts: 509
    The only downside to these is buying a car with a capless fuel filler pre-owned. I work at a Honda dealer. I took a 2013 Ford Focus S 5MT out for a spin to see how it was. Ran out of gas and had to have a co-worker come gas me up. When we opened the filler door and found no cap (capless fillers do not allow anything but a gas station pump to enter) we figured out we would need to use the adapter in the trunk. This particular Focus did not have the adapter; the previous owner must have kept it when they traded it in. Fortunately, a 2012 Focus back at the dealership still had one, so we used that.

    It's a minor niggle, but one to consider nonetheless.
  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    ebeaudoin said:

    The only downside to these is buying a car with a capless fuel filler pre-owned. I work at a Honda dealer. I took a 2013 Ford Focus S 5MT out for a spin to see how it was. Ran out of gas and had to have a co-worker come gas me up. When we opened the filler door and found no cap (capless fillers do not allow anything but a gas station pump to enter) we figured out we would need to use the adapter in the trunk. This particular Focus did not have the adapter; the previous owner must have kept it when they traded it in. Fortunately, a 2012 Focus back at the dealership still had one, so we used that.

    It's a minor niggle, but one to consider nonetheless.

    That is a deal breaker for me, I many times use a funnel or the bottles of fuel system cleaner to put in my tank.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 14,993
    Our first vehicle with the capless filler was a 2009 Escape. I've gotten pretty used to it since then.
    No more broken tethers. If you want to add fuel system cleaner or preservative, just use the adapter(basically a proprietary funnel).
    2019 Lincoln MKZ Reserve 1, TBD
  • ... So has anyone got a clue WHY some car designers decided to put the fuel door on the passenger side of a vehicle? ... .

    One explanation is that it's the packaging of the vehicle -- drive train and fuel tank positions -- that dictate where the fuel door goes. I've also encountered a historical explanation. If you are on the side of the road and out of gas, it is safer to fill it with a gas can from the right side, away from traffic. But in some countries, the right side can be a cliff with nothing to stop you from tumbling down as you try to refill your vehicle. In that case, the automakers put the gas cap on the left.
  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    edited December 2015

    ... So has anyone got a clue WHY some car designers decided to put the fuel door on the passenger side of a vehicle? ... .

    One explanation is that it's the packaging of the vehicle -- drive train and fuel tank positions -- that dictate where the fuel door goes. I've also encountered a historical explanation. If you are on the side of the road and out of gas, it is safer to fill it with a gas can from the right side, away from traffic. But in some countries, the right side can be a cliff with nothing to stop you from tumbling down as you try to refill your vehicle. In that case, the automakers put the gas cap on the left.
    My 2 pence, Japanese cars are made for the Right hand drive market predominantly , like Japan, Australia/NZ/ UK so they prefer to have it on the passenger side for us and driver side for them, thus standardizing thier assembly line for export to both Left and Right hand drive markets. Subaru is one glaring example,. example like above of cliffs and a big drop to the ocean on the passenger side is Highway 1 in California which hugs the coast, called the pacific coastal highway., from LA to San Francisco
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    edited December 2015
    “The placement of the fuel door is mainly a factor of fuel tank design, location and underbody packaging,” Nissan’s Steve Yaeger wrote in an email. “With all of the structure and components located underneath the vehicle, (engineers) would quickly encounter restrictions in trying to route the filler tube to the same side on every vehicle.”

    Gas Tanks: Why Aren’t All Fuel Doors on the Same Side? (allstate.com)

    All the other theories sound good (although some seem a bit urban legendish too me), but as always, follow the money. My gut tells me the tank will go on the side that's cheapest to manufacture, at least in the US where no regs require placement on the left or right side. That decision may be influenced by where the exhaust goes or for other safety reasons, but it it's cheaper to put it on the right, that's where the filler will go.
  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    More then the side of the fuel filler, I have struggled to find the lever to open the filler door whenever I have rented cars. :open_mouth:
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    On my recent car rental, it took the agent a minute, but he took the time to find it and point it out to me while he was going over the "dent list" with me.
  • daryleasondaryleason TexasPosts: 501
    Since people have mentioned the fuel release lever/button on cars...anyone else felt the frustration of dealing with a car that has that and it doesn't work? Or the stupid release is in the glove box. Because, yeah, it's great to have to lean over to the passenger side, open the glove box, find the button, release the trunk, swear, reach back in, release the fuel door, get out, shut the trunk, open the fuel door, and get gas. If the release doesn't work, then it's a case of use the car key as a pry bar to force the fuel door open, get gas, then spend five minutes slamming the fuel door shut until it finally catches from where you pried it. Or, you can leave it "loose" and let it flap in the wind.
  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760

    Since people have mentioned the fuel release lever/button on cars...anyone else felt the frustration of dealing with a car that has that and it doesn't work? Or the stupid release is in the glove box. Because, yeah, it's great to have to lean over to the passenger side, open the glove box, find the button, release the trunk, swear, reach back in, release the fuel door, get out, shut the trunk, open the fuel door, and get gas. If the release doesn't work, then it's a case of use the car key as a pry bar to force the fuel door open, get gas, then spend five minutes slamming the fuel door shut until it finally catches from where you pried it. Or, you can leave it "loose" and let it flap in the wind.

    I have a car where there is no release button. Just press the filler door once and it pops open. To close just click it shut.
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