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Does Your Teenager Know How to Pump Gas?

The experience of your teenage kid starting to drive can be stressful for a parent.

We worry about their driving skills and safety, and we spend some time teaching them about it and discussing the topic.

However, some more technical details like changing the tire or even how to pump gas are often left out of these conversations.

Some kids learn the hard way that they lack the knowledge to do these tasks.

Often, this means they’re left stranded at the most inconvenient time.

We’ve all seen those funny videos or memes. So let’s ensure our teens don’t end up like this poor girl in the video below:

Here are 5 steps that you need to know when pumping gas.

1. Know Where The Gas Tank Is.

For some reason, the gas tank is not always on the driver’s side.

So you need to ask your teen to check on which side of the car the gas tank is located.

Did you know that there is a gas tank indicator arrow on your vehicle’s dashboard?

The arrow will point to the side of the car where the gas tank is located.

Your teen should also practice pulling up close enough so that the nozzle will reach their car to pump gas.

teach teen how to tank gas

2. Know How To Pay For Gas.

Your teen should not only practice filling up the car but also how to pay.

It’s always a good idea to have a credit or debit card when filling up your tank.

But what if you don’t have enough money for a full tank?

Show them that they can put in a full dollars at a time.

Remember that they will have to go inside and pay the clerk first before they can pump gas.

3. Know The Different Types Of Gas.

Your teen should know if they’re driving a car that requires diesel or gas.

Most cars will use gas, but there are different grades as well to choose from.

Explain the difference between these and also show them which nozzle’s are for which, so that they don’t accidentally use the wrong one.

And we’re assuming they’re not driving an electric car but if they are, then that obviously brings a whole new set of questions to answer.

4. Know How To Use The Nozzle.

The first time filling up the car can be a bit scary but they only need to practice once to know how to use the nozzle.

Let them practice filling up a full tank, where the nozzle will automatically shut of when the tank is full.

And also show them how to just pump small amounts of gas at a time.

5. Don’t Forget To Put The Gas Cap Back On.

It’s such an easy thing to forget, but pretty important. So remind your teen to always put the gas cap back on.

A loose or broken gas cap can dramatically reduce fuel efficiency and increase emissions.

In some vehicles, the “check engine” light will come on if the gas cap has been left off.

Your teen should know that if they see this light come on, it could be that they’ve forgotten to screw the gas cap back on.

pump gas

Key Takeaways:

  • There’s an arrow near the dashboard gas gauge that shows what side the gas tank is on.
  • Your teen should learn which grade of fuel is appropriate for your vehicle.
  • When done, it is easy to forget to screw the gas cap back on.


Here’s a great video to watch with your teen before going to practice for themselves.

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How To Teach Your Teenager To Drive