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Is it true that fuel tank gas caps are being discontinued?

I heard this over Thanksgiving dinner, someone said that people were complaining to their dealerships about the check engine light coming on when they have simply forgotten to tighten the gas cap, and causing them to worry needlessly about a problem that needn’t be worried about. And the expense of having it checked by a mechanic etc.

So the sol’n they tell me is many manufacturers intend to eliminate the gas cap! Seriously, I’m not making this up. I guess they’ll have some kind of automatic gagdet that opens when you fuel the car and closes when you remove the nozzle , but no more gas cap that you take off.

Anybody else hear this? It sounds like a very complicated solution to a simple to solve problem ; i.e. just provide a way for the driver to know that the CEL is on because of a gas cap problem, and not some other problem.

My 2011 Ford product has no cap, just a door. Works fine.

I had a 2012 Lincoln MKX with the gas filler tube seal integrated into the gas fill door as a rental. I liked it, too.

It’s kind of like a spring loaded flap that you push in with the fuel nozzle. I think Ford made the switch in 2010. That’s the first model I saw one on. I have seen them as screw on replacements on earlier cars too. I suspect they are available from your local parts supplier.

It doesn’t really affect me much as I’ve always just put an oily rag in my gas filler neck.

Seriously, you can always get gas caps. I’ve bought new gas caps for cars that are over a half century old.

It is true. However, as someone said, the stopper/cap is built into the gas door.

Newfangled cars. Finding solutions to questions nobody asked, I think.

Actually, the spring loaded flip door is part of the filler neck. Nothing much on the door, and since the door doesn’t lock it doesn’t seal. (note updated description)

Years ago, our neighbors had a 1949 Nash Ambassador with a electromagnetic gas cap. All you did was press a button on the dashboard and the gas cap flipped open. After the tank was filled, you just pushed the cap back down. I don’t see that this new fangled system is any better than the system from 63 years ago.

@RemcoW
Newfangled cars. Finding solutions to questions nobody asked,

seems akin to medicines designed to cure made up illnesses.

@Triedaq Wow, one little spark from the electromagnet and POOF. Big POOF. They must have discontinued it after '49 as neither one of my '50 Nashes has that. Do you suppose it was a JC Whitney option?

@meaneyedcatz I don’t think it was a question no one asked as the loose fuel fuel caps of the past were often the cause of an unnecessary MIL. With the spring loaded flap, there will never be a loose cap. With time, there will probably a lot of degraded rubber seals and MILs to go with them. I hope they make easy cheap replacements.

I’ve still got gas caps but the message pops up telling you to check the cap. No big deal either way I guess.

@MG McAnick–this was a factory option and there was even a labeled place for the switch on the dashboard. If the Nash didn’t have this option, it had a blank inserted where the switch would go. I think it was still offered in 1950 on the Statesman and Ambassador. There was a roll-up plastic panel on the dashboard that revealed the secondary controls and I believe the switch or place for the switch to open the gas cap was there.

Haven’t bought a car in so long…that will be the farthest from my mind when I do. As the driving public gets more incompetent, me included with age, I guess these features become more worthwhile. Personally, a free station attendant I could trust would be a better feature. I could let my fat “asteroid” settle a little more.

It been happening at ford for a while now from 2006

http://www.fordmuscle.com/2006/08/ford-to-eliminate-gas-caps/

I just filled up, looked at the door - it’s just a door, nothing special. It doesn’t do anything as far as containing the gas is concerned. It’s all with the flip valve.

You are correct. Last two rental cars I rented, they had no gas cap. Seems to work great. Just purchased a new gas cap for my 98 Jeep, because every time I filled up with gas the check engine light came on and the code said small emission leak. After getting the light turned off 3 times I finally talked to the right mechanic and he told me it was the gas cap. I will keep you posted if the light stays off.

Cargirlmaybe, Should The Light Come Back (Same DTC), Make Sure The Filler Neck Where The Cap Seal Contacts It Is Free Of Rust And Contamination. Clean It Until It’s Smooth. Don’t Make Any Sparks, Though. Spray The Neck And Cap Seal With WD-40.

Been there, done that,
CSA

Seems to me that with a gas cap, if it stops working, you can buy a new one for $15. And you’ll never have a problem finding one, even if you break down in a small town during a family vacation. On the other hand, if these automatic gas-cap gadgets stop working and prevent refueling while you are on a family holiday in the same small town, you may be looking at a $350 repair, or a long tow if a repair isn’t possible in that town, and you may have to wait for a day or two or even longer to get the replacement part. It sounds like people who’ve used cars with these devices like them ok, but I just don’t see the need for the complications and expenses that it may lead to. Just because something is possible to do, that’s not a reason to do it.

whay’s to break down? The rubber seal is just on the door, not on a screw on cap. And it shouldn’t cost more.