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Perplexing Delaware law

An Illinois resident, I was in Delaware the other day filling up at a local Wawa. I opened the hood to check the oil… and was scolded by a loudspeaker telling me to close my hood. I turned toward the Wawa and asked the obvious question. “Why?” The answer: “It’s a state law.” My next “Why?” was ignored, and I didn’t see the point of pursuing it further at the Wawa counter. For the life of me I just can’t figure out why you’re not allowed to check your oil at a gas station in Delaware. It seems the logical place to do so. Can someone enlighten me?

I doubt it’s a “State Law”…They just want to keep their driveways clean and the pump isles open…

“Finished filling up? Great! Thanks for coming in. You can check your oil and tires over by the dumpster. Have a nice day…”

I wonder what would have happened at the local Wawa if a person drove in with a car that had the hood removed.

Seems like a law that would be difficult to enforce. What if the speaker said to jump off a bridge? Would you obey?

My guess: Delaware has a law prohibiting vehicle repairs in commercial parking lots. Like changing your oil in the Walmart parking lot. Wawa is a convenience store that sells gasoline not a repair facility.I’m not defending the Wawa employee’s attitude, but he could be right.

Adding oil, and changing oil are completely different. Adding oil isn’t a “car repair”. I would like to know exactly what this law is, and I doubt the Wawa clerk is interpreting correctly.

Law? - Doubtful… Company Policy? - Probably

Many years ago when my middle son was 14 we went to Chile’s for dinner. We sat at the bar and the bar tender informed us that it’s state law that minors are not allowed to sit at the bar. Which is total bogus. It’s their policy…but NOT state law.

It could be a state law. When I was vacationing in Oregon several years ago I found out that you can’t pump your own gasoline. It had to be pumped by an employee of the station/foodmart. No exceptions. Indiana had a state law that added the tax to the total after the fuel was pumped. Mike…I think it’s law in most states that minors cannot sit where alcohol is served or gambling is allowed. There are a few exceptions which allow minors to sit at a bar if food is served and accompanied by an adult.

@missleman - I’ve yet to find that state. I know in MA, NH, NY, VT, ME, FL and GA it’s NOT law. May be policy at some restaurants or bars…but NOT law. But an underage child MUST be accompanied by a legal guardian.

“When I was vacationing in Oregon several years ago I found out that you can’t pump your own gasoline. It had to be pumped by an employee of the station/foodmart. No exceptions.”

That is “the law” in NJ also, but I happen to pump my own gas very frequently in this state.
Not only have I never been threated with the long arm of the law, in fact–most times the gas jockey thanks me for doing this.

However, I can’t comment on Oregon. Perhaps that state has special swat teams to deal with felonious gas self-pumpers.
;-))

I would think it would be to the advantage of the Wawa convenience stores to allow motorists to raise the hood and check the oil. If the car is down a quart, more often than not the motorist will go in and buy an overpriced quart of Wawa house brand oil. I remember the days of full service stations where the attendant would check the oil on a fillup. While there were abuses of this where some attendants short-sticked the dipstick and made it look like the car needed a quart, I’ll bet the full service stations saved engine failure for a lot of motorists.

Do the pumps lock on there? If so, maybe Wawa is concerned about someone working under the hood and not noticing an overflowing gas tank.

Not only would the oil sale matter, but those places normally make little to nothing on gasoline. They make their money inside of the store. Anything that gets people through the front doors should be in the interests of the station. Come in for a quart of oil, walk out with 3 sodas, a bag of chips & a pack of beef jerky…and then go back in because you forgot the oil…

I’ve seen countless, countless wierd laws, many very old and obsolete and many brand new. It would not surprise me if what you allude to actually was a state law. Google “wierd laws” and you’ll be amazed at what you find out.

Like the law where you can’t wash your car with used underwear in San Francisco?

Can you wash it with NEW underwear?

About the only thing I can think of is the hood might block the view of other cars at the pump. If that’s not the case then I can’t see any reason for closing your hood. I doubt very much it is state law. Take your business somewhere else next time in DE.

Haven’t been to Delaware and I’m about to goolgle that law question…
–BUT–
I have been in Oregon and was almost attacked by the attendant…“STEP AWAY FROM THE PUMP” as though I was about to light it on fire or something.
This absolutely flabergasted me, who comes from an area of ALL self serve . 'round these parts you can’t find full service to save your life. Even grandma in the next aisle has to ask us co-pumpers for help…and she always gets 2 or 3 eager helpers.

Last time I was in New Jersey they still had a law preventing you from pumping your own gas, but I was driving a semi at the time, and we professionals were allowed to dispense our own fuel.

Should I flag my own post at “off-topic?”

Next time I’d just say, “so call the cops on me” and see what happens. It would be pretty much worth a misdemeanor ticket in my opinion.