Water In Gas - I Need (Legal?) Advice - Mercedes GLA Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 07-24-2019, 08:41 AM Thread Starter
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Water In Gas - I Need (Legal?) Advice

I have a 2018 GLA45 with roughly 2400 miles on it. I was getting misfire codes and brought it to the dealer. They replaced an injector that was leaking and thought it should be fixed. CEL came on the next time I drove the car, so I brought it back to the dealer again. This time after replacing spark plugs and a fuel pump, they also found water in the gas. The parts (and related labor) were covered under warranty, but it cost me over $1000 to correct it for the labor that wasn't covered by warranty due to gas in the water.

Does anyone have experience with this situation? I'm wondering what the best approach is when I go to the gas station to try get them to pay for the cost that their crappy gas caused. I know sometimes there are certain keywords that can trigger a specific response in a situation like this. I' not sure how to take the first step?

I do NOT have a receipt for the gas, and I purchased it over 6 weeks ago. The car is rarely driven (I work from home) and has spent the last 3 weeks at the dealer, so this has dragged on for a while. I do have my bank statement that shows the gas purchase, but that's it. Not sure if they would have security video footage of me pumping the gas from 6 weeks ago? The gas station is a BP that has 93 octane, and it's the only gas station near my house that has 93 so it's the only one I've been to.

It seems like an impossibility that they would be willing to listen to me and actually pay for my repair costs, but it's $1000 so I at least have to try! Any advice on how to approach them would be great!

Thanks in advance!

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post #2 of 17 Old 07-24-2019, 03:24 PM
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Man sorry to see this happen. I would definitely try to fight for $1000 but I sense there are so many moving parts to this that it would take a long time and maybe require you to spend more money to try and get back that money. You would have to prove that the specific gas from that station had the contaminated fuel that caused the damage to your car. Is the gas station a local one or a large franchise like Mobil, BP etc. Perhaps taking it to the owner could scare them into doing something about it , with you stating they are selling inferior vehicle damaging gas. Good luck.

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post #3 of 17 Old 07-24-2019, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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I know, it seems like how could I ever possibly prove anything right? Definitely not going to be easy. Wish I had a lawyer friend that could go in and have a chat with them on my behalf, ha ha ha!

It was a BP station, so at least a major brand. I've been buying the 93 there for about 7 years now without issue, in 3 different vehicles. But recently the new gas station across the street has been gaining popularity, and the BP in question has been going downhill. In the last year or two it has gotten so that at times it looks abandoned when no customers are there. Kind of falling apart.

I had one friend suggest that I go get a sample of the gas now (6 weeks after the issue though) and see if there's still water in it. That might be persuasive evidence as well. I just need to grab a good sized glass container and wait for it settle out for a few minutes. Unfortunately the 10% ethanol makes it much more difficult to detect though.

I think the recent run-down nature of the business indicates new management, and that they are only interested in cutting corners to maximize profit. Those kind of people never like to admit fault, and never try make things right just on principle. It would likely take a court case to get anywhere with them, but I will at least go try.

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post #4 of 17 Old 07-25-2019, 08:57 AM
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See if you can find out if anyone else had a problem with the gas there having water. Ask around friends and neighbors. If other had a problem gives you some legs to stand on.

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post #5 of 17 Old 07-25-2019, 09:53 AM
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Agreed. Strength in numbers.

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See if you can find out if anyone else had a problem with the gas there having water. Ask around friends and neighbors. If other had a problem gives you some legs to stand on.

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post #6 of 17 Old 07-25-2019, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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Update: I took the first steps.

No one else in my neighborhood uses 93, so no luck on that one. But I did go talk to the manager at the store. I had all the documentation I could find. At first they were very defensive, but I'm pretty good at diffusing tension, so we quickly got past that stage and began to work together effectively.

I asked if they've had any reports in the last 2 months for water in the gas, they said no, and they have a LOT of Corvettes and motorcycles come there for the 93 octane, and the main storage tank is refilled regularly.

They also have water sensors in the storage tanks, and print out reports of the water levels at least once per day for each tank. Those reports are saved. They printed a current report on the spot, and showed it to me. They also went to the office and pulled the records for the days before, during, and after when I purchased the gas. All the reports showed a water level of zero in the 93 octane tank, including the previous time I put gas in there a week earlier. The cheapo gas showed .77 inches of water in the tank, and says it amounts 12 gallons. So assuming the sensor in the 93 tank is functioning correctly, they have records showing that no water is present before or after my gas purchase. :/

The manager was very pleasant and helpful and is filing an official incident report with the parent company. Now I just wait and see if anything happens I guess? If they do get back to me, I will be sure to ask them how they know if the sensor in the 93 tank is actually functioning properly.

Overall I had no idea what to expect, and I assumed it would be a difficult scenario, but at least the initial contact was positive. Seems unlikely that I'll get anything reimbursed when they have data showing ZERO water levels though.

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post #7 of 17 Old 07-25-2019, 04:51 PM
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Just devils advocate or FWIW, have you ruled out unusual condensation in your GLA's tank? Has not been reported by anyone here, just thinking of other possible sources.

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post #8 of 17 Old 07-25-2019, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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I agree. I'm trying to think of any other possible way water could get in there. The gas station seems unlikely at this point, unless their water sensor is faulty.

I wonder how condensation could get in there?

The car is stored inside a garage at all times too. I work from home, so rarely driven, maybe once or twice a week.

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post #9 of 17 Old 07-25-2019, 07:17 PM
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It is possible that water condensed in your gas tank especially if the gas tank is almost empty and you left it parked for several weeks?

It's bad for the car if left undriven for long periods of time. Go fire it up at least once a week and go for a ride!!!


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Originally Posted by RichZilla View Post
I agree. I'm trying to think of any other possible way water could get in there. The gas station seems unlikely at this point, unless their water sensor is faulty.

I wonder how condensation could get in there?

The car is stored inside a garage at all times too. I work from home, so rarely driven, maybe once or twice a week.

Last edited by GLARUS; 07-25-2019 at 07:19 PM.
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post #10 of 17 Old 07-26-2019, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GLARUS View Post
It is possible that water condensed in your gas tank especially if the gas tank is almost empty and you left it parked for several weeks?

It's bad for the car if left undriven for long periods of time. Go fire it up at least once a week and go for a ride!!!
You are correct the lower the gas in the tank increase the possible condensation. If going to be parked for a long time you need to fill the tank. Suggest you add stabilizer to the gas. Look for one for ethanol.

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