Why even sell nitrogen at a gas pump, you may ask?
Because there is this new “inflation” wave (quite literally) that has hit some gas stations across the United States… a wave where car owners are inflating their tires with nitrogen gas, instead of air.
Does this sound interesting and?
Then keep reading…
Since the very old days, we have been used to inflating tires with compressed air. It has been a standard and norm that is practiced worldwide.
But recently, a new trend has emerged (not sure whether we should call it a trend or an inflating vogue), where people have started filling their tires with compressed nitrogen gas.
Because nitrogen-filled tires can go longer without needing a refill. In simpler words, nitrogen-filled tires maintain pressure for far longer than air-filled tires.
Nitrogen molecules are larger in size than air molecules, and since they are larger in size, they are also less susceptible to permeation and leaks.
So, should you sell nitrogen gas at your gas pump?
No doubt nitrogen has its advantages. With tire pressure maintained for a longer period of time, your customers won’t have to refill their tires frequently. This should apparently help them save money on refilling jobs.
But, it cannot be denied that nitrogen is also more expensive than compressed air.
Filling a tire with nitrogen costs $4 a minimum. While you can get all your four tires refilled with air for just $1.
So does the saving actually translate into “savings”, or “significant” savings for your customer?
According to Toyota, air-filled tires can maintain pressure for a month before needing a refill. Of course, this varies depending on the condition of your tires.
Nitrogen-filled tires, on the other hand, can maintain pressure for up to 3 months.
If you do the math, it’s pretty clear that even though nitrogen-filled tires require less frequent refills, there aren’t any real savings for your customers when filling their tires with compressed nitrogen gas.
Selling nitrogen at your gas station may sound like an idea where you can earn more money ($4 for a tire refill as compared to $1), but your customers aren’t really saving any money by choosing to go nitro.
In conclusion, you don’t really need to sell nitrogen gas at your gas station… at least not yet. However, if in the future the price of nitrogen drops, you can definitely explore the idea. There’s no first-mover advantage here so you can afford the wait.
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