S’poreans Caught on Camera Shaking Car At JB So They’ll Save More On Petrol

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So, this is a thing: Singaporeans like to refill their fuel tanks in Johor Bahru to take advantage of the favourable exchange rate.

Which makes petrol in Malaysia about 3 times cheaper than petrol in Singapore, give or take.

And even more apparently, this is also a thing: shaking cars to get more fuel in. And it seems to be common in Singapore and nowhere else, at least as far as the Internet is concerned.

So when you combine both of these, you get hoards of Singaporeans shaking and rocking their cars overseas every year, trying to fill every last bit of space in their tanks.

And people have caught it on video

This clip, in particular, is a great way to exemplify the preamble because it features not 1, not 628, but 4 of our countrymen collaborating in earnest to shimmy all that precious (and cheap) petrol into their car.

In the video, two of the men carried out the hard labour (the shaking and tilting) while one did the refilling and the last one kept watch on the tank.

If all that hustling actually yields results then maybe we shouldn’t be laughing at them.

Image: Brightest Young Things

The Best Way To Pump Petrol

Vincent Emmanuel Lee, the Director of Mister Garageon (so an expert in the field), had addressed this on Talking Point, a Channel NewsAsia show.

When petrol is pumped into your car fuel tank, foam and vapour are formed, which takes up space.

So instead of shaking the boat (or in this case, the car), you’re better off waiting for a while for them to disappear.

Then, continue.

But Then Again, It Worked for Some of Them

However, lots of people claim to have empirical evidence that this does work from their own personal experiences. It was explained that rocking the vehicle may dislodge bubbles that get trapped due to the shape of the gas tank.

Therefore, the verdict reached was… it depends.

Lee is correct to say that rocking your vehicle does not give you more fuel provided your fuel tank has a flat top where the air is not trapped.


However, there are some fuel tanks that don’t have said flat top, and no matter how long you wait, the foam and bubbles will not dissipate.

The tank has to be tilted at a certain angle for the trapped air to escape.

What’s there to lose?

So it does work sometimes, why doesn’t everyone just go ahead and do it then?

Well, shaking your car might not harm it but filling up your fuel tank to the brim? That’ll hurt you in the long run.

The expert, Lee said filling your car fuel tank to the brim might lead to petrol going into the evacuation system.


Which is way more expensive than saving on that few dollars of petrol.

However, other sources (such as the Netizens below) opine that it does wear out the suspension.

Public opinion

Actually, the local Netizens aren’t as concerned about whether it actually works or not. A lot of them are disproving of the extent to which their fellow Singaporeans are willing to go to save that extra buck.

In other words, it’s about having self-respect and dignity especially in another country, not about being too dumb to know whether shaking the car lets you maximise your fuel capacity.

Of course, there are other opinions as well. You can read the entertaining comments yourself, or view some of the responses in the following screenshots.


Credits: Screenshot from All Singapore Stuff (Facebook)

Credits: Screenshot from All Singapore Stuff (Facebook)

It’s a good lesson really, don’t stoop so low in your quest to be as miserly as you can. Or do it at home if you must.

But then again, STOMP has eyes everywhere. Oh well. *shrugs*

And by the way, you’re not supposed to leave Singapore with less than 3/4 tank. So maybe you should just do what your enick said in the army: “Don’t test the system.”

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