Off Topic

My Latest Invention Idea

By Ron Pereira Updated on July 13th, 2007

I often come up with some great invention ideas only to find out someone already thought of it. Well, this morning when I was filling my car up with gas I thought of one I am almost sure no one has thought of.

Introducing Vacuum while you Fill Up

When filling up with gas many people like to clean all the trash out of their car, right? Some even wash their windows with the little squeegee.

Well, how about offering the customer access to a free vacuum while they pump their gas? The idea would be that as long as the gas is pumping the vacuum would run. This is important or some would likely stay at the pump even after their car was full of gas.

I have a Toyota Corolla and it only takes a few minutes to fill up. Still, I know I could quickly vacuum most of my car if I hustled.

Also, for safety reasons, the vacuum hose would need to be retractable so people couldn’t run over them with their cars.

Why gas stations will likely pass

The biggest challenge I see with this idea is most gas stations make their money by having people come in to buy some food or a drink, or so I have heard. So if people are busy with a vacuum in their hand they may not come into the store as much which could hurt profits.

Still, this idea would delight me and I would be willing to even pay a few extra cents per gallon for this feature. I suppose you could even charge 25~50 cents (paid via debit card) to vacuum… but I like free better.

Jeesh, my lawyer is probably going to be mad at me for blogging about this! I mean if this is really a good idea I should probably be applying for the patent instead of spilling the beans on my blog!

So, let this post serve as my official declaration to the “vacuum while you pump your gas” invention idea!

Ron Pereira
Friday, July 13, 2007

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  1. Gary Petersen

    July 13, 2007 - 7:15 pm

    My suspicion would be concern over an electrical motor running in the same area as gasoline fumes. Methinks that would be enough to scare most folks off, from a potential liability standpoint. If I recall correctly, the warning labels at some pumps even tell you to turn your cell phones off while pumping gas.

  2. Ron Pereira

    July 13, 2007 - 7:22 pm

    Hmmm… good point Gary. Come on lean and six sigma thinkers I need help getting past this issue. They say we can’t innovate so let’s prove them wrong. But, I… ummm… ain’t got a clue. Oh no, maybe they are right about us!

  3. Jay Reynolds

    July 13, 2007 - 7:31 pm

    Gary is probably right.

    But what’s stopping us from putting the motors underground or something so there would be no risk.

    Gary, what say you?

  4. Gary Petersen

    July 13, 2007 - 7:38 pm

    Hey, if they can do whole-house vacuums where you just plug the hose into the outlet, why not a whole-convenience store vacuum system!

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