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Is this Leslieville gas station selling watered down fuel?

Posted by Derek Flack / April 30, 2014

Neon Gas Station TorontoThere's drama brewing in Leslieville over what some drivers claim is watered down gas being sold at the Neon Station. According to an investigative report from Global News, numerous customers have reported engine difficulty after filling up at Neon, which is located at Queen and Curzon streets. Sputtering engines and costly repair bills have raised the ire of the drivers who allege that Neon's fuel has damaged their vehicles.

Global makes a fairly compelling case that something's not right at the station, but a water detection test undertaken in the wake of customer complaints came up negative. The Technical Standards and Safety Authority did, however, order the the station replace part of its fuel system after the inspection. In the absence of concrete evidence of water in the tanks, it remains a he said-she said scenario, but caveat emptor.

Photo by Mark Susina



Water into beer / April 30, 2014 at 01:33 pm
A buck six? Ye olde photo.
TJ / April 30, 2014 at 01:56 pm
Another reason why you don't want to fill up at a no name one-off independent gas station that looks like it is in dire need of replacement.
jaaaaaaaaaaat / April 30, 2014 at 02:00 pm
what is gas
Steven / April 30, 2014 at 02:06 pm
If the price seems too good to be true... there's always a catch.
Energy Boners / April 30, 2014 at 02:21 pm
Sketch at Curzon and Queen? You don't say.
Leslie Ville / April 30, 2014 at 02:24 pm
Tear it down, Put up a condo
Rick / April 30, 2014 at 02:32 pm
Leslieville hipsters drive? Who knew?!
Haha / April 30, 2014 at 02:32 pm
Serves them right for driving. We need to punish, not help drivers.
Greg / April 30, 2014 at 02:35 pm
wow, so you're "warning" people about what has proven to be a non-issue (via testing) ... to what end? To destroy a small business by scaring locals into not filling up here by using hearsay? Not cool, guys.

Chester / April 30, 2014 at 02:37 pm

Jeff replying to a comment from TJ / April 30, 2014 at 02:42 pm
Except for the fact that ALL gas comes from the same place and same storage tanks. Could they water down post delivery, Yes, but that would be rather malice and risky, with a heightened chance of being caught.
Neon Gas Station / April 30, 2014 at 02:43 pm
Hey everyone, this is John from Neon Gas. I urge you to boycott Blog TO for this highly unethical "news" story based only on conjecture.

As stated in the article we have done rigorous testing and have found problems with our gas tanks. We suspect this "rumour" has been started by a disgruntled ex-employee who vowed to "destroy" us after we were forced to fire him/her.

Please do not believe the nonsense in this article. As a thanks to you we will be offering prizes at the station for your loyalty.

Also, please call me, Mr. Flack, so I can arrange a meeting to punch you in da mouf for doing this to us. Thanks.
Neon Gas Station replying to a comment from Neon Gas Station / April 30, 2014 at 02:44 pm
LOL! I meant to say we "have found *NO* problems with our gas tanks."

Seriously? / April 30, 2014 at 02:50 pm
ummm this article's headline is quite the link bait. With no supporting evidence, you're fueling unsubstantiated rumors. Shame on you BlogTO
Ray / April 30, 2014 at 02:52 pm
There are quite a few people in Leslieville that have had issues with this gas station, it's been an ongoing discussion on the Leslieville facebook group and the stories have been coming to light in droves lately. There's definitely something shady going on at this gas station. Also, that is an old photo, the gas price has been at 139.9 for some time (even when gas was at around 125). I used to get my BBQ propane filled up there, had a chat with the attendant asking how they sold gas at 139.9, almost 15 cents above everywhere else, he just shrugged. Of note, I've also noticed my propane patio heater only lasts about half as long with the tanks filled at the gas station. I've been swapping cylinders at 7/11 now.
Really? / April 30, 2014 at 02:58 pm
This story seems unbelievable ... if they are/were watering down the gas, and it caused immediate car problems like those mentioned in the Global article, wouldn't Neon Gas have cars breaking down in their station on a daily, if not hourly, basis?
Disagree / April 30, 2014 at 02:58 pm
Also, please call me, Mr. Flack, so I can arrange a meeting to punch you in da mouf for doing this to us. Thanks. - VERY PROFESSIONAL

I have heard more complaints about this place in recent history than anywhere else and I'm going to choose to believe those who spent 100's and 1000's repairing their cars then this very professional Neon Gas worker.

Here is first hand with a comment below saying they experienced it to. When someone posted this to a facebook page there were more than enough people who had all experienced these issues after filling up there.
I lived in Leslieville 15 years ago... / April 30, 2014 at 03:03 pm
Leslieville fights hard to keep the Corporate Chain businesses out but now their fighting the small business owner over an unproven allegation.

A business that has been serving the community since before Leslieville became so hip and popular is now being threatened over a rumor?
mario / April 30, 2014 at 03:05 pm
Could be the station could be the cars. Cars get problems on their own as well. Once one person said they had car problems valid or not from this station it's easy for everyone else to start going, "you know what I had car problems on Saturday as well......
scottd / April 30, 2014 at 03:06 pm
Sure go down the hole of repeating rumours and see where that leads you.
grant / April 30, 2014 at 03:10 pm
The Global News story seems to be a more accurate account.

A mechanic told her it was due to water in the tank.

Condensation does occur in your gas tank
Douglas J. Neon, Neon Gas replying to a comment from Disagree / April 30, 2014 at 03:11 pm
yeah like anyone should listen to a dingus named Ben Ferguson lol
Leslieville / April 30, 2014 at 03:41 pm
Finally we can get and Esso with a Tim Hortons and Wendy's on Queen Street East. It's long over due Bring on the Esso & Timmies!!!
Jacques Strappe replying to a comment from Leslieville / April 30, 2014 at 03:56 pm
Tim Horton's is pure garbage. Why would you want that?
E. Toby Coke / April 30, 2014 at 03:57 pm
Water and gasoline don't mix. Gasoline goes to the top and heavier water settles on the bottom.

How does one water down gasoline without causing cumulative problems in their own storage tanks?

Seems like an unlikely idea.

keven / April 30, 2014 at 03:58 pm
Clearly someone is trying to get this sweet piece of land. BlogTO should be ashamed of itself for reporting this.
Rick / April 30, 2014 at 04:26 pm
This place is bye-bye now, thats for sure. You got to be unwell in the head to get gas from here in the first place. Now there is a legit reason to kiss this dump goodbye!!
Farley replying to a comment from Farley / April 30, 2014 at 05:01 pm
Derek, my apologizes to the flack name.
John, you're still a douche.
Vinnie replying to a comment from Rick / April 30, 2014 at 05:04 pm
what "legit reason", Rick-the-dick?? Hearsay and conjecture?
toronto dude / April 30, 2014 at 05:07 pm
Seems to be a legitimate question BTo and the rest of the blogs are asking. There just seems to be way too many anecdotes about incidents for there not to be something going on now and/or in the past well above and beyond 1 disgruntled ex-employee.

BTo published this story which generated 30 comments in only 8 hours or so...not bad...not bad at all. We are showing BTo that we are interested in more of these.
MM replying to a comment from Steven / April 30, 2014 at 05:09 pm
Actually they were on CityNews last week for charging .20 more on average per litre compared to other stations in the City.

It really didn't help their case to call the cops on Global, or to flip off the camera as they drove away.
Wendel / April 30, 2014 at 06:26 pm
Usually crooked stations Wil add used dry cleaner fluid and other waste products they obtained for nothing and mixed with a large volume of gasoline go undetected unless tests are performed to detect those impurities or they get too greedy and add too much causing many engine problems and it's a matter of time before the sourse is traced. Several stations in the U.S. have been caught doing this. HOWEVER , in this case no water was found and I am sure they tested for other impurities so without EVIDENCE of wrong doing no one should be pointing fingers at anyone.
Go to another gas station if you want to believe rumors and unsubstantiated claims against this gas station. Keep in mind that water accumulates in gas tanks and especially with diesel fueled vehicles. Had a diesel rabbit that was notorious for this and I would add half a pint of ethol alcohol to evaporate the water in the tank periodically.
James / April 30, 2014 at 07:10 pm
If Neons gas is higher than surrounding stations you have the option of going elsewhere. If Neon doing something illegal as is being suggested with watered down gasoline then proof is required ! Testing the fuel has shown no evidence of any tampering with the fuel supply hence these accusations are without merit and are based on rumours and not facts. Even if there was water in the tank this is not unheard of and the result of condensation whitch also occurs in all fuel tanks to a degree. But suggesting the station operator is purposely adding water is a serious accusation and has not been proven so let's put this to bed shall we.
Johnny / April 30, 2014 at 07:12 pm
They're not deliberately watering down the gas. The premium tank is compromised/failing, and water is seeping in. They just refuse to admit that it's a problem.
As for the TSSA, those guys seem to be completely incompetent. 20 years of complaints and they can't find anything wrong during their 2 inspections? Colour me shocked.
Frank replying to a comment from Haha / April 30, 2014 at 09:21 pm
Yeah, we need to punish the drivers that bring stuff to your local stores so you can walk to buy it. We should punish the drivers that carry their tools to your house to solve your repair issues. We need to punish all the drivers that fight traffic, pay insurance and exorbitant gas prices, to make your cycle to work a little easier every day. Fuckin' drivers.
? / April 30, 2014 at 09:54 pm
Did Sandro Lisi outsmart the mayor? Why is this new video coming out? Who shot it?
east end / April 30, 2014 at 10:58 pm
Every response from NEON has been rude and immature. Not any business I would support.
Dave replying to a comment from east end / April 30, 2014 at 11:36 pm
um, yeah I'm pretty sure those aren't actual employees of Neon Gas. Trolling ... ever heard of it?
CD / April 30, 2014 at 11:42 pm
I've seen these rumours before, and have been filling up at this station regularly for years with no issues.
Parker / May 1, 2014 at 10:27 am
Tear it down, put up a condo.
Ben Ferguson / May 1, 2014 at 10:07 pm
Hi there, it's the "dingus" named Ben Ferguson. No one has ever called me that, but I quite like it. I find it hard to believe its the real Neon Gas Station owner in this thread but regardless I would be happy to discuss this with anyone. I would also be happy to connect anyone with Downtown Acura who tested the fuel and confirmed it's filled with water and mud. My personal opinion on it is that rain water enters the premium tank which they haven't been diligent with fixing as they have enjoyed the extra revenue. If you drive a car that takes cheap gas you wouldn't have a problem - all problems have been with premium. They have been lucky enough that TSSA tests have not been on the parts of the tank that had the water. Also, the premium pumps have been closed all week? Coincidence? The group of us with problems is growing daily! This is 100% true and a huge problem!
San San Maw replying to a comment from Ben Ferguson / May 2, 2014 at 11:42 am
Hi There. I support 100% with Ben ferguson. I had all proof of this gas station is wrong doing.
I save my car's gas filter for lab test for future need. I have receipt of this gas station and receipt of car service. Remember after I purchased the gas CAA towed my car to garage. I have records of CAA.
What else you can say there is not proof or it is rumor.
Julie Whitfield / May 2, 2014 at 08:08 pm
I am one of ten people (that I know of) who this has happened to in the last 3 years. I have all their names and numbers and their stories. We are not making it up! It is very obvious when your car has just been filled up with tainted gas. Mine was on empty when I filled up and didn't even drive out of the lot. Others only drove a block or two. One man lost power and steering on the highway... really dangerous. We all bought premium gas. I buy premium because I have to drive and it is the lesser of the evils for the environment.
I like to support local and I like to support full serve as it is important for those with mobility issues.
I had noticed minor problems (spluttering and warning lights on the dash)in the past when I filled up at Neon, but assumed it was just my old car.
The repairs to our cars cost between $700 to $3000 which is why we want to put a stop to this... that and more importantly because it could be really dangerous.
The TSSA testing does a moisture or dip test. This apparently is not an adequate test to see if there is water in the tank.
Although the TSSA tagline is "Putting Public Safety First" they don't seem to be responding to concerns which have been raised since 1992. In fact they have said that the organization is not responsible for the quality of the gas!
Most of the complainants have either letters from their mechanics and/or samples of the gas/water/sludge that Neon filled their tanks with.
Sean O'Shea the investigative reporter who is covering this story on Global News this week, tried to find the Ministry responsible for contaminated gas and he said that they tossed this about like a hot potato.
I have reports and complaints dating back to 1992 when the present owner took over from Pioneer and there was water in the gas tanks then... as well as a mysterious disappearance of 17000 litres of "unleaded product"... and a letter of complaint from a neighbour who smelled gas in their basement.
We complainants are not trying to shut down a local business.
We are trying to solve a problem that you or a friend or family member might encounter down the road. This seems to be a problem that no government Ministry wants to take ownership of and solve.... but I am still looking... !
Germs replying to a comment from Ray / May 5, 2014 at 06:47 pm
I was stunned a few weeks ago to be charged $28 for a BBQ tank refill. I asked my neighbour what he pays and he says $15, possibly $17 now at Danforth and Warden. Never going to Neon again. I also stopped getting gas there after I read some warnings online.
AC replying to a comment from Julie Whitfield / May 6, 2014 at 07:05 pm
Hi Julie Whitfield,

I filled my SUV up there on April.24 and it broke down on the highway five minutes later and I had to get it towed to the mechanic. my mechanic said the same thing that I had water in my tank. How can so many people be saying the same thing and nobody doing anything about, it doesn't make any sense. I'm sure the gas station isn't doing it on purpose, but now I'm stuck with a big bill and the owner won't even call me back.
Julie Whitfield / May 6, 2014 at 08:28 pm
Hi AC, I assume that you are OK because you are writing me!! That must have been very scary breaking down on the highway.

I have dug up all the letters of complaints and water in the premium tank has been going on since 1992! The problem is that the organization that is meant to be testing the gas is irresponsible and not doing their job. I have called my insurance company and they will probably pay my expenses ($1500 and another$1300) but I need to prove that Neon gas is BAD!!! I have called all the government agencies and I am determined to prove this.

Did you buy "premium" gas? did you keep any of the gas that the mechanic took out of your car? or did the mechanic write down the problem... like "water in the tank" did you keep your receipt from Neon?

If you send me your name and your email address or phone number and the answers to the questions I will make sure that I stay in touch and let you know what can be done and I will do all that I can ( and the other 9 people on my list) get compensation.
This HAS TO STOP before someone gets hurt
Julie Whitfield / May 6, 2014 at 08:31 pm
oops, AC, my email address is
Phil / May 21, 2014 at 05:12 pm
Cmon, let the local hipsters drink that crank.
Bert / July 11, 2014 at 03:22 pm
I will never fill up again at this crooked place. They ripped me off big time on a propane visit. Sounds like the owner will soon be in prison with this kind of criminal behavior.
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