After purchasing a new vehicle, I'm torn about whether I'm being a shrewd businessman or a complete jerk.

I recently went car shopping, which can be a lot of fun and a panic attack-inducing nightmare all at once. No one likes having to purchase something so expensive, especially when you're never quite sure if you getting a good deal or being completely ripped off.

Luckily, we had a great experience with the staff at the dealership we settled on and they were very honest and transparent about this pretty huge purchase. (Full disclosure, it was DCH Wappingers Falls Toyota where I had also purchased another vehicle from 11 years ago.)

We settled on a vehicle and an agreeable price and they also quoted me exactly what I was expecting for my trade-in. But now, as I await the pick-up date I've started to wonder if I am kind of a jerk.


Knowing that I'm going to be trading in my old car, I've been putting off filing it with gas. Yesterday, the low fuel light turned on and I realized I only had about 15 miles left in the tank. Because I will probably trade the car in over the next few days, instead of filling it up I only put in another gallon. If everything works out on time, I'll probably roll the car back in on just fumes.

For some reason, the thought of giving away $40 in gas has me obsessed with keeping the tank near empty, but it really doesn't make much sense. With the amount of money I'm paying for the car, $40 is really kind of insignificant. Plus, my new car will most likely come with a full tank of gas, so am I just being a jerk about this?

I've talked to several people who recently traded in cars and they all have differing opinions on how much gas to leave in the tank. One coworker said that she not only left the tank dry but also kept the extra key, the manual, floor mats and anything else not bolted to the car. Another friend of mine, however, said that leaving anything less than a half tank is pretty insulting. Forcing the dealership to fill up just to drive the car around the lot is pretty rude.

Because I'd rather throw away a few bucks instead of people thinking I'm being a jerk, I'm most likely going to wind up stopping at the gas station before trading in the car. But is that really the right thing to do or am I just a sucker? Let me know what you think by dropping a message on our app or by commenting on our Facebook page.

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