Probably more than you would like.
Paying for a fuel drain is annoying, its no fun paying for someone to take away something you’ve already payed for but wish you had not.
At the end of a fuel drain you have nothing but an empty tank, I feel your pain.
I have been in and around fuel drains long enough to know whats what so heres my tuppence worth.
Fuel drains are sometimes advertised for as little as 99 pounds, its often the case that the terms & conditions make this considerably more, also a 99 pound fuel drain will often be offered for next day service at a time that suits the company, i,e when we are round your way next.
I do know a company who shall remain nameless who take great pride it sticking it right up people who drive new high value cars, to make matters worse they then inform the customer that they are the only fuel draining company that puts in a special additive or replaces some mythical part to justify the cost, and routinely charge 600 pounds and up for a simple job, if you find yourself on the phone to a company that sounds like this, do yourself a favour and get a few other quotes.
A Fuel drain from a reputable company will cost between £150 and £210, the price can vary on your location, the car type and the time of day, by reputable company, by that I mean someone who is doing it for a living full time, has a dedicated van, a licence to carry waste, a fuel forecourt safety pass, and his insurance company knows what he is doing. he will also be fully kitted out and have the correct tools. in the unlikely event something goes wrong you will most likely find he lives at the address printed on the receipt he gave you, he takes card payments and will work quickly and efficiently to get you back on the road,
A fuel drain from a fly by nighter can cost considerably less, 50 quid is not unheard of, at that price a van is unlikely, an estate car with a bunch of barrels in the back is the norm, the specialist kit would consist of a fuel pump salvaged from his uncles long abandoned Xr3i that still sits in the garden in his manor. and some old garden hose, his insurance company has him fully covered for social domestic and pleasure and in unawares that he is riding round the hood with enough mixed fuel in the boot to launch a small satellite. and he is most likely unavailable on tuesday which is when he has to go down the job center to half heartedly apply for yet more jobs he does not want, if something goes wrong on the job it is unlikely he will hang around to fix it, and if something goes wrong afterwards then you’re in the unenviable position of looking for a chap called “dave” with a pay as you go sim for contact details.
My gripe here is not the low prices charged by chancers, its the approach to the job that annoys me, a reputable firm has to pay VAT & all the other tax, we need specialist insurance which is far from cheap, we need equipment that costs in excess of 10k, and thats before we find a van to put it in, add to that the costs of answering a phone 24 hours a day and having 2 drivers to cover a 24 hour shift and the profit margin isn’t quite as good as you might think while you “watch us earn 170 quid for 10 minutes work” joking aside I know allot of fuel drainers and it doesn’t pay as much as you might think, for a start you have to be pretty savvy to do this job, and most fuel drainers I know are also very good mechanics, they also need to be familier with car electrical systems and be prepared to work all hours of the day and night in any weather, what they walk out with on an average week is a fair rate for what they do.