U-Fuel Promises Cheaper Fuel Pump Options
It's looking like unleaded avgas is coming within five years, if the FAA has any say. There's not much we can do about it, but maybe there's a way FBOs can equip for the new fuel for less than the ballpark $150,000 price point Flying got from the FBO owner quoted in Robert Goyer's blog titled "Unleaded Avgas: Do We Really Have To?"
The Wisconsin-based U-Fuel organization is the oldest and largest supplier of turnkey, self-service aviation fuel systems in the world, according to Kent Misegades, U-Fuel representative. “We have thousands of fuel systems installed all over the world,” Misegades says. They built their first one (the first one) back in the late 1980s. There’s no denying that these guys have been around for a while, and maybe there’s a reason: Value. Misegades says that a “typical” two-product Avgas + Jet-A system goes for around $100,000, and that a “bare-bones” system lands at roughly $25,000.
So why the dramatic decrease from $150,000? Misegades says that these are usually estimates of pricier custom-designed systems. “U-Fuel systems require no additional engineering, simple site preparation and arrive on site [almost] ready to operate.” With low cost and ease of installation comes an expected drawback, though: U-Fuel only offers aboveground tank systems. Then again, their largest tanks can hold up to 30,000 gallons of fuel.