Savomatic Gas Station Photos
Apparently SAVOMATIC was a franchise operation (maybe by TIME OIL).
As you can see, small-timers such as country stores would get a
basic set of pumps, light, sign and turn into a self-serve gas station.
Since people had to pay inside for gas, it guaranteed foot traffic
to the store!
This particular site is unusual in that the pumps remain. Located at
the intersection of Rtes. 33 and 166 in Maricopa, CA., the
Gateway Market & Liquor Store is also closed down now.
Someone painted "Gateway Fuels" across the pumps when Savomatic bit the dust.
Reason most likely was environmental laws (double tanks, better fuel nozzles).
Neither franchisee nor franchisor could profitably do that work and all
the little stations vanished in the early 90's. Sign at present shows only
two rock holes in it, not bad for an abandoned site.
From J. Eric Freedner, January 2004.
Taken April 2004, just before sundown. SAVOMATIC pumps and sign at a
small market located at 77th Street East and Pearblossom Highway
(Route 138) in Littlerock, CA. From J. Eric Freedner.
Same location as above. Close-up of the old pump sticker - bleached out to
almost yellow by the sun but originally red. You can still see the little $'s on there too!
Note on the premium pump, just visible, the octane rating of the premium was 91.5 - a rating
no longer used in California. From J. Eric Freedner.
Savomatic sign only, above a liquor store at Millard and Foothill Boulevard
(Historic Route 66) in Rialto, CA. Photo taken Sept. 19, 2004. I guess the
little pump bay would have been in the parking lot beside or behind the store,
but there's no trace left of it now. Here again, the red parts of the
plastic sign are badly faded from years of sunlight (probably put up around 1984)
and it really does look a pale pink now. Its companion sign for Foothill Liquor seems newer.
Why is the Savomatic still up there? One guess is: its weight is needed to balance the sign!
From J. Eric Freedner.