App Review: Find a Fueling Station for Your Alternative-Energy Vehicle

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If you drive a vehicle that uses an alternative fuel source—electricity, natural gas or biodiesel—you know that “gassing up” isn’t as easy as pulling into a corner gas station. Finding alternative fuel stations can be a challenge, even with more becoming available.

Enter the “Alternative Fueling Station Locator” by National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Updated in March 2014, this free iPhone® app helps users locate fueling stations where they can “fill up” their electric, natural gas, biodiesel, E85, propane or hydrogen-powered vehicles. Using either your current location or an address you enter, you just tell the app what kind of fuel you need, and the app will locate up to 20 stations within a 30-mile radius. Results will be displayed on an interactive map.

For each location, the app will display address, phone number, hours of operation, whether the station is public or private, what types of payment it accepts, and any special services offered. Natural gas users can see the compression available at their stations, while electricity users can see the number and types of chargers available. The app will even tell you if your biodiesel-powered heavy truck will fit into the station!

Information comes from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center, which contains information about more than 15,000 alternative fueling stations across the U.S. Among iTunes users, the app has a four-star rating. It’s available for free download on iTunes.