Many motorists have carried on regardless after seeing their fuel warning light ping up on a trip.
Indeed some view the little red reminder as challenge rather than a warning, engaging in a little “fuel light bingo” to try and get home and have their other half refuel.
But sometimes luck and petrol run out which can cause massive road disruption as the motor coughs and splutters to a halt on the road.
So when the light comes on, exactly how much fuel have you got left and is it enough to get you to the next petrol station?
There are a number of variables which have to be accounted for including the type of car, the size of the fuel tank, the road you’re driving on and your speed.
Many believe that on average a car can go for around another 40 to 50 miles after the warning light flickers into life.
But the range on the gauge is normally based on the average miles already driven – so what it shows may not be accurate for your current driving conditions.
According to insurance company LV, who conducted a survey of the ten most popular cars in 2015, a Vauxhall Astra would only be able to go another 26 miles before conking out and Corsa would expire in just 29 miles.
A Ford Fiesta, would get another 37 miles and a Ford Focus 40 miles.
A VW Golf would roll on for a further 42 miles with a VW Polo barrelling along for another 39 miles.
Audi A3s keep going for 42 extra miles, Nissan Qashqai’s clock in at 43 miles and a MINI Cooper 45 miles.
The best performer out of the 10 was the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which kept on rolling for an extra 46 miles.
But those who opt to cut it fine could end up paying a high price for running dry.
There are fines from police if your motor ends up causing an obstruction and if you are not covered then there is the cost of having your vehicle recovered.
You can also damage the car as the level gets lower the it will start picking up debris from the bottom of the tank which can damage the fuel filter and pump.
The catalytic converter can also be damaged.
And running completely out of petrol can cause the fuel pump in your car to run dry – resulting in a visit to the garage and a bill of hundreds of pounds.
But diesels are fitted with an engine management system, which shuts down the car before you run out of fuel, stopping damage.