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*** Updated 15 Oct 2014 ***

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The vents (NACA ducts), located near each wing tip, provide a small positive head of pressure on the fuel in all three tanks. This prevents a vacuum forming as fuel is used, assists the fuel pumps and reduces evaporation. NB if you overfill the fuel tanks, then this is where the ensuing fuel spillage will come from!

This photo of a 737-500 shortly after take-off shows a residue of fuel spilling from the surge tank vent. Perhaps they overfilled the number 1 wing tank?

This vent is forward of the starboard wing leading edge and is the vent for the auxiliary fuel tank, if fitted.

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