Thursday, December 18, 2008

Maximize Your Mileage

I drive a Hybrid.

My car manufacturer recently sent me an e-mail with more than just ads. It had a list of helpful tips that really do work and I could see making a notable difference.

Now I know that gas has greatly reduced in price, but if you don't do it for your wallet, do it for the Earth and your children that have to live in it yeah?

Click to read these tips you really should follow.
  • When you drive a little faster, you burn considerably more fuel. Slow down and increase your vehicle's fuel efficiency.
  • Once you're out on the highway at cruising speed, use your vehicle's cruise control. You'll burn less fuel if you do.
  • Slow down for hills. Maintaining your speed up a hill means opening your vehicle's throttle, which burns more gas. On down hills, use gravity to help increase speed and improve fuel economy.
  • Accelerate only when you have to, and only as much as you need to. Avoid jackrabbit starts, bring your vehicle to speed with a light right foot, and maintain smooth progress on the road. In other words, never FLOOR it.
  • For slowing down or stopping, get off the gas as soon as you can. Use your brakes when you need to, but allow the other forces working on your vehicle to help slow you down. This one is hard to get used to but I have learned to do it a lot. Don't be competitive with other people. If you see traffic slowing down. Let go of the gas right away and let friction slow you down with time. You won't get there any faster if you step on the gas.
  • Whenever you can, keep your windows closed to decrease drag. For climate control, use your vehicle's air conditioning. It's the lesser of two evils.
  • Roof racks and rooftop containers have extremely negative effects on a vehicle's fuel efficiency. Remove them when not in use.
  • Tire maintenance is essential for a safe drive. Perform regular air-pressure checks and adjustments to help minimize tire wear and increase your gas mileage. Don't forget the spare.
  • Keep your oil clean. Change your oil and oil filter at the proper mileage/month interval. Remember to use the proper grade motor oil and a reliable oil filter.


Dawnie said...

I do most of this stuff. I am guilty of flooring it when someone ticks me off...its a woman thing what can I say? My car is newer and not that great on gas its a G-6. Since gas has done down though,,I'm noticing like the rest of America..a huge savings.

Iris said...

I never knew abou the open windows. I always thought it was better to drive with them down. Weird :) Thanks!

Douglas said...

The cruise control suggestion contradicts the hill advice. I found that cruise control maintains a speed, not an optimum fuel efficiency. It will increase gas use on hills trying to maintain the set speed. I have also found that it is easy to get better gas mileage by not using the cruise control on long trips, as long as you can maintain a steady pressure on the gas pedal. Cruise control does not do this, it changes the acceleration on a constant basis. The newest ones are better than the ones in the past but they all react to speed changes slower than a driver can. The advantage of the cruise control is that you don't get the leg fatigue. It also prevents "accelerator creep", that tendency to go faster and faster until the flashing lights of the police car show up in your rearview.

HektikLyfe said...

>Dawnie: My wife and I rented a G-6 when we were in Miami and I can vouch for that terrible gas mileage. But wow that thing has POWER!

>Iris: Yeah I rarely open the windows because of it. You'll notice a decrease in speed when you open them in some cars. It works like air brakes.

>Douglas: I noticed that but I think they mean don't accelerate when you ALREADY going up. I always accelerate before and then let gravity naturally slow me down without stepping harder on the gas. My Mercedes used to have a pretty erratic cruise control but my new Camry manages gas consumption really well and it gives you steering control. It really depends on the car though I think.