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Fuel Saving Tips

Coast in gear on some cars

Modern fuel injected cars have a fuel cut off function if the car is coasting in gear and the engine revolutions are kept around 2000rpm or higher (this may vary, of course). If you have a trip computer with instantanious consumption function, this can be easily verified by coasting in gear at highway speeds - if the instantanious consumption goes down to zero consumption (or infinite mileage), your car has this function. This means the car uses zero fuel during in gear coasting as opposed to out of gear coasting where fuel must be supplied to the engine to keep it idling.

posted by elabuschagne on October 28, 2008

this tip works for 69% of voting Fuelly members.

Don't cruise the parking lot

I saw a tip about parking instead of using the drive-through and this is along those lines (especially in large, congested lots). All this starting and stopping isn't going to help your economy and face it, you need the exercise. If possible, park your vehicle at the first open spot and walk in. Cruising parking lots also leaves you open for to speed accidents and frustration.

posted by veryhumid on October 16, 2008

this tip works for 100% of voting Fuelly members.

Hydrogen Systems

Think twice before adding an H2O or Hydrogen system to your vehicle. On 10/4/2008 I had a Single Cell HHO System installed for a total cost of $679.95 including the $250 installation charge. My first fillup today showed a MPG of 23.8 MPG, down from my average for this vehicle of 26.3 MPG. We will see what the future holds. To date it looks like I may have wasted $679.95.

posted by 1Jal1 on October 6, 2008

this tip works for 81% of voting Fuelly members.

Plan your fuel stops ahead...

When traveling use sites like to check the fuel prices along the day's route. Plan your fuel stops ahead of time before leaving. Don't cut it too close though. I plan my fuel stops where my anticipated fuel level is between 1/2 and 1/4 tank. This way I'm traveling on the cheapest fuel possible. You can save up to 25% by knowing which exits on the highway are the cheapest.

posted by Jay2TheRescue on September 30, 2008

this tip works for 100% of voting Fuelly members.

Maintain your momentum

When approaching a corner, let your momentum carry you through it - try to stay off the brakes. Braking is detrimental to getting the best mileage - and going around corners at speed is fun!

posted by tonygrieder on September 30, 2008

this tip works for 77% of voting Fuelly members.


Stick cars are gas savers, when on a hill and going down, let gravity push the car down while your car is in neutral. i do this when i back out of my driveway. or when i go down a hill on a road. Also, when leaving a stop, accelerate to the speed limit, maybe even 5mph more and then shift to neutral. Coast for sometime.

posted by DaytonaGuy on September 28, 2008

this tip works for 25% of voting Fuelly members.

Slow down earlier and coast

If you can judge the timing of a light with sufficient advanced noticed, *sometimes* it helps to brake harder earlier. I'll give an example. I have a light on my commute at the bottom of a long hill. If I keep going 55-60mph, the odds are high that I'll have to come to a complete stop at the bottom. Usually within 10-15 seconds it turns green and I'm accelerating from zero. If I see that there's a sufficient line of cars waiting for it to turn, it helps if I apply the brakes earlier. My car will slow down into the 30mph range and by the time I get near the line, the cars are moving through the light. My car just coasts through and I can accelerate from there rather than from a dead stop, preserving significant momentum. Obviously this has limited usage in stop and go traffic, but is useful for those area where stop lights are put along lesser traveled roads.

posted by sbilik on September 26, 2008

this tip works for 100% of voting Fuelly members.

Buy a Scan Gauge

A scan gauge plugs into your computer port and can tell your MPG as you drive plus many other things to improve your driving etc.. Also go synthetic for your oil,brakes,pwr steering,rear end,AC. Also Nitro-Fill your tires.

posted by stu on September 23, 2008

this tip works for 75% of voting Fuelly members.

To Save on Gas

Nitro-fill your tires.... use synthetic like Royal Purple products or Amsoil. Use a synthetic additive for the a/c. They all contribute.

posted by stu on September 23, 2008

this tip works for 20% of voting Fuelly members.

Accelerate to save gas

I saw a tip a few moments ago about accelerating and I agree with it. Its true. One full tank tried slow acceleration, the car feels sluggish and burnt more fuel. My previous car, 94 E320 was fine with that kind of acceleration, not the MDX. Next fill up I tried being little bit more aggressive on acceleration, accelerate enough to have a smooth ride instead of a sluggish feel and mileage has improved and I dont feel like I am in a Jumbo Jet dragged by a couple of ox.

posted by mdxrox on September 22, 2008

this tip works for 61% of voting Fuelly members.

Gas/ethanol blends lower mileage

Most of our gas stations are going to gasoline with 10% ethanol blends. While gasohol is supposed to reduce emissions, it also reduces your mpg. Ethanol has about 40% less energy per gallon than gasoline. So gas with 10% ethanol will give 4% less mileage than "pure" gasoline. Unless the gasohol costs 4% less ($3.36/gal gasohol vs. $3.50 gasoline) you'll save money over the gasohol blend. Pumps with gasohol are required to be labeled "Contains up to 10% ethanol". My vehicle is flex fuel than can also use E85. Using E85 (85% ethanol/15% gas) reduces my mileage by about 30%. So unless E85 is 30% cheaper than gasoline, it's not worth it to me.

posted by jgibbsjr on September 21, 2008

this tip works for 95% of voting Fuelly members.

What if can't remove the entire roof rack?

If you can't remove the entire roof rack, or if it is unfeasable (like leaving exposed holes), then try removing just the crossbars. I did that on my Dodge minivan and the highway mpg is about 1 mpg better with less wind noise.

posted by jgibbsjr on September 21, 2008

this tip works for 85% of voting Fuelly members.

Parking tip

If you are safely able to do so, pull through back to back parking spots so that you are facing nose out. When you leave, you can pull out forward(slowly and carefully) without having to reverse, stop, and then accelerate forward again.

posted by jgibbsjr on September 21, 2008

this tip works for 90% of voting Fuelly members.

Cool car interior quicker

If you use the A/C a lot, like I do, here are a few tips. Before you start the car, roll the windows down. In the summer, the car cools down much quicker if you let the hot air in the car naturally blow out the windows. I leave the windows down for about thirty seconds while backing out. Your A/C compressor won't work as hard to cool the interior, saving you gas. I also turn off the A/C fan when parking. That way the engine doesn't have to work harder to start compared to starting with the A/C on.

posted by jgibbsjr on September 21, 2008

this tip works for 87% of voting Fuelly members.


This works well on manual transmissions. When you know you'll be slowing, i.e. you can see the light well ahead turn yellow, just take your foot off the gas, shift into neutral and gently coast on until you need to stop. There's no sense speeding to a stop light and wasting perfectly good momentum in the process. Odds are the light may even turn green again by the time you get to it. Similarly, when cresting a hill, so long as the road ahead is safely clear, let gravity do the work instead of your engine. When slowing while going up a hill, again, let gravity do the work.

posted by Jabber on September 19, 2008

this tip works for 55% of voting Fuelly members.


Wind resistance is one of the huge factors that causes worse gas mileage. While driving on the highway, driving behind another car can greatly reduce the amount of wind resistance on your vehicle, thus increasing your gas mileage.

posted by onlycodered on September 14, 2008

this tip works for 64% of voting Fuelly members.

Get a jump on the Holiday

Generally speaking, holidays (especially 3 or 4-day weekends) mean a higher than usual demand at the pump. Higher demand = higher prices. So don't wait until the holiday and fill up a day or two before.

posted by joeperez4 on September 14, 2008

this tip works for 86% of voting Fuelly members.

Keep RPM's low

I agree with Tikitantrum on August 8. Keep the RPM's low to get better mileage. I was getting about 24MPG until I started shifting especially early. Now, keeping the RPM's below 2000 is getting me over 26MPG! The few times I took off harder, letting R's go double that, my mileage was back below 26, further confirming to me that keeping the engine revs low really, really helps.

posted by HappyDad on September 12, 2008

this tip works for 76% of voting Fuelly members.


I found a great way to increase gas mileage after reading about hypermiling. Fact granted, those around me don't like it that I am at (or under) the speed limit, but they don 't pay my driving expenses. Hypermiling has improved my gas mileage by 30% -- instead of 2 days on a tank of gas, I am now averaging 3 days per tank. To learn about hypermiling, type the key word (hypermiling) into any Web browser I am assuming that those who are members of this Web site care about fuel efficiency. Many drivers do not realize that fast accelerations, fast breaking, tail gating and weaving in and out of traffic also lowers gas mileage. Heavy breakers, and those who are impatient will realize their mistakes -- at the gas pump. In my own driving experience, air conditioning reduces gas mileage by about 25%, which is staggering. Needless to say, I pray for cooler days, and only turn on the air as a last resort...but humid days in 90+ degree weather can make anyone wilt, so it is sometimes unavoidable. I wish you great gas mileage and safe driving to your destination!

posted by photostitch on September 6, 2008

this tip works for 75% of voting Fuelly members.

Increase MPG

Change to synthetic oil in all applications on your vehicle. Car will run cooler, increase MPG and fewer oil changes. You can extend your oil changes between 7,500 miles up to 25,000 miles depending upon the type of synthetic oil you use. I use Amsoil Synthetics. Also, put a fuel cleaner in your gas every so often to help keep the fuel system clean and remove any condensation build up in the tank or gas line. Keep tires inflated to proper psi and keep your car CLEAN. Believe it or not, a clean car will get better MPG.

posted by BizNetFuel on September 3, 2008

this tip works for 68% of voting Fuelly members.

Turn Less

Turning less makes your driving more smooth, therefore saves a little gas. Cut corners when you are the only one on the road. Such that in an S-turn, you would just drive in the straightest line possible within the two lanes of the same direction, or single lane if the lane is wide enough.

posted by codemunky on September 3, 2008

this tip works for 53% of voting Fuelly members.

speed does matter

Contrary to what some have said on this FAQ, speed does matter (not just RPMs). Why? Wind resistance. Wind resistance increases as a cube of your speed. According to government statistics, there is a fuel economy difference of 17%-25% between driving at 55mph and at 70mph. Sources:

posted by xeyedjack on September 1, 2008

this tip works for 100% of voting Fuelly members.

The Brake Effect

Vehicles with rear drum brakes have automatic adjusters that, overtime, can get dirty and stop working properly. The front brakes then have to work harder which can cause them to drag. Dragging brakes will cause fuel mileage to decrease.

posted by robarnt on August 30, 2008

this tip works for 53% of voting Fuelly members.

Remove Roof Racks

If you can remove your roof rack, do so if you're not going to be using it, even for a week. The extra wind resistance reduces your MPG.

posted by bruzie on August 27, 2008

this tip works for 88% of voting Fuelly members.

What to watch out for

If a tanker truck is filling the fuel stations underground tanks, go to the next fuel station. When the underground tanks are being filled, the contents are being stirred, increasing the risk of getting sediments and water into your tank instead of gas.

posted by ShoWtiMe on August 26, 2008

this tip works for 81% of voting Fuelly members.

New Tires? Look for LRR rated.

If you are replacing your tires anytime soon you should look for tires that are designated as Low Rolling Resistance (LRR). LRR can help improve your fuel economy by 2-4%. Be advised though, LRR tires may be hard to find. Look for Michelin MXV4+ or Goodyear Viva2.

posted by modysy on August 25, 2008

this tip works for 64% of voting Fuelly members.

Walk a little

I often see people driving round shopping precinct car parks looking for an empty spot as close as possible to the shop. If it's not raining and you don't have a disability, park a little further away.. Often you will find that the short walk after parking the car a little further away will be less than the time spent looking for the closest spot, you will burn less fuel, and burn a few more calories, which can't be a bad thing, and the car park is often less crowded, meaning you're less likely to ding your car.. This way you're a winner, which ever way you look at it.

posted by SwissJon on August 25, 2008

this tip works for 98% of voting Fuelly members.

Use Gas Tracking Sites to Spot Gas Deals

Sites like depend on their users to submit current gas prices to the main site for everyone to see. It's a good idea to compare prices before ever having to leave your house.

posted by Nettle on August 24, 2008

this tip works for 78% of voting Fuelly members.

Inflate More Than You Think

You can safely inflate your tires, in most cases, to a higher pressure. For example, my minivan manual says to inflate to 35psi, but the max pressure on the tire sidewall is 44 psi. I find I can run at 40psi without making the ride too harsh, and I've picked up a couple of MPG. Your mileage (and comfort level) may vary. Never exceed the cold inflation pressure embossed on your tire sidewall.

posted by b3n on August 23, 2008

this tip works for 61% of voting Fuelly members.

Fuel Map - Buy gas cheap

Plan your trip or just your regular drive home by finding the cheapest fuel. Try: (US + Canada) Gas Buddy can be added to Google maps or you can find a map of your area right on the site. The nation wide heat map is also cool. If your putting lots of effort into saving 1-2 mpg or a few $ per tank you may as well be buying the cheapest fuel. On my route in Boston prices vary from 3.69 to 3.53, that difference alone is worth $3.20 a tank. Thats practically a free gallon of fuel and nearly the same as squeezing an extra 1 mpg out of my vehicle.

posted by randomic on August 22, 2008

this tip works for 100% of voting Fuelly members.