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Fuel Saving Tips

Lighter engine oil for better mileage? or more power?

Not from my experience (as a master tech for over 40 years), and from extensive testing on dynamometer and road testing specific vehicles while testing results of 10w40 compared to 5w20 engine oils. No difference in HP or fuel economy whatsoever.

posted by billtech66 on October 5, 2016

this tip works for 63% of voting Fuelly members.

Don't use your Automatic Climate Control!

On many higher end vehicles the climate control system will have an "auto" setting much like a home would however the vehicle will almost always automatically engage the A/C system even if cooling is not required, the system also typically runs in defrost/floor vent position which runs the vehicles A/C even though the A/C button is turned off. To prevent unnecessary use of A/C when you don't required cooling or defogging of windows manually switch the climate control to face or face/foot vent position and make sure the A/C button is off. This will ensure the compressor doesn't kick in unless you activate it manually.

posted by PTOWNcommuter on October 1, 2016

this tip works for 70% of voting Fuelly members.

Lead-foots save by car pooling

If you and your mates are lead-foots, and still want to be lead-foots whilst saving lots of fuel. Car pool. You can all enjoy the lead-foot experience in the same car at a fraction of the cost!

posted by Charles1989 on September 29, 2016

this tip works for 73% of voting Fuelly members.

Drive a diesel

If you drive a petrol car sell it and buy the equivalent diesel. They do on average around 50% more mpg than the petrol equivalent in power and performance.

posted by Charles1989 on September 29, 2016

this tip works for 24% of voting Fuelly members.

Run the Air-con instead of applying brakes

Air conditioning puts a big load on the engine and can be several kilowatts. So when you want to slow down in a vehicle with non-regenerative braking, keep a cool or warm cabin WITHOUT hurting mpg, switch leave the engine in gear and turn the air-con on full hot or cold. No fuel is supplied to the engine when the pedal isn't depressed and the air-con provides the braking that would otherwise be lost as heat. It's great for going down an incline to maintain a constant speed too!

posted by Charles1989 on September 29, 2016

this tip works for 35% of voting Fuelly members.

Ensure your tyres are at the correct pressure

A tyre should wear evenly across the entire tread from shoulder to shoulder. Over pressure is indicated by the centre of the tyre wearing faster than the shoulders & under pressure is indicated by the reverse. Over-pressure reduces your cornering grip, increases stopping distances and makes the car more susceptible to sliding on surface contaminates (gravel, oil, etc). Under pressure will cause the tyre overheat, aquaplane more readily & tramline more readily. Either state will cause your tyres to wear out more quickly.

posted by techathy on September 20, 2016

this tip works for 97% of voting Fuelly members.

Drive in higher gears

On my old car I would always shift the automatic transmission into 3rd around town and when going up steep highways so the engine wouldn't rev as much when the transmission hunted for the right gear. On that particular car it didn't seem to hurt the mileage at all. However, I now have a newer car with an instantaneous mpg readout that shows that shifting from drive ("D") to 3rd when going up long inclines immediately caused a 25-30% drop in mpg. Fortunately, my new car has more torque, so it doesn't rev and hunt when going uphill, so I can leave it in D always and get better gas mileage.

posted by Barquito on September 11, 2016

this tip works for 52% of voting Fuelly members.

Never Coast or Idle in Neutral in a Hybrid!

While some people may suggest coasting or idling in neutral to save some gas (although it is illegal in most states), you never ever want to do this while driving a hybrid. Why? While in neutral, the car's generator is not engaged, meaning it cannot charge the high-voltage battery. This also means no regenerative braking while in neutral!

posted by Araiza on August 30, 2016

this tip works for 77% of voting Fuelly members.

Know Your Vehicle’s Optional Equipment, Configure Appropriately

Learn and understand your vehicle’s optional equipment as it pertains to fuel economy, and configure it appropriately. For example, my Audi Q5 has a factory electric auxiliary heater. It also has a gauge to show you the real-time fuel economy impact of defeatable devices, such as A/C, seat heaters, window defrosters, and the aux. heater. The aux heater has only 2 settings: OFF or AUTO. In auto mode, it comes on when I could do without it, and stays on well after the engine has heated up. It costs as much fuel as running your A/C! I leave if OFF to save fuel, turning it to AUTO only as needed. But don’t sacrifice safety for better MPG.

posted by SteveMak on August 25, 2016

this tip works for 68% of voting Fuelly members.

Safely Increase Tire Pressure

Car manufacturers have a recommended tire pressure based on a number of factors, making number of assumptions and compromises. For example, they might favor a more comfortable ride. You might have different priorities, such as sacrificing a slightly smoother, quieter ride in favor of higher fuel economy (higher tire pressure). Do your due diligence to determine how much higher to go. Never exceed the tire manufacturer's recommended rating.

posted by SteveMak on August 22, 2016

this tip works for 85% of voting Fuelly members.

CA Fuel vs 49 State Fuel

California fuel is specially blended to reduce emissions and is only produced by California refineries, it also has significantly less power and yields reduced miles per gallon. If going on a road trip to CA, top off your tank before entering California territories and after leaving. If you live in California, fill up when you are out of state.

posted by Avidice on August 15, 2016

this tip works for 47% of voting Fuelly members.

Use a lighter weight oik

Switching from a heavier oil (like 10w-30) to a lighter oil (such as 5w-30) can have a huge impact on how your engine runs. It costs a lot of parasitic drag to pump that heavier oil through the engine. I've noticed a 4 mpg improvement in two of my cars going to a synthetic 5w-30 motor oil.

posted by flyzizzerz on August 15, 2016

this tip works for 22% of voting Fuelly members.

Look at your tires

Watch for over inflated tires because over inflation although it improves gas mileage, can cause wear in the middle of the tire, reducing tire life, and reducing traction, and will add longer distance travel in panic stops or not being able to move in snow. If you see flat spots you probably need to get the tire balanced. An out of balanced tire will bounce at highway speeds. This causes flat spots on your tire and the bouncing reduces your gas mileage.

posted by TNflash on August 14, 2016

this tip works for 92% of voting Fuelly members.

Tire pressure and gas mileage

It is important to watch how your tires are wearing. If the edge is wearing faster than the middle of the tire put in a few more pounds of air. Your tires will last longer and you will get better gas mileage and improve your cars handling. Heavier loaded vehicles need more air than lighter vehicles. More air in the tires equal harder tires which have 1, less rolling resistance 2, give better gas mileage and 3, better tire life do to cooler temperatures inside the tire.

posted by TNflash on August 14, 2016

this tip works for 96% of voting Fuelly members.

Beware fuel deals

I gassed up twice at different gas stations at the Georgia, Florida line on I-75 because of advertised cheap fuel prices. Each time after I checked my mileage I found a 30 % reduction in my mpg. Some gas bargains! I now fill up 75 miles before or after the state line on my trips to Florida and avoid those bargain stations entirely.

posted by TNflash on August 14, 2016

this tip works for 54% of voting Fuelly members.

Select The Right Drive Mode

Many of today's modern vehicles have multiple driving "modes", which are driver-selectable. Usually, there is an "Economy" or "Comfort" mode, which "tunes" the vehicle to better fuel economy -- such as shifts at lower RPMs and gradual throttle response -- while foregoing brisk acceleration and a "sporty," high-revving drive. Use it! These systems are typically smart enough to automatically supply brisk acceleration on-demand (via a firm accelerator push), if required in an emergency.

posted by SteveMak on August 13, 2016

this tip works for 95% of voting Fuelly members.

Cruse Control

Use cruse control where safe, the car will drive itself more economically than you can.

posted by David404 on August 12, 2016

this tip works for 52% of voting Fuelly members.

Coast on hills!

If you're travelling down a steep enough hill that you won't lose any speed by letting of the gas, or will only lose a little speed - coast! (Though so NOT shift out of gear!) Modern cars cut fuel to the engine in coasting situations as it is not needed, so rolling 200 or 300 metres down a hill here and there can add up! No harm in letting gravity do the work! ;)

posted by darkstrike on August 7, 2016

this tip works for 93% of voting Fuelly members.

accurate fuel pumping

Pay attention to how quickly your tank fills up and stop the pump at the same time to get consistent fill ups. This will make your calculations more accurate over time.

posted by on2wheels on August 5, 2016

this tip works for 61% of voting Fuelly members.

Clean car

Keep your car clean and tidy will slightly increase your fuel economy. Specially if your AC condenser is clean.

posted by Alikhaneng on August 4, 2016

this tip works for 36% of voting Fuelly members.

Roll with the hills

In hilly terrain, allow at least a few seconds between your car and the one ahead to enable "hitting the hill" at a slightly higher speed and *backing off* the gas gradually as you approach the crest under the speed limit. Gain speed to hit the next hill at speed. Yields dramatic fuel savings, even in moderate traffic.

posted by saabinista on August 2, 2016

this tip works for 96% of voting Fuelly members.

Go on a diet.

The less you weigh the easier your car goes up hills!

posted by djc5581 on August 2, 2016

this tip works for 89% of voting Fuelly members.

Don't Run Your Car to "E"!

Do not run your car until the low fuel light comes on! You may want to get the most out of your tank but this habit could clog your fuel filter by allowing debris to settle. You should never run your car much lower than 1/4 tank of gas. Here's a Consumer Reports article about this:

posted by Araiza on August 1, 2016

this tip works for 45% of voting Fuelly members.

Use EV Mode More Often! (Hybrids)

If getting up to speed requires you to drive on the gasoline engine, you'll notice that it stays on for a good while after reaching speed and leveling out before switching off. Instead of waiting, once you hit speed, let off the accelerator then re-engage to essentially force the car to switch to EV mode!

posted by Araiza on August 1, 2016

this tip works for 81% of voting Fuelly members.

Regenerative Braking AND Coasting!

All hybrid and electric vehicles have this feature but you may not realize that you don't only recover energy when braking but also when coasting! When coming off the freeway, let off the gas as soon as you enter the exit lane & coast to lower speeds instead of braking- this charges my high-voltage battery from 20% to 90%, a higher gain than braking. Now you're ready to run off the EV motor for a good while!

posted by Araiza on August 1, 2016

this tip works for 90% of voting Fuelly members.

Avoid left turns when possible

UPS found that by avoiding left turns on all the routes its trucks take, it was able to save 98 million minutes of idle time per year. Of course, you're not driving thousands of trucks all over, but the principle is the same; sitting in the left turn lane just waiting for an opening takes more time (and thus, more gas) than turning right.

posted by cuts_off_prius on July 29, 2016

this tip works for 59% of voting Fuelly members.

Buy a manual transmission vehicle

Ignore the "lower" gas mileage ratings they are giving to manual transmissions these day, they are still more fuel efficient if you drive them for efficiency. I consistently get better mpg than the highway rating with mixed highway/suburb driving. And the added bonuses that it's WAY more fun to drive than any automatic, costs less, and I have control over my car. Coasting in neutral eliminates all engine drag in a manual, I gain speed coasting where automatics slow down.

posted by Diznavis on July 27, 2016

this tip works for 68% of voting Fuelly members.

Read the lights

“Read” the traffic at lights, look for (1) are there cars queued up at a red on my street and (2) are there cars queued up on the cross street at a red. Should I stay on the gas and have a good chance of making it green? Or should I get off the gas if the light will turn red before I get there. There are about 4 scenarios that you have to think about (red/stale, red/fresh, green/stale, green/fresh). The goal is to use the brakes as little as possible.

posted by Compostman on July 26, 2016

this tip works for 99% of voting Fuelly members.

Always get what's yours!

When fueling up at the pump and you have finished adding fuel lift the pump handle up so you get the remaining fuel out the tip even though it's a small ammmount it all adds up.

posted by Drive2Fast on July 22, 2016

this tip works for 81% of voting Fuelly members.

Best way to save fuel, ever!

I ride a bicycle to and from work everyday. This allows me to fill my 94 chevy truck up less than once a month which saves money and wear on my vehicle. If i am only going to get dinner or to the store for something small, i also take my bike. I drive the truck if i have to get lumber or something larger and than i drive smoth and steadily at about 60mph. This allows me to put less than 2k miles a year on my vehicle and also be much healthier.

posted by busemans on July 18, 2016

this tip works for 54% of voting Fuelly members.