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Honda Civic Real World MPG



  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    Stop the $%^&#$ $%$#^&% press! A lot of you must not know how to get mpg out of a civic that is not a hybrid!
    I drive a 2005 manual all gas civic and get 43+ mpg on the highway and 35+ mpg in the city and I do check it correctly.
    I consider my self the king at milking mpg from a civic. I am moving toward 44 mpg on the highway and I do not drive a HX or a VX. My car was initially marked 38 on the highway.
    Ask me how to do it and I will advise. Sometimes adjustments you make may not become cost effective for many many miles but at the same time you want to deny those %$#$^%& anymore oil money.
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    Well Gosh! I'm all a tither with anticipation! :shades:

    Please do inform us King Rick119.

  • will26will26 Posts: 62
    I go 65 because that is the speed limit around here. If I drove the speeds you want I would get pulled over. I better go. I just missed out on my pathetic tv viewing by being on Carspace. What will I do???
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,380
    I also have concluded (67,000 miles on the Civic and 108,000 miles on the Jetta TDI) that the vehicle (Honda Civic) is indeed optimized for certain conditions. So for example, we do absolutely NOTHING in the way of fuel miser procedures and get what 95-98% of Honda Civic owners do NOT get: 38-42 mpg. :lemon: :shades: This is done in arguably one of the top 5 WORST commutes/roads in the country. To give a USA perspective worse examples would be:

    1.commuting to D/T Manhattan

    2. commuting to D/T San Francisco over the Bay Bridge (sister bridge is the Golden Gate Bridge)

    3. commuting to D/T Boston

    4. commuting to D/T Chicago

    (don't want to leave out any other truly bad commutes- but thems the breaks) ;)

    (I have done all of the above and more but obviously at different time frames)

    It would be interesting to see what changes to the mpg would be if we started hypermiling (NOT doing it, but an interesting projection nonetheless)

    Our 54 miles R/T commute SEEMS to fall into the optimization.

    1. One hour minimum operation (anything under this is less than optimal) , 27 miles each way @ 45 min to 1.5 hours. What happens is all systems come up to specified operating ranges temperatures and min times.

    2. best miles are highway miles, so 80/20 to 90/10%

    3. I know for example we lose a min of 1 mpg having an auto vs 5 speed manual (EPA rated difference between auto/manual) To be real clear I SWAG 39-43 mpg if we used a manual. In (apples to oranges) comparison we get 48-52 same commute using a 5 speed VW TDI Jetta. My take is while the Jetta is NOT optimized for this same commute, it does take it in stride and yields the stated numbers.
  • mikpaqmikpaq Posts: 2
    I have been driving my civic for 1 year and religiously track my mileage. I recently purchased a scanguageII to see my fuel consumption in real time. Pretty cool device if you've got "OGMD" (Obsessive Gas Mileage Disorder). I recently took a long trip that I decided to hypermile on. I didn't do any of the dangerous stuff, just driving very conservative (55mph), and coasting occassionally down long steep grades. My scanguage said I got 50 MPG, over a 596 mile drive. It also said I had 1.2 gallons left in my tank. When I filled it I put 11.675 gallaons in. The calculation would be 51.04 MPG. I too believe there is variation from pump to pump and even the outside temperature can influence. I've been using the scanguageII for about 2 months and it is very reliable once you calibrate it.

    After filling up I needed some speed so set the cruise control for 70 for the 220 miles of my remaining drive. I got 42 MPG during this time according to the scanguageII. Pretty big difference.

    You can find more info out about scanguageII here.

  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,380
    It probably goes without saying a scan gauge and/or on board computers can save large %'s for any and all gassers.

    Indeed a scan gauge and/or on board computers can take some of the mystery out of what are the most fuel efficient parts of the curve, given any and all conditions. YOU of course can/do/need make the decision for literally every second to every hour of operation. Of course it helps to have a good dose of (OCB's) obsessive complusive behaviors in ones back ground. ;)

    There has never been any doubt in my mind the Civic is "CAPABLE" of getting much better fuel mileage.
  • gqllcgqllc Posts: 8
    I am guilty as charged and I am OCD about the mileage! Just ordered a scan guage....where is the plug on a 08 civic LX???
  • kltronkltron Posts: 21
    The connector is behind the dashboard near your right knee. There's a label on the dashboard--I think it says "IDC" or something (it's really the OBDC connector, but Honda just calls it something else). Just look under the dash, and it's tucked there, kinda to the left of the center stack.

    I run the wire to the ScanGaugeII and put it in the center of the dash in the pocket next to the 12V/AUX jacks (I have an EX, your LX may vary). Fits nice, just sits there with no tape or anything, wire's completely hidden. I just glance down at it every now and then. It's small, so I'm sure others have found more creative places to put it.

  • Hi I have a 99 civic lx with a manual transmission. My parents have owned it since new and now that i bought it off of them as my college beater car i figured that i would see what kind of mpg it was getting. I didn't think that it would be as high as it used to be since it now has 190k miles, but after taking a 360 mile trip i only used 8.254 gallons so..... i got an amazing 43.6 mpg! I was pretty surprised that it was still getting such good fuel economy for being so old. The trip was mostly interstate driving between 70 and 80 mph and no a/c because that no longer works, lol.
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    You guys want mpg out of your civic? First you need to know how to properly check it, none of this "I get so many miles out of a tank" My manual sticker said 38 highway. I get 43 plus and If I make a couple more adjustments I could get 45 mpg.
    E-mail me at and I can advise.
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    I am calling you down and raising the BS flag on your claim of 43.6 mpg. Is that car an automatic? I am declaring that you did not check your mpg correctly especially at 70-80 mph.
    I have 400,000 miles on three civics and I know an mpg lie when I hear one. I have a 2005 manual civic that I modified to get mpg and I get 43 plus mpg at 55-70 mph.
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    Amazing when a someone joins a forum, declares themselves "King of Mileage", and instantly, in their first 3 posts, accuse others of not knowing what they are doing and/ or "LYING".

    For me, it kills any respectability they may actually deserve.

  • gqllcgqllc Posts: 8
    I found the connector BUT does the LX civic relay gas mileage information to the scan guage??
  • kltronkltron Posts: 21
    The ScanGaugeII computes the MPG somehow using the information from the diagnostic computer. I don't know what exactly it uses, but I suspect it's speed and fuel flow for "instant" MPG, and it could use that or something else for the overall trip/tank MPG.

    Nonetheless, however they do it, it's really automatic. You set your engine size and gas tank size, then you do some calibration when you fill your car up. Just read the manual, and it walks you through all this. Very, very simple...From the instant you plug it in it will start to do stuff, but you will want to read the manual to set your engine/tank size correctly and learn how to use the "FILLUP" function when you put gas in your tank.

    Oh, one thing that's somewhat cryptic is getting trip computer values to appear in the "GAUGE" display. I have "Instant MPG", "Miles to empty", "Tank MPG", and "Current MPG" on the GAUGE display so they're visible all the time. The only one that's a real "gauge" is "Instant MPG", and the rest come from the trip computers. The manual explains how to get many of the trip computer values to display as gauges. It's a little cryptic, but they walk you through it, and you'll get the exact display you want.

    I am finding the ScanGaugeII to be within about 1.5mpg of what I measure when I fill up the tank. Although I try to use the same pump, it's often not the case, so the variance could easily be due to pump differences, etc. Nonetheless, "the higher the better" on those MPG trip computers, and the "Instant MPG" and even fuel flow will give you something to think about as you're driving along!

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "I am finding the ScanGaugeII to be within about 1.5mpg of what I measure when I fill up the tank."

    How does it line up with your rolling average? I ask because as I understand it, the ScanGaugeII can be tweaked up or down to represent a truer Average MPG reading. I know that I have had nearly a dozen cars over the years that have had their own built-in scan gauge type of calculators, and while the average might vary from tank to tank compared to the miles divided by the gallons calculation, they're usually accurate to within three or four percent when compared to a rolling average of at least five tanks of fuel.

    Said another way, if you can get your ScanGaugeII to reflect your rolling average, then yes, tank to tank differences are almost assuredly due to the different points where pumps "click-off".

    Best Regards,
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    ello again, I did not mean to offend, sometimes this impersonal way of communicating does give off the wrong flavor. I was doing it in a humorous kind of way but others may not see it that way. I honestly do not think you checked it properly. If I owe you an appology I am giving one but I do believe if you check it again you will not see 43.6 mpg.
    You did send your offense back so lets just call it even, but I do challenge you to check it again.
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    ello again, I did not mean to offend, sometimes this impersonal way of communicating does give off the wrong flavor. I was doing it in a humorous kind of way but others may not see it that way. I honestly do not think you checked it properly. If I owe you an appology I am giving one but I do believe if you check it again you will not see 43.6 mpg.
    You did send your offense back so lets just call it even, but I do challenge you to check it again.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,380
    I certainly believe 43.6 mpg is achieveable. Our commute range (no fuel miser procedures used) is between 38-42 mpg (automatic if interested) .

    My daughter got 43 mpg on a leg of a trip from the San Francisco Bay Area to LA. Her take (getting 43 mpg) was 70-75 mph.

    The real question is one willing to do what it would take to get that kind of AVERAGE??? Certainly not I !!!

    On a more macro level, the Honda design studio (where the Civic was designed) is located in LA, CA. So it makes all the sense in the world that the Civic is optimized for CA/US driving (for a gasser)
  • Um..... yes i have checked it multiple times because i myself thought that it may have been high, but it is what it is. I filled up at a local sheetz gas station, and while i was there i put the max tire pressure in each tire. Then after I returned home i filled back up and i put in 8.254 gallons and i went 360 miles, and i made sure that gas nozzle wasn't just randomly clicking off so it i tried to top it off and that is all it took, so i don't really know how i could be lying i just did the arithmetic.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    In response to an earlier post, if you have tips for increasing fuel economy, why not share them here instead of asking people to email you for them?
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    That's excellent mileage! Congrats on finding a gem of a car (even if the A/C is broken!).
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,380
    Yes, I would recommend getting the A/C fixed. The longer it stays out of commission, you really don't now if you will do more or less damage. This way if you have it checked you will know exactly how much it will cost to fix. Also it goes without saying the resale value is severely diminished. Getting 43.6 mpg is good but getting 43 mpg when it is 104 outside is well worth it.
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    I did get 44 mpg with a civic hatchback at 70 mph and drove it 295000.00 miles. The civic I drive now gets 43 plus mpg, according to you I must be the 1-2 % that does get the mpg.
    I can advise on how to get these kind of figures.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,380
    Way cool ! No it is not according to me. I just looked at the survey and projected our results with those reported. You can "search" and take a look at the ongoing survey, where I actually got the information.

    Indeed start advising. :shades:
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    There are so many angles on getting more mpg out of your civic, it is hard to just list everything without knowing some specifics about the person and their specific civic.
  • rick119rick119 Posts: 21
    There are many things you can do that may not be cost effective until you have run up 100,000 miles. I have most of the options down and what they will do. Some people just want the mpg and do not mind spending some money to help the oil situation out.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    I think we'd like to see some of your tips!
  • Yeah i 'm really not too worried, the a/c died back in 2003 so it is really no big deal for me. The residual value is not to concerning since the milage is so high and it is not in perfect shape, it is just my college beater, lol.
  • kltronkltron Posts: 21
    ScanGaugeII can be tweaked in two ways that I recall:

    - With FILLUP you tell it how many gallons you put in at your fill up. This tweaks how it senses how full your tank is. I do not know if this tweaks how it calculates MPG, but I think it affects the "Distance to Empty" feature. You do this "FILLUP" action every time you fill up the takes about 20 seconds.

    - You can tweak the accuracy of the measurement of the speed the car is going. They suggest using a GPS to tweak the speedometer in the ScanGaugeII to get it right. Again, I don't know if this tweaks how it calculates MPG. I haven't bothered to do this to any great accuracy, although it seems the Civic's speedometer is within 1mph of my GPS, and the ScanGaugeII is pretty close to that, so at least with a quick check we're in the ballpark.

    In looking at the last few fill-ups, the ScanGaugeII has been fairly accurate (top is most recent):

    SG: 42.4, Me: 42.55
    SG: 42.0, Me: 41.59
    SG: 41.0, Me: 40.38
    SG: 43.3, Me: 41.52
    SG: 43.4, Me: 43.45 perhaps it's a lot closer than I was thinking---I think that 4th one stuck in my head.

    The ScanGaugeII manual is available at their site. Perhaps there are other tweaks that I don't recall reading about. Since I use this as a tool to help me drive the car better (more or less), having a little jitter in the numbers (either my numbers or ScanGauge's) isn't a big deal to me, and I haven't looked to calibrate it closely for the speed measurement anyway. However I do know the gas tank size is set right, and I do the FILLUP thing, as I do tend to rely on the "Distance to Empty" gauge and have seen the low fuel light turn on more than once. :-) But, jeez, it's nice to know it would be possible to get more than 500 miles out of a tank if I really had to with this car.

  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    You must not live in Alabama, like I do! (93 is the forecast for today and tomorrow, and that's pretty average)

    I'd be dehydrated on my afternoon commute without A/C! :sick: :P
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