Hybrid Tips Optimizing mileage



  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    Yep, that's our same good Ole' Wayne G, Hypermiler Extraordinaire !! :D:D:D:D:D
  • marcbmarcb Member Posts: 152
    Time to spill out all the gory details on how to get 110mpg - no holds barred.

    You owe it to mankind and good ole Mother earth to share your secrets so we can evolve to a higher mileage beings (-;

    oh wait. Does it mean he will be trading his beloved sleek Insight for a Fat Prius?
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    Both your links reinforce my statements.
    Especially the cars.com:
    "As a consequence, your car will bounce around on the road. And when your tires are bouncing instead of firmly planted on the road, traction suffers and so do your stopping distances."

    Bouncing tires!
    Did they just make that up?

    This is a prime example why I try to avoid posting tips on this site.
    What makes you think a half filled gas tank would be slower burning? I assume you mean in a rupture?
    Many years ago a friend of mine had an old matress wrapped around his rear axle and in flames. He had just filled his fuel tank.
    FD came and put it out and said if it were half or quarter full it may have exloded from the fumes that would fill the rest of the tank.

  • kmh3kmh3 Member Posts: 35
    I too found the fearmongering about bouncing tires to be ludicrous, but avoided comment initially.

    Perhaps on gravelly or very rough roads there is a slight penalty, but certainly not from bouncing tires, and nobody is going to go 65 mph on such roads in any case. I am thinking 20 mph tops. :-)

    The PSI tradeoff is simply stiffer ride, slightly less traction, slightly more mpg, and the tires will tend to wear in the center first (rather than around the edges for underinflated tires). I ran my tires at 38-40 PSI for years on my old car and did not have a significant problem with uneven treadwear because front wheel drive cars tend to wear the front tires around the edges anyway so if anything I got more even treadwear from higher PSI and a decent rotation schedule.

    The other tip I thought was good however.

    I think he meant that a less filled tank would lighten the car by about a hundred pounds (if you kept it below a quarter of a tank) which would result in slightly higher gas mileage.

    Don't fret too much misterme, many of us out here appreciate the hints and tricks you have posted (I know I do). It is cool to watch someone get such high lifetime mileage. I know I will never do that, but I am getting the benefit of learning how to do my commutes at very high mileage which was what I bought my car for in the first place.
  • falcononefalconone Member Posts: 1,726
    Makes sense about the tires. Gas OTOH weighs close to 7 pounds per gallon. A full tank in a Prius means you're carrying 84 pounds (doesn't sound like alot). Running a low tank would only yield marginal (if any) better fuel economy.
  • kernickkernick Member Posts: 4,072
    you: A full tank in a Prius means you're carrying 84 pounds (doesn't sound like alot).

    me: I suggest 1/2 a tank, which on a Prius is 42Lb which is about 1.5% of the weight. Do you know how hard engineers work to find 42 Lb of weight reduction? In vehicles with larger tanks this is even more of a factor.

    This is not just applicable to hybrids, but to any vehicle. Lighten it and you'll get better mpg. I've also gotten rid of my jack (9 Lb) - I call roadside service; and don't top off the windshield washer fluid - that is about 8.5 Lb/gal. If you don't use the backseat, get rid of the rear floormats. I guess you could pull the whole rear-seat out, if it wasn't designed to be too difficult.

    You should really walk around your vehicle and think like you were preparing your car to be in a race, where weight is the enemy of speed and economy. How can you lighten your car? What aren't you using regularly?
  • molokaimolokai Member Posts: 313
    Next time I won't have the grand slam breakfast at Denny's. Maybe that will help me improve my mileage too. Oh.. on second thought,,, let me go to the bathroom before I venture out.

    You: Obsessive

    Me: Sensible

    Us: Cooky

    Me: Have to go
  • blaneblane Member Posts: 2,017

    To save more weight, how about a bunch of helium-filled balloons in the passenger compartment. Or, only carrying paper money. The coins may be too heavy. Don't forget to keep your hair trimmed closely. Never wear long pants or long-sleeved shirts either. Drive bearfoot.

    All guaranteed to get those mpg's up.
  • kernickkernick Member Posts: 4,072
    You're right !!! What was I thinking; put a load of bricks in your trunk. ;-) If you look here at Edmund's you'll see they quote a 1-2% increase in mpg for each 100 Lb removed. I'm just giving people some ideas on how to lose that 100 Lb.

    I think it's safer than some of the dangerous ideas here such as max. tire pressures and driving in manners that aren't with the normal ebb and flow of traffic; thus possibly causing accidents and road-rage.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    "driving in manners that aren't with the normal ebb and flow of traffic; thus possibly causing accidents and road-rage."

    Here we can agree, and glad I don't resort to such measures.
    Tonight I'll fill my tank again but not before passing +960 miles on about 13 gallons of gas.
    Not bad.
    I attribute this to a properly set up vehicle and refined driving skills.
  • falcononefalconone Member Posts: 1,726
    Barry... you're TOO funny. I can understand the obsession with achieving better mileage, but at a certain point it gets ridiculous.
  • blaneblane Member Posts: 2,017

    Thanks. I just checked my earlier post and realized another fuel-saving trick. I mistakenly wrote Drive bearfoot. That of course would be carrying much more weight in the vehicle than necessary. I should have recommended diving barefoot.
  • falcononefalconone Member Posts: 1,726
    Actually I just went to the store to pick up some groceries. I decided not to wear underwear and definitely noticed a slight improvement in mileage. Go figure!!
  • blaneblane Member Posts: 2,017
    That's because, aside from your lighter attire, you probably only bought marshmallows and popcorn at the store.

    Very well planned trip on your part. Keep optimizing that mileage.
  • shadow11shadow11 Member Posts: 4
    I have read a lot of posts talking about how to drive to ensure that the electric motors only are on (referring to the Prius and other "full hybrids" that can drive on electric motors only), and I am a little confused about how that helps mileage. After all, the energy to power the batteries ultimately comes from the gasoline that is put into the car.

    From my understanding of how hybrids work, one of the main ways they get better fuel economy is by having smaller engines, and by running those engines more efficiently.

    However, whenever energy is converted from one form to another, I would assume that the conversion is not 100% efficient. If the gas engine was running at a similar efficiency when powering the car as when it charges the battery, wouldn't you get better mileage when the gas engine only is powering the car?

    I would think that when travelling at a constant speed, and with the CVT allowing the gas engine to operate at peak efficiency, you would get better mileage when using gas only. The electric motor helps mileage by providing extra power / acceleration when necessary while allowing the gas engine to operate at peak efficiency, and also by storing the kinetic energy from braking / coasting.

    I admit that I am not very knowledgeable about hybrids, so I was wondering if any of the experts could provide me more insight.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAMember Posts: 4,098
    " After all, the energy to power the batteries ultimately comes from the gasoline that is put into the car."

    You make an interesting point, because if the electric motor were that much more efficient, Toyota would have made an electric car and only used the ICE to charge the batteries. The Prius computer is designed to make the most MPG of any situation, and it would appear that many people get good results from making that battery charge go further before the ICE kicks in.

    Also, remember that the Prius uses regenerative braking - it stores energy into the battery when you slow down. So the battery is also charged by means other than the ICE. You cannot "create" energy, of course; eventually, something has to charge the batteries (namely the ICE).
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaMember Posts: 31,450
    You are correct it is not available in the USA. It is a 98 or 99 crewcab built in Brazil. I tried to import one. Ford dealers in the USA had never heard of a Ranger crewcab, let alone one with a 4 cylinder diesel engine. They are built in Australia also. When someone tells me they are getting 45 MPG I believe them just as I believe the mileage posted here. If someone wants to lie about their mileage, that is their problem. If xcel can get 35 MPG with a gas Ranger, I would think 45 MPG with diesel is not out of reach. Especially with a 5 speed manual that is geared right. Also it was not loaded down with all the emissions equipment that in the case of the Jetta TDI robs about 4 MPG and adds half a ton of CO2.
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi Gary:

    Just 35 mpg? That was just in the winter months ;)


    Good Luck

    Wayne R. Gerdes
  • falcononefalconone Member Posts: 1,726
    That's amazing. I am curious what it would get at a steady 65 mph on the highway with cruise control engaged. I can't see how it would get 37mpg.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAMember Posts: 4,098
    "Hi Gary:

    Just 35 mpg? That was just in the winter months"

    And I thought my 1991 Ranger at 23 MPG @ 75 MPH was good. Of course that was a 4.0 liter, with the limited slip rear end that robbed a bit of the final gear ratio... sure could move coming off the line, though.
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    I just recently learned a new driving method which is helping me Maximize MPG in my manual tranny HCH, and I'd like to pass it on. I wish I had figured this out 14 months agon, when I first bought my Hybrid !!!

    It works thus far only on city streets, have not been on the highway at faster speeds yet. And I have only tested it on a manual tranny Civic Hybrid, with the A/C off, so I have no claims that it works effectively on other Honda or Toyota or Ford hybrid vehicles.

    The method really has two parts:

    1. Accelerating SLOWER after stops, and thus taking only slightly longer to reach cruising speed.

    2. Once you achieve the speed you want to travel, or even 5 MPH faster than the speed you want, release pressure on the gas pedal slightly, but still keep it ALMOST in the same area. What you are trying to get to is actually SLOWING DOWN but at a VERY VERY miniscule rate of deceleration. This allows the car to get into "lean burn" mode and you will see the realtime mpg meter jump up into the 80-100 MPG range almost immediately. Continue with the very very very slight deceleration, just a slight touch on the pedal, and the realtime MPG meter will stay up in that 60-100 MPG area. You will eventually (over a few blocks or a mile or two) slow down 5-10 MPH, but this whole time, you will be achieving at least 60 MPG. Once you feel like you have slowed as much as traffic will safely allow you to, either downshift to 4th gear and accelerate casually back up to the speed you started with, your preferred cruising speed. Or, if traffic allows it, accelerate a little slower while in 5th gear to get back to the desired cruising speed. Once there, repeat the process.

    The very very slow deceleration in conjunction with the slower acceleration up to cruising speed will allow you to achieve max MPG and will drive your numbers up.

    On my current tank, I was at 48.4 MPG and 360 miles on Trip A. I cleared Trip A and now, after two days of using this method, I am at 61.3 MPG after 47 miles.

    I am completely sold on this method, and I hope and expect to maintain tanks in the 55 MPG range from this point on, if I can stay off the freeways !!! :D
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    Good one.
    Wayne/other hyper-milers - can you weigh in on this/similar techniques for non-hybrids as well, please.
    Also can you please comment on coasting in neutral in a manual tranny car.
    By this I mean build up speed, and shift to neutral and coast until speed drops to a certain level, shift back into gear and accelerate... and so on.
  • jpricejprice Member Posts: 58
    Also can you please comment on coasting in neutral in a manual tranny car.
    By this I mean build up speed, and shift to neutral and coast until speed drops to a certain level, shift back into gear and accelerate... and so on.

    Outside of the fact that it is illegal to do this in most if not all states, it would work. The legal issue is that you do not have instant control of the car's acceleration if you're in neutral; in the Prius (the only hybrid with which I'm familiar) the "pulse and glide" technique corresponds to the method described by larsb, except that in the Prius the ICE is effectively "disconnected" from the drive train. It consumes no gas, and the motor-generators supply no recharge to the battery (thus causing no drag to the motion of the car). Yet, if you step on the gas, you have instant power to the wheels - no shift out of "neutral" is required.

    jprice SoCal '05 Silver, #1, 7800 miles, [non-permissible content removed]. mileage 47.5MPG
  • quasar4quasar4 Member Posts: 110
    you: The half-tank idea sounds pretty cool actually.

    me: Thank you; I hope it wasn't already brought up.

    --Everything old is new again....see post #27 in this forum. :D

    --It'd be nice if the hosts could suck off all the actual tips from this forum and put them in a read only file. The few tips presented get lost in all the chatter.
  • typesixtypesix Member Posts: 321
    Coasting in neutral can increase gas consumption. As most new vehicles are fuel injected nowadays, when gas pedal is released, computer will shut off fuel to engine as long as rpms stay above idle. In gear and coasting, the engine rpm will stay above idle till low speeds.In neutral, engine would be constantly feed with fuel to keep idle speed. Only carburetor vehicles would benefit from illegal neutral coasting as engine is constantly sucking air/fuel.
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    Let's say I'm going down a slope, will I be spending less fuel if I leave my car in say 5th gear as opposed to neutral.

    My car is not a new car. It's 13 years old, but fuel-injected of course.
  • typesixtypesix Member Posts: 321
    Yes, should be using less fuel. The info about coasting comes from an ASE certified former mechanic who works for AAA and has a local radio show. As long as speed stays above idle when coasting, no fuel will be used.
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi Typesix:

    It is not just coasting in neutral vs. in gear because in gear will have the engine breaking effect. You have to consider distances covered on a given amount of fuel. Coasting ICE off vs. on is what really pushes FE up. Remember that the average car does not have is an instantaneous. Those that do, you can see everything. Some hybrid’s can and do this natively in certain speed ranges which is the best of both worlds …

    If you would like for your local ASE certified radio show host to tell my how to improve my own FE, I would be glad to hear it. I can guarantee you he doesn’t know how to do this exact task or many of us would have heard about him already.

    Good Luck

    Wayne R. Gerdes
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    Hi Wayne,
    Glad you are back.
    If coasting ICE off is not an option (non-hybrid), do you think there is anything to be gained by coasting in neutral, as opposed to coasting in gear (obviously you can't coast much due to engine braking).
    FYI the car in question is a 5-speed manual.
  • falcononefalconone Member Posts: 1,726
    That's wonderful. My mom has the same car but gets low 20's. How does it do at say average 75-80 on a flat highway? Low 30's?
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi Falconone:

    An average of 63.7 mph with ~ 4 miles of 20 and 30 mph speed zones, 5 stop signs, and 1 Security gate isn’t 75 - 80 mph but I think you get the point ;)


    I would suggest that your mom slow down a tad but that is just me …

    All kidding aside, this was a personal best and I have only achieved a 59 mpg segment high since then :(

    Good Luck

    Wayne R. Gerdes
  • falcononefalconone Member Posts: 1,726
    LOL... You don't know my mom! When she and her sister go down the Atlantic City the barrel down the Garden State Parkway at 75 or so (limit is 65). She gets great mileage and loves her Accord but could never get that type of mileage. Good luck!
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    Some options with my HCH:
    1. Coast with foot off the gas.
    Regen comes on, slowing down the car along with dragging the spinning engine.
    The least efficient option of all of these because you rapidly slow down..
    2. Coast with just enough gas added to stop the Regen and overcome the rotational engine drag. The next least efficient option because you're adding gas to overcome the issues.
    3. Coast in N. No Regen, No engine rotational drag. A more efficient option.
    4. FAS. The most efficient way to travel. Can be dangerous if mis-used. Not for everyone.
    This info comes directly from the fuel consumption display, trip and tank averages.
    Not from a ASE certified former mechanic who works for AAA or has a local radio show. :)
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    4. FAS. The most efficient way to travel. Can be dangerous if mis-used. Not for everyone.

    Pardon my ignorance, but what's FAS.
  • typesixtypesix Member Posts: 321
    The AAA mechanic was responding to a question concerning fuel injected non-hybrid car coasting down a hill. In this case it would be better to leave car in gear rather than neutral.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    Thanks Zodiac2004.

    Forced Auto Stop: Reboot
    Wow! I shouldn't have mentioned that here on this website for all the trolls.

    For example
    Last spring I mentioned my benign use of rolling in N in the middle of the night at 3:00AM, on a deserted familiar rural country road traveled 365 days a year, with a gentle downhill grade where my speed doesn't exceed 35MPH and rolling for 1-2 miles.....just free rolling

    Trolls jumped all over and even an Edmunds moderator compared and equated it to one of his own experiences where he rode his brakes down an unfamiliar mountain pass all the way to the bottom where he didn't know a traffic light was there....and because he over heated his brakes he "careened" uncontrollably through the red intersection with useless brakes and finished his comment with:

    "But hey, it's your neck not mine"

    So much more with Forced Auto Stop.
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    So is FAS a mode you can setup in hybrid cars, whereby the computer shuts off the engine when you are coasting downhill, causing the car to lose the power brakes ?
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    FAS doesn't make any sense in a "full" hybrid, since it uses that downhill opportunity to spin the second motor (not available in an "assist" hybrid) creating electricity for recharging without you ever touching the brakes (fuel to the engine is automatically cut at the same time).

  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    Thanks John, but my question is more about what FAS is and how can it be used to improve FE as pertains to NON-hybrids.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    I'd never suggest FAS in a regular automobile because you loose the assisted portion of your power steering and can crash. However,some do for the large, rapid increase in MPG.

    The procedure is while driving in the right conditions and on a level or slight decline is turning the key back one click to shut the engine off then immediately clicking forward one again to "reboot" the electronics (ABS, EBD, etc). This allows you to travel for potentially long distances fuel-free. In the case of the hybrid automobile, there is no battery usage therefore no fuel-robing "Payback" for recharging the battery.

    The power steering in a HCH or AHA is electric, so you have full power steering.
    While the brakes remain functional, you have the assisted portion as long as the vaccume reserve remains.

    Rolling in N has brought some very heated debates here regarding safety, so much more for FAS and I really regret mentioning it in my earlier post.

    While it remains one of many "Tools in the box" for hypermilers there is no doubt a large and real safety issue if used improperly under poor judgment and I don't want to start another big Edmunds argument so I'll just say don't do it.
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    Thanks for the answer, Steve.
    I can't understand why people rag on you for suggesting FAS. If people don't understand the consequences it's not your fault.
    Me personally, I wouldn't try it under any circumstance since I'll lose PS and PB quickly, and no FE improvement is worth that to me.
    But that's my decision and I'll hold you in no way responsible if I do try it and get into trouble.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    The fact is that people here are getting poor, good, great and fantastic mileage- and everywhere inbetween.

    I'm breaking my personal rule today of not posting tips on the combative Edmunds boards.
    While this incomplete list seems pretty much common sense to many...and contains few hybrid-specific references don't just disregard them....that is if you desire better fuel savings. None of these are exotic, extreme hypermiler examples but can gain you 50% fuel savings or more, depending on your current habits.
    Don't fool yourself into thinking you're doing all you can to save fuel. I'm not despite my own measures that net 65-69MPG +900mile tanks. We can always find somewhere to improve.

    Create a "Work" Space
    Leave plenty of room to the vehicle in front of you. If the traffic ahead slows, you will have a buffer to maintain momentum and conserve energy, allowing you to plan ahead. I use a buffer of 500-1,000 feet or more. As an added bonus, the vehicle in front of you won't be spraying gravel on your car.

    Alternative Routes
    Try different routs for common trips. I could use the freeway for 99% of my daily commute. I have learned instead to take about half of my commute using a parallel highway. I travel an extra mile but this way I avoid freeway speeds and traffic while gaining more than 10 MPG.
    It's also helpful to memorize common routes.
    If your vehicle is not equipped with a good, accurate real-time MPG meter it will help to keep a log between fills to determine which way saves you more.
    Be familiar with your route- know where a little gas is required and where you can coast.

    Driving speed
    Wind resistance roughly doubles between 55 MPH and 70 MPH.
    As a rule of thumb, consider driving the speed limit or lower while in the Right lane and save alot.

    Quality of Gasoline
    I haven't noticed any performance changes from the most expensive gas to the cheapest. Use regular-unleaded if your car manufacturer suggests it.

    Air Conditioning & Windshield Defroster
    The A/C system decreases your mileage, especially in smaller cars.
    If you desire savings, wait to activate the A/C button until rolling down a hill or decelerating. Otherwise keep it off.
    This way the momentum of the car runs more of the A/C instead of the fuel.
    Lastly, be sure the Air conditioning or defroster is off while climbing a hill.

    Windshield Defroster
    The A/C compressor is automatically turned on when the heater is set to defrost and the fan is set to ON. This way the moisture that has condensed on the windows will evaporate faster.
    Normally, you don’t need to just keep your defroster running because it wastes fuel.
    If you set the knob to defrost but keep the fan set to OFF the AC compressor will not run.
    With this setting, there will be a steady flow of air over the window to help keep it clear. If they begin to fog up you can briefly switch the fan to a middle-high setting until they clear, then switch the fan back to OFF.

    Tire pressure
    Low tire pressure will rob you of your MPG. Every car has a door sticker in the driver side door jam, and these pressures should be considered MINIMUM.
    Higher pressures will give you greater savings, but at the expense of a harder ride.
    Every tire has a maximum cold pressure rating imprinted on the side of the tire.
    You can go as high as that rating while the tire is cold (Not driven for an hour) but
    do not exceed that maximum rating. Check them weekly.

    Beginning from a Stop
    This is where you kill your mileage numbers.
    Accelerate as gradually as practical, gradually backing off the accelerator as you increase speed. Accelerate slower if there is no traffic behind you.
    Hybrid owners use as little battery or Asssit as possible. My HCH accellerates just fine after 25-30MPH in the 40-60MPG range on a level road.

    Climbing a Hill
    Bigger hills are the second main MPG killer.
    If this is a familiar route, perhaps you can find a different road going around the hill. Pick a route that doesn’t add significant distance to your trip.
    Learn to drive with the load.
    That is, don’t maintain speed climbing hills.
    If you know a hill is ahead, gradually increase your speed on your approach.
    Try to guess the time it will take to reach the top. Also decide the minimum speed required at the top.
    As you climb the hill, gradually slow down and attempt to time it so the minimum speed is reached near the top. If the traffic is extremely light with nobody behind, then you can let your speed really sag.
    If you reach the top of a tall hill and find a short flat area that leads to another big hill you are at a disadvantage because of your minimum speed. Accelerate as gradually as you can on the flat area and time the next crest as you did for the first hill.
    That technique can be applied from the smallest to the longest, steepest hills.
    HCH owners- The vast majority of steeper hills can be made with bare minimum IMA Assist locked in @ 40MPG. For extra fuel savings try it first with no Assist @40MPG (or more).

    Rolling Down a Hill
    Always plan ahead.
    If you know the decline is immediately followed by a steep uphill begin your decent coasting (Foot off the gas or switched to N if you choose) then as you near the bottom add enough acceleration to gain momentum for the onslaught of the incoming hill. If the hill flows down to a long, flat road at the bottom then keep your built momentum.

    Don't drive only by how it "feels". If it seems like you are slowing down don't just blindly push the accelerator down. That it is usually a difficult habit to break. Only use enough fuel for the task required. Don’t just “Gas it”, no matter how much or how little. Have a reason.
    Listen to traffic reports on the radio. If you hear of a backup go around if possible.

    Miscellaneous Tips
    *If waiting in a line (fast food, etc.) set your parking brake and put the shifter into neutral. Turn the key one click to turn the engine off (provided that you do not need A/C, defroster, etc.).
    If you need the fan, radio, etc then click once to on again but do not restart the engine until the line you are waiting in has moved at least a cars length. Don’t just let it idle while stopped.
    However, the stopping-restarting, stopping-restarting again is not recommended while in traffic due to starter wear on non-hybrid vehicles.
    *If waiting at a light and the car ahead of you "creeps" ahead a few feet, do not follow. Stay where you are.
    *If your route uses a toll booth, get a cruising pass. That way you don't have to stop and fight traffic.
    *Keep your car's momentum, even around corners if it can be done safely.
    *Try to time traffic lights so you can cross without stopping. Approach the red light more slowly to be more successful in timing.
    *When you get into the car and start it, don't waste time. Don't just stay parked to let it warm up. Buckle up, get in gear and get going.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    *Allow extra time to accelerate when the engine is still warming up. Your engine is a fuel PIG for the first 5-20 minutes. Keep your cabin heat off or low for the first 5-10 minutes of winter driving.
    *Some people are putting Mobil 1 Trisync oil into their cars and gaining MPG.
    *Keep the oil level on the full mark, not above or below. Keep it changed.
    *Keep the alignment maintained. Have a clean air filter.
    *Keep in mind that on a flat, level road a vehicle gets its best MPG while just maintaining a constant speed between 40-50MPH.
    *For a quick boost in MPG while coasting, you can back off the accelerator and put the transmission into neutral and let the engine idle. The longer distance you roll while in N the more dramatic your savings will be. This is a good time to switch on the A/C if you are working the button to conserve fuel.
    Especially good judgment must be used in this case. You can crash so extreme caution must me made.
    Maximum speed while in N should remain slow, and on familiar roads where it can be done safely.
    (Not mountain passes while traveling on your family vacation)
    Note: Be sure to raise the engine's RPM by stepping on the gas a little to about 1.5-2K RPM before re-engaging the transmission. That is called "Rev-Matching" and will prevent transmission strain.
    If your shifter is located on the steering column (Not in a console) I'd avoid this procedure. Column shifters can be difficult to move accurately quickly.
    * HCH owners be sure to get into lean burn when ever possible. If you're riding on level ground or on a decline in the 40-48MPG range for heavens sake back off ever so slightly until it spikes in the 80MPG range (Or more) hold it there as long as possible. If you're in a place with few stops then miles upon miles can be maintained in lean burn.

    Final important notes:
    You can implement these tips a little and see minimum if any result.
    Or, you can work them to the extreme maximum and see amazing results.

    Remember you MUST be consistent.

    For example;
    You can drive carefully using these tips for great results, but then one day you're late and drive hard get there fast.
    Or, You're mad at another driver(s) and gas hard to pass.
    You can blow a whole weeks hard earned MPG in just one trip....just like some blow their whole savings overnight in Vegas.

    Another benefit of consistency is creating the routine of good habits....along with consistant fuel savings.

    I hope that helps.
    -Steve (Hot Georgia)
  • zodiac2004zodiac2004 Member Posts: 471
    Absolutely great, Steve !!
    Thanks a lot.
    I just have one question.

    Maximum speed while in N should remain slow, and on familiar roads where it can be done safely.

    Why is this ? What's wrong with coasting at 60-65 mph with the tranny in N in a 5-sp manual.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    Thanks Zodiac2004.

    I put my slow, familiar road comment in an attempt to head off confrontation, as I didn't want to distract from the message of the post.
    FAS is also missing for that reason.

    I personally coast in N under those conditions which it can be done safely, but be sure to rev-match upon re-engagement.

    (Not uncontrollably careening down a mountain pass on a family vacation) ;)
  • stevedebistevedebi LAMember Posts: 4,098
    Good tips, all.

    RE: Accelerating from a stop. One has to consider the individual car. My 2003 CR-V gets better MPG if I accelerate moderately but not "jackrabbit" style. I found that doing really slow acclelerations actually caused the car to stay at higher RPMs for longer periods, resulting in lower MPG. It all depends on the engine CPU and how it is programmed.
  • heyjewelheyjewel Member Posts: 1,046
    "68MPG by the end of the day in my HCH. "
    "Our Grand Caravan went from 16-17MPG to 21-26 as a direct result of what we learned in our hybrid car- another major benefit of our purchase. (Lessons learned lasts a lifetime) "

    You know, Misterme, these numbers are a little bit on the Ripley's side aren't they? I mean, you say you get 65-68 mpg in a car that the EPA etimates at 47. That's almost 50% better than estimates. How can u explain that? Then u say you get 26 in a grand caravan, up from 17 because of lessons learned in the hybrid. What possible lessons could you have learned that increas the mileage of a minivan by more than 50%??? What, shut off the engine going downhill? Lasso a car in front going up? C'mon man, your stories leave a little bit to be desired in terms of believeability.

    If u really do achieve these numbers, I want to go into business with you - a driver's school which teaches people how to save 50% on their gas costs.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    Hello Heyjewel:
    Some pictures-
    931 Miles and shows 66MPG at fillup but calculated to just over 68:
    (Personal record is 941 miles/69.2 calculated)
    A nice trip to work:
    A particularly nice one back home:

    I have alot of these photos.

    The engine stays running in the GC for safety and starter wear, but if you wonder how, contrast the implement of some of these tips against an aggressive style:
    misterme, "Hybrid Tips: Optimizing mileage" #323, 30 Sep 2005 2:03 pm
    Nothing there is revolutionary, just alot of common sense.
    But just reading them does nothing. They must be implemented to be effective.

    Driving school- If you're serious let me know. Others may be interested as well.
  • aaron_taaron_t Member Posts: 301
    My problem is that many of those tips will increase my drive time, which is already an hour each way for work. Another 30 minutes every day (15 each way) give me 2.5h more to spend with my family. In fact, I despise people that practise some of those techniques in rush hour traffic, but that's for another forum. My time is worth more than getting 25%, even 50% better fuel economy given the same vehicle is used.
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    "My problem is that many of those tips will increase my drive time, which is already an hour each way for work. Another 30 minutes every day (15 each way) give me 2.5h more to spend with my family"

    In my case, taken to the extreme increases time by about 10 minutes each way, or about 20 minutes a day. It's not just about going slower, although it plays a part, but how one handles the endless choices given on every drive.

    "I despise people that practise some of those techniques in rush hour traffic"

    Interesting twist. Nobody said all of those techniques are appropriate for rush hour traffic.
    If nobody is impeding traffic or bothering anyone else why do you have a problem if someone saves fuel dollars?
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