Increasing your vehicle’s gas mileage

Doing things to increase your car’s gas mileage immediately pays off. And the main concept is simple: you’ll spend less money on gas if you increase your car’s efficiency in using it. Here are a few techniques that you can apply right away.

Speed up with not-so-much throttle – Engines are most efficient with moderately high air flow (throttle) at engine speed around 4000-5000 RPM. When accelerating, do it smoothly with moderate throttle and engine speed in the 4K-5K range and you’ll save fuel.

Inflate your tires to the right pressure – Properly inflated tires can cut down fuel consumption by up to 7 percent.  This is a substantial decrease and chances are that your tires are not inflated to their proper pressure because they are constantly losing air.  About 1PSI each month, as matter of fact.

Plan trips – We know that a lot of you are going to laugh about this one but if you create a list of your needs so that it requires just one trip instead of many, you will save!  Make lists of needs that will require a trip and try to accomplish multiple goals with each.  It’s really a powerful idea!

Keep the engine maintained – In the old days they were called tune-ups but regardless of the phrase used today, the concept still rings true: a well-running engine will be more efficient than an old one with old sparkplugs, old ignition wires, dirty air and fuel filters and dirty oil.  Your mechanic or car dealer will be able to look at the condition of these items and provide advice.

Is the “check engine light” on – This light might come on because you need a new oxygen sensor and this will absolutely kill a car’s efficiency – up to 20% less gas mileage in many cases.

Lighten the load – Believe it or not, lightening a car’s load will improve your gas mileage because less kinetic energy is used when accelerating. Here’s a statistic for you: an extra hundred pounds increases fuel consumption by 1 or 2%.  If the trunk is loaded with heavy stuff that you never use, take some of it out.  If you have a third row of seats no one uses, then put it in your garage.

Use synthetic oil – When you are getting an oil change, put in a good synthetic oil. Synthetic oils are a bit more “slippery” than conventional oils and this can increase your gas mileage by up to 15%.  

Use cruise control – In many situations, using your cruise control cuts down fuel consumption by 5-6% by maintaining a constant speed.  This, of course, can’t help you if the majority of your driving is stop-and-go but while on the highway, use your cruise control as often as possible.

We hope these tips are going to come in helpful for you while you are on the road. Thank you to the Service department at Bosak Honda Michigan City, a full-service car dealer in Michigan City, IN, for sitting down with us to discuss fuel economy!

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