newby , can you help my Neon ? - Fuelly Forums

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Old 01-04-2007, 10:29 AM   #1
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newby , can you help my Neon ?

I drive a long way to work each day. My Dodge Neon gets an average of 29 mpg. I know it can do better ! I have a wife and 2 kids and need to save some money somehow. Any ideas.
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Old 01-04-2007, 10:44 AM   #2
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Hi, welcome.

Need more info: auto or manual trans?

Describe your typical commute (length, speed, terrain).

Do you know your car's EPA city/hwy/combined ratings?
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Old 01-04-2007, 11:00 AM   #3
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My commute is 45 miles of highway at 65 mph. I have an auto tranny (2.0 SOHC 4 cyl.) engine and an epa rating of 29 city and 33 highway. I would like to help the FE any way I could. It stays tuned up and tires inflated and all the usual fuel economy helpers. I do not drive aggresive. I am 31 years old. I'm past that. I don't even mind losing horses as long as FE is better.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:31 PM   #4
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Drop your highway speed down to 55mph. If there are any steep downhill inclines, allow the car to coast in N with the engine on as long as it's safe to do so and you don't exceed the speed limit. When putting it back into drive, rev the engine a bit so engine speed matches transmission speed (for me ~1500rpm@50mph) and there's less wear on your clutch packs. When you can, drop your cruising speed down to the slowest you can go in top gear.
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I think if i could get that type of FE i would have no problem driving a dildo shaped car.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badgett
It stays tuned up and tires inflated
What pressure? Most folks here are running maximum sidewall pressure (at least) for reduced rolling resistance.

I agree with omg, if your driving is all freeway, slowing down is the surest way to improve mpg. Drafting is another, but I don't like it because of the problem with forward visibility & anticipating safety issues.

Learn to DWL on hills if possible.

Definitely maximize the amount of time you coast, and minimize use of the brakes (try to coast to stops in neutral if possible). This forces you to only use as much fuel as necessary before slowing for a stop (instead of converting gasoline into heat & brake dust).

A comprehensive driving tutorial is linked in this thread: Excellent CleanMPG article on driving technique

What year is your car? If it's 96 or newer, getting a ScanGauge for instant & trip MPG feedback will pay for itself many times over if you're serious about this.
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Old 01-04-2007, 02:39 PM   #6
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badgett,
Welcome! Is your Neon a 2000 or newer? If so, there isn't a whole lot that can be done besides slowing down. I had a '00 Neon with auto and about 35 mpg was the most I could squeeze out of it on the highway. In 2000 they lowered the final drive gearing so the car would have better get up and go.
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Old 01-04-2007, 03:45 PM   #7
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Yup slow down to 55
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Old 01-04-2007, 03:52 PM   #8
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Welcome Badget: It appears to me as if you have some diametrically opposed challenge's. "I have a wife and 2 kids and need to save some money somehow." I'm not very confident you can have a wife and 2 kids, as well as save money somehow. However, I think you'll find their are a number of people on this site who can empathize with your circumstance.

I acquired a 89 Honda Civic Wagon about a year ago, largely because I was getting very exasperated with having to visit the gas station. The Wagon was a fair choice, for me because when I need to take someone, or more than one someone, I can still do it and get fairly decent mileage.

One thing you can do, which will help a bit, is run your tires at a pressure higher than the max on the sidewall. When I boosted mine to 55 lbs I was really surprised at how much farther it would roll, compared to prior. It gives a little harsher ride, but I've been running them their for about 6 months and I haven't seen any other adverse issues, besides the ride.

Their are other things you can do, but if you can swing it, you should get something like a Honda VX, where you can get more like 45-50 mpg. Best of Luck
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Old 01-04-2007, 05:25 PM   #9
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Since your commute is all highway start on the aero mods. They can be done rather inexpensively and will help out quite a bit.
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Old 01-04-2007, 06:00 PM   #10
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Duct tape the grill. Seems to be the single Biggest improvemnt for my vehicle. Second would be the way I am driving now. Slower and more steady speed.
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