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Fuel Saving Tips

Passing Cars

With an automatic transmission, manually shift out of overdrive or shift down just before passing. This avoids the need to press the accelerator all the way down to 'engage' the passing gear.

posted by KeithS on April 17, 2010

this tip works for 43% of voting Fuelly members.

watch your Air pressure

Especially now in early spring with the temperatures rising and falling it's imperative to check your tire pressure on a regular basis. An under inflated tire will cost you more fuel and also affect handling.

posted by SamTrooper on April 11, 2010

this tip works for 98% of voting Fuelly members.

Run slightly higher tire pressure...

I have a 2001 Honda Accord. The recommended TP is 30 PSI (cold = car not driven, and no sun on tires). My tires are rated at 44 PSI. I find that I get up to 1 MPG better FE at 35-38 PSI cold. Currently I'm testing out ~40 PSI cold. I have no irregular tire wear, but **slightly** more road noise, vibration and poorer ride quality, and such. Traction seems to be the same or better. Over all, it seems to be a good compromise...

posted by ICantDriveFiftyFive on April 6, 2010

this tip works for 71% of voting Fuelly members.

Ready, set, GO!

When getting out of a stoplight, don't act like you're on the racetrack. Pull away slowly, shift at lower revs as most of the energy generated by the fuel is spent beating inertial strength, from a stopped position to a moving one.

posted by DirtyHarry on April 6, 2010

this tip works for 80% of voting Fuelly members.

Keep her waxed

A slippery Car cuts through the air better than a dirty one. So keep your car washed and waxed, make sure nothing is hanging underneath.

posted by SamTrooper on March 27, 2010

this tip works for 35% of voting Fuelly members.

Low speed driving

At 30 mph don't use top gear, use a lower gear as it makes the engine labour less. On some modern cars & bikes they have a fuel monitor which is not that accurate but it does give you an idea of how much fuel is being used in any given gear.

posted by Neo19 on March 24, 2010

this tip works for 35% of voting Fuelly members.

Buy a motorcycle

A small motorcycle or scooter will easily exceed the fuel mileage of a hybrid and do it at a much lower cost to purchase.

posted by JReazor on March 19, 2010

this tip works for 72% of voting Fuelly members.

Consistent Refueling..don't top off your tank

Of course, to get good readings it is good to be consistent on how you fill up your tank. However, Do not top off your tank. When the pump stops, your tank is full. Any extra you put in is likely to be put back into the station's coffers or will end up out of your tank when your gas in the tank expands.

posted by mtux96 on March 15, 2010

this tip works for 44% of voting Fuelly members.

Install a vacuum gauge

Vacuum gauge is a manifold pressure measuring unit and can be use to monitor fuel consumption. More pressure is more economical. When accelerating, driver can monitor his/her acceleration is in Fair (5 to 10kpa) or Good (10 to 17kpa) needle range to get best of the fuel economy. If driver doing such rapid acceleration, the vacuum gauge reading may at 0 to 5 kpa which is very bad for fuel economy. So, it's important to keep needle at higher number whenever possible. Moreover, vacuum gauge also can give basic condition of your engine health. At idle RPM, the needle should be at 27 to 54 kpa. If the needle stays low at idle speedm, it may indicare that there's a liaking vacuum hose, worn valves or even incorrent ignition timing(knocking).

posted by SeNnDoh on March 7, 2010

this tip works for 42% of voting Fuelly members.

Switch out of defrost mode

Many of today’s vehicles turn on the A/C automatically when you turn on defroster mode, many without illuminating the A/C indicator. You may inadvertently be driving around with your A/C compressor engaged which is killing your mileage. Check it out on your vehicle!

posted by integrator43 on March 1, 2010

this tip works for 88% of voting Fuelly members.

keep to 50MPH

On 'A' roads try keeping your speed to a maximum of 50MPH . I've just done an 'experiment' keeping my Chrysler Voyager 3.3 Auto to 50mph on my 15 mile comute and the on-board MPG computor has gone up over 2MPG over 3 days. I expect this will work best for big cars though.

posted by gareth111278 on February 28, 2010

this tip works for 20% of voting Fuelly members.

Consistent Filling!

When filling the car always do the same thing. i.e. fill it until the pump cuts off OR fill it to the top of the neck. I filled my wife's car & it shows poorer MPG as I fill to the top of the neck, she fills to first cut off. Re LPG - some LPG pumps fill to a greater capacity than others, this can vary your MPG figure too. Gareth

posted by gareth111278 on February 24, 2010

this tip works for 73% of voting Fuelly members.

Don't drive while hungry, angry or tired (if

Often easier said than done, we admit. Aside from the obvious safety issues, these conditions/emotions don't exactly promote patience and gentleness. If you can induce yourself into a Zen-like blissful state, great. Just do your best to avoid these situations -- grab a sandwich, count to ten or catch a twenty-minute power nap.

posted by FAOGozalo on February 23, 2010

this tip works for 73% of voting Fuelly members.

Lift off throttle just before cresting a hill

Use inertia to your advantage. Even if it's not possible to build-up momentum before entering an incline (traffic can play havoc with the best-laid plans), still lift off the pedal as soon as possible near the peak. From this point, it works the same way--built-up energy carries you over the crest while the hardly-working engine practically idles along.

posted by FAOGozalo on February 23, 2010

this tip works for 94% of voting Fuelly members.

Gently accelerate before hills

Whenever you see an incline on the roadway ahead, begin to ever so slightly and gently accelerate. This gradual build-up of momentum lets you keep a lighter foot on the throttle as you enter the hill, and as the crest nears, lift off the gas pedal and the energy of inertia carries your car over the peak and down the other side.

posted by FAOGozalo on February 23, 2010

this tip works for 100% of voting Fuelly members.

Coast down hills and slight grades

Whenever you get the chance, let gravity (that mysterious and wonderful force that affects all earthbound bodies) naturally drag you and your 4000-pound car down every hill you happen upon. The beauty here is that the steeper the hill, the faster you go (and this is with your foot nowhere near the gas pedal). It's like a free ride. And as long as the road is clear of traffic ahead of you, and you're not exceeding the speed limit. Of course - keep a watchful eye, but you will love that long, free coast.

posted by FAOGozalo on February 23, 2010

this tip works for 86% of voting Fuelly members.


I switched to E-0 and found better mileage. Not surprising when comparing the BTU of gasoline and ethanol. As ethanol takes from the food source and is less efficient and more corrosive I will avoid the corn product.

posted by jacktheflash on February 16, 2010

this tip works for 82% of voting Fuelly members.

Manual Transmissions - Shift at lower RPMs

For those of you who drive stick, upshifting at lower revs will use less gas; consequently, driving in a higher gear will use less than driving in a lower gear, as your revs will be lower. Around town, I usually upshift at just above 2000 RPM; sure the engine produces less torque at lower revs, but since you're not racing around elementary schools there's no need to gun it at low speeds. I use the rule of thumb to keep my RPMs always between 1500-2500 RPM, as I feel that's the best compromise between torque and fuel economy. Thus I'll be in fourth gear even just coasting through my neighborhood. Note though - when you are traveling up hills, high gears will actually reduce fuel economy, as your engine has to struggle to climb the gradient with low torque. So everything I said above should apply to level grades only.

posted by realgeneric on February 13, 2010

this tip works for 90% of voting Fuelly members.

Watch pedestrian coundown clocks.

Many communities have timers showing how long a pedestrian can cross the street before the light changes. Drivers can use this coundown and start coasting when they realize they wont make a green light.

posted by yewboup1 on February 9, 2010

this tip works for 93% of voting Fuelly members.


..i think some of these have been mentioned before, but as a reminder: 1) back-in when parking: your engine is warm & more efficient, so once your reach a destination, back in to a parking place (if necessary).. 2) drive thru into a parking spot: if there's no parking curb, pull through the parking spot so that you exit without having to back stores are key places for this..just be sure to check both ways (twice!) when you leave.. 3) at home, back in: once you arrive home, you might as well back into your driveway (always)/garage (if feasible)..your car is warm once you arrive home, so backing up isn't as much of a, when you exit in the morning with a cold engine, you actually save gas, since the vehicle will move on its own (essentially..due to engine torque ??).. 4) avoid warm-ups: other threads (in Tips or the Fuelly Forum) note that most modern cars don't need 'warm-up', you can start-&-go..moving also heats your engine (& your interior) faster, so there's less need for heaters & such.. just some idears/reminders>> --c.

posted by cee on February 8, 2010

this tip works for 67% of voting Fuelly members.

Accelerate moderately

Contrary to popular opinion, the slowest acceleration is not the most efficient. Engines are more efficient at higher torque but less efficient at higher RPMs. You want to accelerate as much as possible without letting the RPMs go too high (over 2500-3000 for many engines).

posted by Morgan on January 24, 2010

this tip works for 93% of voting Fuelly members.

Cut out extra weight

Now I know it goes against this actual website, but I tend to not fill the cars fuel tank if it's not necessary. Having a 70L tank means that, when full, you're lugging around 70kg's of weight... why not just fill 40L's in there?

posted by mErCuTi0 on January 24, 2010

this tip works for 22% of voting Fuelly members.

Winter changes in tire pressure.

Most people know the importance of maintaing proper tire pressure for safty and good mileage. Most people don't know cold, winter temperatures causes air to contact, lowering the pressure and increasing rolling resistance in your tires. Some sources claim a 1 pound decrease for every 10 degree(F) drop in air temp. Maintain extra vigilance in winter in monitoring tire pressures.

posted by yewboup1 on January 22, 2010

this tip works for 92% of voting Fuelly members.

Fill your tyres with Nitrogen

Have your tyres filled with Nitrogen at service centres in the UK and you could reclaim upto a few MPG, cause your tyres to last upto 1/4 longer due to the reduced water content in the gas and prevent corrosion of the inside of your wheels. One such centre is offering this service for 99p per tyre... according to fuelly's MPG saving calculation this will result in it paying for itself quickly.

posted by 99052761 on January 7, 2010

this tip works for 13% of voting Fuelly members.

Replace your tyres with ECO tyres

When your tyres are life expired, have them replaced with ECO 'low rolling resistance' tyres such as Goodyears GT2/3 ECO range. You pay a few pounds more but the saving in fuel consumption is considerably worth it.

posted by 99052761 on January 7, 2010

this tip works for 33% of voting Fuelly members.

Stop 'N' Go Traffic: Stay In Lower Gear

For normal driving, it's best to allow an automatic transmission to do its job and shift when it wants to, but for stop and go traffic I've had better luck staying in a lower gear. Driving at 15 MPH with the gear selector locked in 2nd shows higher mpg using a scangauge due to increased timing at higher RPM, lower load than if I let it shift into 3rd (lower RPM, higher load.) More fuel is saved while decelerating, since the injectors will shut off until less than 1000 RPM (YMMV.)

posted by gathermewool on January 4, 2010

this tip works for 40% of voting Fuelly members.

Speed dosn't kill, its the sudden stop...

OK now that I got your attention... Its popular belief, that to save fuel, the slower you drive the better. And doing this, saves fuel. Not so fast. I've noticed that I tend to drive within 5 MPH, above the speed limit. But 80% traffic is still trying to get around me. The only time I go significantly over the speed limit, is when I encounter, an a sleep 55 MPH (or slower) driver, in the fast lane, in a 65 MPH zone. He/she thinks, 55 is fast enough, and that everyone should slow down to save fuel. However, the end result is, I sped up, to over take them, and use more fuel. With everyone else doing this, this results in ultimately, more fuel being used (By the driving public). Beside the more likely accidents, from all the chaos, that the traffic impeders causes. If slow pokes, used the slow lane, I suspect that the overall speeds, would slow down, AND LESS FUEL WOULD BE USED. So please, if you want to drive slower than the posted speed limit, use the slow lane, or pull over into the, pull-out lane, to allow faster traffic by...

posted by ICantDriveFiftyFive on December 27, 2009

this tip works for 45% of voting Fuelly members.

Check speedo against GPS

If you are tracking your mileage using the trip meter in your car, you may find you are being short changed, on average by about 5%. If you have a GPS, do a quick check yourself, work out the difference by driving at 60mph on your GPS and compare against the speedometer in your car. Typically when doing 60mph on the GPS you will only be doing about 57mph on your speedo. So, if using the speedo to track your fuel usage, you will actually be travelling 5% more than you are tracking, making your fuel economy appear worse than it actually is.

posted by bearmeister on December 24, 2009

this tip works for 48% of voting Fuelly members.

Air Bag Safety

While not so much a fuel saving tip, this one may save your life or that of a loved one. When driving or riding in a car equipped with air bags sit as far back from the air bag as possible. Sitting too close to the dash board or steering wheel may not give enough space for the airbag to properly deploy in an accident. The air bag will still come out, but if you're too close it may break ribs and or damage your internal organs as it crushes you between the air bag and the seat back. Please be careful.

posted by bates on December 24, 2009

this tip works for 67% of voting Fuelly members.

Ride a bike!

I got a Bob Trailer and do my grocery shopping by bike. Its great and you dont need to burn a gallon of gas for a gallon of milk. Mike

posted by cameraperson on December 8, 2009

this tip works for 58% of voting Fuelly members.