Increase your gas mileage

It's all about fuel economy

With a few simple changes of the way you drive you can easily improve your mileage by at least 50%. With more advanced techniques you can double your mileage or more.

Hypermiling is about changing your driving style. Most people will look at you funny when you say that. Whether they know it or not everyone has a style of driving. Most of us press the gas pedal to go until we need to slow down or stop then we press the brake pedal. Our right foot is on one pedal or the other. We're either buring gas or burning brake pads. You'll even see some people accelerate rapidly just so they can brake vey hard at the very next light. This is the most wasteful type of driving known as "spilling it".

Re-learn to drive

Now think about the way you ride a bicycle or skateboard or push scooter. You will accelerate to top speed then usually coast until you feel you have slowed down enough to warrant enough burst of power. This is called pulse and glide and it's a style you can adapt to your driving. On a bicycle you are the engine so you are much more aware of when your bicycle uses the engine's power than your car. What is the most welcome sight when you are riding your bicycle? Or course it's a hill... wheee!!! Free travel, the engine gets a rest. If you can put that mentality into your driving style you can see a huge difference in your fuel consumption.

Hpermiling Techniques


Check your tire pressure

1. Inflate your tires to at least the auto manufacturer's recommendations.

The standard tire pressure is 32 lb/sq.in. Hypermiling decrees that you inflate tires to the recommendation on the tire instead which is usually higher pressure than the auto manufacturers recommentation. By increasing the pressure you create less drag and friction. The more pressure the less fricion. Some hypermilers are inflating well into the 40's and low 50's. It s like the difference between a racing bicycle with skinny tires and a dirt bike with thicker tires. I've read that inflating to 40's can add 3+ miles per gallon.

2. Use hills and coast.

If you are driving an automatic your job will be a littler harder than those driving a stick especially if your shifter is on the column. If your shifter is on the floor you will have a much easier time bumping the transmission into neutral for coasting.

Anytime your car is moving but your foot is off the gas pedal you are saving gasoline. Most of us will power our way down a hill when gravity will do all the work for us. The next time you are going down a hill notice your tachometer's reading. You will still be a good bit above idle rpm. The engine will be creating drag which is much more cost effective a job for your brakes.

3. Air conditioning

Using the A/C puts a load on the engine and is going to use fuel. On a nice day or if you are going on a short trip see if you can get by with just cracking the windows a little. Keep an air flow going inside the car.

4. Vehicle weight

Time to get that barbell set out of the trunk or the golf clubs that live there. Extra weight will use more fuel. If you have a Van or SUV with removable seats you might consider taking those out if you don't use them most of the time.

5. Cruise Control


Use Cruise Control

Cruise control should always be used on the highway and on longer stretches in "city" driving. Cruise control eliminates the variability of the human foot on the gas pedal. On the highway your hypermiling involves tire pressure and drafting mostly and also some coasting when the opportunity arises.

6. Drafting

This is not just the close dangerous tailgating of trucks as you've heard (Which I do not recommend). Even following a large truck at a safe distance will reduce your wind drag. Riding in the next lane just behind a large truck will also reduce your wind drag.

7. Vehicle Route

Sometimes the shortest route is not the most fuel efficient especially if you are sitting in traffic. Downhill is always better than uphill. If you can drive downhill to and from work (not likely) you would get great mileage. If you can find a route with less traffic where you are more likely not to be sitting at lights burning gasoline you might do better on mileage. On your regular route you will develop coast patterns. Put your car into neutral and use the hills.

8. Slow acceleration and an RPM limit

For stop and go driving set an upper limit for your RPM and try to stay under it especially during acceleration. My target is 2000 rpm and I use much less gas getting up to my target speed.

9. Braking. Drive as you didn't have brakes

This will be familiar if you've ever driven a boat. The second you see ahead of you that you will need to stop take your foot off the gas pedal and coast. You don't start accelerating again until the vehicle in front of you is out of your way (so you don't have to brake again right away).

10. Timing Lights

As you get familiar with your route you will know which lights you should make and which you won't. If you might accelerate a little to make a light you won't sit there. If you speed up just to sit at the next light then you aren't saving anything. When you know you won't make the next light take your foot off the accelerator early and coast to the light.

11. Keep a record

The easiest way is to fill the tank each time you stop for gas. Get your receipt from the pump. Write down the mileage on your trip counter on your receipt then clear the trip counter. The receipt will already have the exact gallons you put in your car. Divide the mileage by the number of gallons to get your last MPG.

Hypermiling Links

Safe Hypermiling

SUV Hell

Clean MPG

100 Hypermiling Tips

Clean MPG

Clean MPG