September 23, 2005
well as the financially challenged owner of a 94 3/4t 4x4 surburban w/ 4.11 gears and a 350 engine [with 190k miles on it] - a couple quick observations [and yes i am sure that i see such a large differance because the engine is so underpowered and worn out]
SLOW DOWN [and man i really REALLY hate this one]
my fuel mileage increases almost 30% by driveing slower
in town 8 mpg
hiway at 75 mph = 11 mpg
hiway at 65 mph = 12 mpg
hiway at 57 mph = 15 mpg
and yes LIFE SUCKS AT 57MPH
this is what convinced me
75 miles per hour x 40 useable gallons [1 tank] = 440 miles
57 miles per hour x 40 useable gallons [1 tank] = 600 miles
thats 160 free miles per tank and at apx 3$ a gallon fuel it is worth apx
[at 75mph or 11 mpg] 14 gallons extra miles driven = apx 42$ into my pocket [even tho it takes me 8 hours drive time at 75mph vs the 10 1/2 hours at 57mph] this does = out to me earning apx 17$ an hour for sitting in the surburban driveing somewhere] vs working for 10$ an hour this is a hell of a differance
oh and did i mention how much i hate driveing 57 mph ??
there is another thing you can do to any vehicle [all tho it will not look as cool]
PUT SKINNIER TIRES ON IT [and use a less aggressive tread pattern .. something more highway then mud and snow]
yes i "yelled" but its the truth
wider tires mean more rolling resistance which means more fuel
and less traction and alot of other things too ..
try it .. borrow a set of tires off your dads or grandpa's old truck for a trip somewhere just remember that your truck is going to drive differantly now ..
yes tire height makes a differance to gear ratio [so adjust your miles driven if there is a change]
i personally know of lots of vehicles that gain mileage by doing this
how much change depends on way to many variables but we allways see about a 1-2 mpg differance from the wide to the narrow [on my cousins ricer [honda] when he went from his [stylin 18" rims and tires] to a realistic and affordable 13" rim and tire - he gained 8 MILES TO THE GALLON instantly and was no longer stuck every time he tried to drive in the winter .. [now granted this is on a very underpowered car]
the more torque [powerfull] the engine / the better suited the gear ratio / the less you will change the mileage
tread pattern ?? also a consideration .. change to a less aggressive one with a harder rubber compounding and you will gain fuel mileage too.
dont believe me ?? talk to anyone that has a smaller car and runs 4 dedicated snow and ice tires on it for the winter and ask them what the change is ...
and yes i do know what i am talking about and yes i do run both summer and winter tires even with the change in fuel mileage because its WAY WAY SAFER .. traction = no wrecks
and yes your mileage may vary
and yes your style of driveing / road / loads / air presure in tires
all of it makes a differance but still these are options that
work even if we dont want to do them
i will shut up now [thanks]