Practical Guide To Hypermiling
Hypermiling is a term used for a driving technique where the driving tries to get as many miles as possible out of driving their vehicle. This saves money for people because obviously they will not need to go to the gas pump as often since they will be getting better MPG (miles per gallon). Some hypermiling techniques on the internet are very extreme and unpractical, dangerous, and often illegal. One act that I have seen suggested is shutting off a vehicle while coasting! Of course doing this is very dangerous!
This guide will focus on some very practical ways that you can "hypermile" while staying safe. Of course, it is always the drivers responsibility to make discretion on what is safe or not, but these techniques have worked wonderfully for me and I has helped me to save money on gas!
1. Increase your tire pressure so that your tires will have less road resistance. An increase of tire pressure by 10 psi past the amount on the side maximum pressure on the tire wall is viewed as safe by many people. While you assume all risk, thousands of people post their fantastic results from doing this. Increases of 10+ MPG, less tire wear, and a huge amount of money saved. Tire pressure is a KEY to getting good MPG and the key to save money on gas.
2. Slow starts and time your red lights. Never accelerate fast, and if you time the lights way ahead up the road, you will rarely have to come to a complete stop. From a complete stop much more fuel is used than if you are just moving slowly speeding up. If you have to come to a complete stop, or start your vehicle after being parked, begin driving very slowly to avoid too much gas consumption. Many cars feature DFCO which is deceleration fuel cut off. This means if you let go of the gas pedal while coasting to a stop, the fuel cuts off.
3. Keep your car in good mechanical shape. Especially change the oil, oil filter, and air filter. Along with over inflated tires, keeping a mechanically good running car will give you the most effective gas mileage. You will also want to change your spark plugs on regular intervals depending on when your manufacturer suggests you do it. Often spending money to keep your car in shape will help save money on your fuel usage.
4. Take extra weight out of your car. Whatever you don't need in your vehicle take it out. Some "hypermilers" even take out their spare tire, but for practical reasons, I always suggest people keep a spare tire and a jack unless you always drive within walking distance of home, or have AAA and can wait for a tow. Any kind of trash or extra junk is best to remove it from the vehicle.
5. Drive at 55mph on the highway whenever it is safe for you to do so. Gas mileage in most vehicles is most efficient at 55mph. Though I would suggest you test it between 55 & 65 and keep a record of your gas mileage because it does vary from vehicle to vehicle. Since you naturally will be getting less drag at 55 mph, you'll get better gas mileage which will translate into money savings!
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