Fuel Economy & Emissions Talk about the mileage database, EPA, hypermiling, gas and driving strategy.

Tips to getting the best mpg

  #11  
Old 12-30-2006, 06:02 PM
Enthusiast
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 20
Exclamation Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

Originally Posted by Shining Arcanine View Post
From what I have read, you can improve your vehicle's fuel economy by using a K&N air filter, synthetic oil and iridium spark plugs.
My independent mechanic suggests avoiding K&N air filters as, in his experience, they pass too much grit into the engine's working parts. (Of course he races vehicles in the desert which has to be a grittier environment than most of us experience.) Synthetic oils work, BUT you need to drive your vehicle every day or two. Otherwise, the synthetic oil is so slippery it will drain off all those parts the need lubricating. This makes for much faster engine wear at start up, at least until the oil circulation is up to normal again.
 
  #12  
Old 01-01-2007, 02:41 PM
Active Enthusiast
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Chatham, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 149
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

I'm no oil expert but many of the members of "Bob Is The Oil Guy" forum would disagree with you. They would suggest that synthetic would in fact be better at start up. Go to the forum and see what you think. By the way, no one has been able to come up with any concrete evidence that most of the wear occurs at start-up either. The forum members believe this may just be oil company advertising.
 
  #13  
Old 01-02-2007, 08:23 AM
nash's Avatar
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
Join Date: May 2006
Location: San Diego
Posts: 670
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

Originally Posted by Prius2Camry View Post
My independent mechanic suggests avoiding K&N air filters as, in his experience, they pass too much grit into the engine's working parts.
I have to agree. I used a K&N air filter on my F150 truck and started having problems with rough idle. Dust passing through the filter had built up a ridge where the throttle plate closed during idle, restricting the air enough to cause idle problems! After switching back to a paper filter, the problem went away and stayed away.

Lots of useful tips have been posted. I'll mention some that help me with my TCH:

- Drive with the load - meaning you drop a few mph going up hills, and pick up a few mph going down hills.
- Don't try to drive on EV for long distances. It takes more gas to recharge the battery than keep a steady speed with the ICE running.
- Avoid short trips - mpg is worst during the ICE warmup. Try to combine trips to avoid cold starts.
- Check your tire pressures. Bumping them to 42psi front, 40psi rear helps mpg and handling.
- avoid using A/C or defrost if you can. The TCH has ECO mode (don't know if the Prius does) that helps mpg when using A/C
- Anticipate traffic so you can coast/deadband/or lightly brake for regen when slowing.
- Accelerate moderately. Crawling away from a light and very slowly getting up to speed wastes fuel. Ditto with jackrabbit starts.
- Accelerate a few mph past your desired speed and very gradually drop to the desired speed.

Enjoy your Prius!
 

Last edited by nash; 01-02-2007 at 08:27 AM.
  #14  
Old 01-03-2007, 01:33 PM
Active Enthusiast
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 51
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

K&N's are terrible:

Less filtration = long term damage
Oil = can destroy modern MAF system sensors

Just change the stock paper filter more often and your good to go.
 
  #15  
Old 01-05-2007, 06:05 PM
Enthusiast
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 20
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

I've posted about this on the general FEH forum but thought this discussion was a good place to bring it up as well.

Looking at posts on this site and at hybridcars.com, there definitely seems to be a number of people with Escape Hybrids whose fuel economy is stuck at about 23mpg. Neverminding the sarcastic responses that imply these drivers are a bunch of incompentants, it seems to me that there may be a common mechanical/electical problem with these vehicles. Is it possible, for instance, that the high voltage battery is overheating too often, causing the battery a/c to come on and the gas engine to work harder than normal?

These drivers have experienced low mpgs under diverse conditions and some have gone to their dealers to try to see if there is a problem with their cars. None of the dealers have found a problem but that doesn't mean that there isn't one. The hybrid technology is new and complex and it wouldn't surprise me one bit if some vehicles had a bug or two.

If a significant number of people are experiencing the same problem, maybe a new forum needs to be set up. If the problem turns out to be the vehicle possibly a recall may be in order.
 
  #16  
Old 01-05-2007, 06:11 PM
bwilson4web's Avatar
Engineering first
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 5,613
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

Originally Posted by Mark_bc View Post
. . . there definitely seems to be a number of people with Escape Hybrids whose fuel economy is stuck at about 23mpg. . . . it seems to me that there may be a common mechanical/electical problem with these vehicles. Is it possible, for instance, that the high voltage battery is overheating too often, causing the battery a/c to come on and the gas engine to work harder than normal? . . .
Bummer! It does sound like a problem that needs diagnosis.

I'm in Huntsville AL, are any of those folks in my neck of the woods? Will some of them perhaps be up in Lexington area next Sunday/Monday?

I don't know if I'll be able to make Hybridfest but it does sound like an interesting problem. Feel free to pass on my handle to any of the FEH folks who may be interested in diagnosing the problem.

Bob Wilson
 
  #17  
Old 01-06-2007, 01:40 PM
Enthusiast
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 20
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

I was looking at an interesting website called the hybridexperience.ca which compiled extensive data on hybrid fleets here in Canada. On the site they comment that Toyota's 2001 manual said that the Prius should be driven at least 30 minutes continuously each week to properly maintain the battery.

Now I know this is dated information but it does make me wonder what the effect would be on batteries for hybrid vehicles that have been unused or used very little due to being in storage for long periods of time.
There are still "new" 2006 hybrids on lots out there that would have been in fleet storage for a year or more.

It would be interested survey those who are getting poor FE and see how many bought hybrids that were sitting on the lot for a long time.
 
  #18  
Old 01-06-2007, 03:51 PM
bwilson4web's Avatar
Engineering first
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 5,613
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

Hi Mark,
Originally Posted by Mark_bc View Post
I was looking at an interesting website called the hybridexperience.ca which compiled extensive data on hybrid fleets here in Canada. On the site they comment that Toyota's 2001 manual said that the Prius should be driven at least 30 minutes continuously each week to properly maintain the battery. . . .
With the Prius, there is a slow drain on the 12 DC battery that supports the smart key. The recommended process is if the car won't be driven for over three weeks, either put on a tickle charger or take the battery out or disconnect it.

Bob Wilson
 
  #19  
Old 02-14-2007, 12:23 PM
Active Enthusiast
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 86
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

Originally Posted by bwilson4web View Post
Hi Mark,
With the Prius, there is a slow drain on the 12 DC battery that supports the smart key. The recommended process is if the car won't be driven for over three weeks, either put on a tickle charger or take the battery out or disconnect it.

Bob Wilson
Does the Prius booklet say that? How do we disconnect the 12V DC battery/

Thanks!
 
  #20  
Old 02-17-2007, 05:10 PM
Enthusiast
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 20
Default Re: Tips to getting the best mpg

I tried a K&N filter. My mechanic said they allow more air to pass into the fuel system. BUT, he also said in doing that the K&N also allowed more fine grit into the engine. The net effect was somewhat better gas mileage and better acceleration. Since there is no free lunch, the trade off is REALLY bad engine wear.

It takes a long time of extremely high mileage to cover the cost of a new or rebuilt engine. I had the impression that the engine goes before there is enough savings to pay for the replacement.
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Tips to getting the best mpg


Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.