► "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (Tips and Questions) - Honda-Tech


► "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (Tips and Questions)

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Old 04-24-2008, 08:19 PM   #1
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Default "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (Tips and Questions)

I closed the old thread because it was 10 pages of people complaining and only a small amount of good information spread out too thin.

I kept two of the best quotes I found on the last page.


Quote:
Originally Posted by IB Adrian
Fuel mileage tips

1. Don't buy an auto! (unless you live in a market that gets the CVT)
2. Run tyres at at least 36psi all round
3. Upchange before 2krpms where possible.

Driving my cousins Jazz with the 1.5 5 speed I average around 45-49 US mpg...
1. I agree for the most part. The auto will more than likely get less mpg than the manual due to being able to shift earlier.

2. Make sure your tires are aired up to AT LEAST 32psi. The more the better 'til a certain extent. (Don't get crazy, 36 will probably be as high as you want to go.)

3. Shifting @ 2,000 RPM might be a little low for some situations but if you're trying to save fuel, stay under 3,000 RPM for sure. Throttle position is also a very important part of this. Use as little throttle input as possible to MAINTAIN your speed.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Targa250R
<FONT COLOR="red">Yes, driving habits can make a 30% difference in mileage</FONT>, especially since you're in the "abnormally low" spectrum. If you're only getting 26mpg in a Fit, then you're either driving in conditions not conducive to fuel efficiency, or doing something drastically wrong. I get 26mpg in my 4WD AT CR-V.

I would imagine it's been cold up there in MA up until this point. A cold engine runs rich and burns more fuel, and takes much longer to warm up in cold weather. This can put a significant dent in your mileage. Do you let the car sit and idle to warm up on cold starts? Do you sit in traffic often or do most of your driving in stop-and-go conditions? All of these things will work against you.
I have proof that his first statement is true. I just drastically changed my driving habits and I have gained approximately 30% of my previous fuel economy. At $3.50/gal it was well worth the effort.

I have STOPPED using the cruise control. I was addicted to it. I drive a lot of highway miles and cruise control felt like a godsend but its the DEVIL

The following are the things I have done to go from 32mpg to 44.5 on my last fill up:

1. As I recently stated, NO CRUISE CONTROL!
The cruise control will constantly add throttle to maintain speed.
2. Smallest amount of throttle possible.
I can't stress this one enough. If you floor it, the Fit will still won't move any faster, no need to over do it. If you're cruising with your foot on the gas pedal and you quickly let off and you feel the car jerk, you're using too much throttle. Sounds crazy but it works.
3. Keep those RPMs down!
Shifting before 3,000 RPM in 1st and even lower in other gears helps a lot. Doing the speed limit also helps.
4. Check your tire pressure!
Make sure you have at least 32psi in those tires. 36psi is better

[b]I'm sure there are other things you can do to help get better mpg but those are what I have done (minus the air pressure, I forgot to check). Keeping unnecessary weight out of the car, cruising (in gear) towards the stop light and using your best timing skills to get there after the light turns green, not spending a lot of time warming up the car (idling), are all things that will help and combined will stretch your dollars at the pump.

This advice isn't for anyone in a rush to get somewhere. I have even had people flash me because I was doing the speed limit
If you're in a rush, leave earlier. Otherwise, don't follow these rules which were written to help those looking to get the most out of each gallon of fuel.

I have gone from 32mpg (80% hwy) to 44.5mpg (80% hwy). My previous best was still 44.5 but that was 100% highway and using cruise control while getting a lot of down hill time.

When I filled up tonight, I had this shocked look on my face and my GF asked me "whats wrong" to which I replied "How many miles per gallon do I usually get?" she said "32 right?" and I broke the news... "Well this time I got 44.5"

I guess I need a new MPG sticker, maybe "40 mpg +"?

Hope this helps, guys.

P.S. For those that don't know:

Miles driven / Number of gallons needed to fill tank = MPG
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Old 04-25-2008, 01:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (eL)

Slowing down FTW! Went from 33 MPG to 37 after slowing down. 75 mph down to 65mph. This is in a stock automatic 89 Civic hatchback btw (lurking in the Fit forum lol). I read on Ecomodder.com that the faster a car goes, the harder it is for the body to cut through the air bubble that is created in front of the car. The air will press back on the car and cause the motor to work even harder- resulting in lower MPGs.

Slow acceleration helps out a lot as well. I'm seeing how well coasting out of gear to a stop vs. in gear coasting does. It's an auto but I still toss it in and out of gear.
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Old 04-25-2008, 02:01 PM   #3
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Default Re: "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (D50boy)

awesome el!

and, yeah, reduce your speed. according to my scangauge, 50MPH in fifth gear = 50MPG. 40MPH in fourth gear = 50MPG
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Old 04-26-2008, 06:51 AM   #4
 
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Default Re: "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (eL)

Just a quick tip to be sure you are calculating your mileage as accurately as possible. This is because I was getting inconsistent readings ranging from 34 to 46 mpg while maintaining the same driving conditions on the same commute.

08 Fit Sport 5spd manual

Be sure your tank IS full. Due to the placement of the FIT's tank and the design of the filler neck you need to "burp" your fit. What do I mean by burp? Fill up until the gas pump clicks off. At this time you should be able to get another 1.5 to 2 gallons into the tank. It is very inportant to try to squeeze this extra amount into your tank for an accurate reading (Again, due to the tank location and design of the filler neck, if the FIT is nose slightly down you will get more fuel in the tank than if the car is nose slightly up). So the burping starts when you top the tank off. After the pump clicks off, start to fill the tank again with about 1/2 "throttle" on the pump. When it clicks off again wait a second and you will hear a gurgle/burp come from the FIT as the air in the top of the tank is pushed out. You will have to keep going for a few miutes, but you will get close to 2 more gallons in the car. Normally mine first clicks off at 9.5 gallons, whe I fill up just after the indicator light comes on. Then, I can continue to fill up to 11.5ish somtimes 12 if I run for a long time on the light. If you are lucky you will be filling up at a pump that will allow you to pump gas slow enough that the air can exit at the same time which helps speed up the burping process. The main problem with this is that when you get close to the end of the burping you have to be very careful not to squirt gas out on you.

After doing this at every fill up I was able to get consistent results showing 39-41mpg. This allowed me to refine my MPG driving techniques and truly test different methods. I have tried adding coasting down hills. Coasting to lights etc. etc. and have gotten up to 42-44mpg. Recentley I tried some new techniques that with mild use have gotten me up to 45+. It helps a lot on my 76 mile one way commute.
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Old 04-26-2008, 04:40 PM   #5
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You're not really supposed to "top off" your tank.

Also, the Fit gas tank is rated as 10.8 gallons.

"Topping off your gas tank after the pump automatically turns off can harm a vehicle emissions system that re-burns fuel vapors. The pump at your local gas station is designed to turn off when the fuel reaches a certain level, leaving room in the tank that is needed for the emissions system to operate correctly.

When that air dome is reduced from topping off your tank after the pump automatically clicks off, raw gasoline can enter one of the system's important components that's only supposed to carry vapors: the carbon filter also called the charcoal canister.

When raw gasoline enters the canister/filter, it can spill on the ground (meaning it'€™s not going into your engine both a waste of gasoline and an environmental no-no) and it can disrupt engine operation, causing bad mileage, poor emissions and overall decreased engine performance. An Automotive Service Excellence representative we talked with says except for rounding to the nearest dime, never fill the fuel tank once the automatic shutoff clicks at the gas pump."
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Old 04-27-2008, 04:40 AM   #6
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On the most recent tank (60% city, 40% hwy) with the econo-summer rubber back on (35psi) the Fit got about 34 mpg. Lower than usual, I think the fact that my brother was driving 75mph and had the defogger on pretty much the whole time. I'm going to try and break 38 mpg all city driving next tank, we'll see how that goes.
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Old 04-27-2008, 05:31 PM   #7
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38 mpg this last tank.

ive figured out that it takes the same amount of gas to maintain 55mph, or to speed up to 100 and then coast back to 55
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Old 04-27-2008, 05:53 PM   #8
 
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Default Re: "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (eL)

Also, not using your A/C or driving with your windows down will help save gas.

The big ones are throttle percentage (be it as crusing or at acceleration) and rpms/speed.
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Old 04-27-2008, 07:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BudgetFitting
Also, not using your A/C or driving with your windows down will help save gas.

The big ones are throttle percentage (be it as crusing or at acceleration) and rpms/speed.
i agree with both of these. i was testing some things today, with the car on cruise control at 75mph, with the AC on, i lost ~6 mpg. with all windows down i lost ~3 mpg.
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Old 04-28-2008, 05:06 PM   #10
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Don't agree about the A/C; I Live in Brazil ( hot country ) and it's difficult to drive comfortably w/o the AC on... I filled up, made the same course, with the same traffic conditions and driving technique, even the same Fuel station, same fuel pump, stopped filling on first click. One time with the A/C on, and one with the A/C off. No Highway use.

No AC : 32,54 MPG
AC : 31,8 MPG

as you can see, not much of a difference. And i have figured out, that cruising at Aprox. 45 MPH in 5th gear, i can easily get over 47 city driving MPG if the traffic is good...

In Brazil we have the L13A 1.3L 80HP Fit, I have one of these with MT tranny. No Cruise Control ( BR Fits don't have it ).


Modified by Dudles at 2:36 PM 4/29/2008
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Old 05-02-2008, 02:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudles
Don't agree about the A/C; I Live in Brazil ( hot country ) and it's difficult to drive comfortably w/o the AC on...
Same in Florida. Turned my AC on last month and probably won't turn it off again until late October or early November. I also don't detect much difference in the mileage with or w/o the AC. Having the windows open above 40 or 50 mph is counter productive.

Dudles, if they sell the 1.3, do they offer the CVT in Brazil?
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Old 05-02-2008, 03:07 PM   #12
 
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Default Re: (Dudles)

[
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudles
Don't agree about the A/C;
Whether you agree or not, when the A/C is on it creates added drag on the engine. It would be like saying that driving up a slight hill for a considerable amount of time would not effect gas milage. The numbers you listed do show a difference, and it is tough to be measured accurately unless all other variables are kept constant.

I was not saying that the A/C is a HUGE contributing factor to mpg, but lowering A/C usage will increase gas milage; and when coupled with other gas saving techniques it will help produce the best mpg.
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Old 05-02-2008, 03:14 PM   #13
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Here we Have these models :

LX MT = 1.3 Flex** - AC, PS, PW, Power Lock, Driver Air Bag, No Sound System. 14" Steelies
LX AT = 1.3 Gasoline - Same as above + CVT Tranny
LX-L MT = Same as LX MT + Passenger Bag, ABS, EBD, Stereo and 14" Cast rims.
LX-L AT = Same as LX AT + Passenger Bag, ABS, EBD, Stereo and 14" Cast rims.
EX MT = 1.5 Flex** - Same as LX-L MT + Different rims and Chrome housing Headlights.
EX AT = 1.5 Gasoline - Same as LX-L AT + Different rims and Chrome housing Headlights.

I Think is funny to see ppl here asking how would it look to have Black housing headlights. We have black housing headlights in every colour, every model Fit's except the 1.5l ones.

Flex** = Here in Brazil we are blessed to have Ethanol right off the fuel pumps at Gas Stations. So our engineers developed ECU's that detect the fuel in the tank using and exaust sensor, and adjust their parameters to run with every mix between Gasoline and Ethanol. They're called Flex Engines. They don't offer it with the CVT tranny because they say thet the Tranny would get messed up with the fuel changes (don't think so, but whatever ).

We Have here Fit, Civic, Accord and CR-V. Fit's don't come Flex only in the CVT ones, Civic's are all "flexes". Mine is still Gasoline engine because Flex was offered only in 2007 models... mine is a 2004/05 model.

Let me re-write what i said. Don't think that the AC's decrease of MPG, can justify the comfort of using AC all time in my case. And "Opened windows/no AC" cause more aerodynamic drag from 50 MPH then the engine drag caused by "Closed Windows/AC on".



Modified by Dudles at 4:21 PM 5/2/2008
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Old 05-02-2008, 06:15 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudles

Flex** = Here in Brazil we are blessed to have Ethanol right off the fuel pumps at Gas Stations. So our engineers developed ECU's that detect the fuel in the tank using and exaust sensor, and adjust their parameters to run with every mix between Gasoline and Ethanol. They're called Flex Engines. They don't offer it with the CVT tranny because they say thet the Tranny would get messed up with the fuel changes (don't think so, but whatever ).

Let me re-write what i said. Don't think that the AC's decrease of MPG, can justify the comfort of using AC all time in my case. And "Opened windows/no AC" cause more aerodynamic drag from 50 MPH then the engine drag caused by "Closed Windows/AC on".
Dudles: So if you fill up with Ethanol, is the fuel mileage less than with gasoline? If so, how does the cost per mile compare, do you think?

As far as the AC use is concerned, that is my thought as well. When it is 98F/37C in the shade, but there is no shade to be had, and the humidity is 80 to 90%, you will be pumping the AC, too. People out west, where it gets even hotter, but where the humidity is low, might find it strange that you can't just roll the windows down and be comfortable. You certainly won't be driving around here in the warm months with the windows up without the AC on.
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Old 05-03-2008, 04:02 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbrd

Dudles: So if you fill up with Ethanol, is the fuel mileage less than with gasoline? If so, how does the cost per mile compare, do you think?
The point is : 87 Octane Gasoline ( That here, comes with 27% of non-Hydrated Ethanol ) costs about US$ 5,70/Gal. Hydrated Ethanol (from the pump ) Costs about US$ 3,40/Gal.

The Average MPG is :
Ethanol : 28,5 MPG Highway, 19 MPG City (211 City Miles Authonomy )
Gasoline : 38 MPG Highway 28,5 MPG City (316,6 City Miles Authonomy )

The Costs Would be :

Ethanol : US$ 38,00/Tank. /// US$ 38 / 211 City Miles = Aprox US$ 0,18/Mile
Gasoline : US$ 63,30/Tank. /// US$ 63,3 / 316,6 City Miles = Aprox US$ 0,20/Mile

Now, the Ethanol is cheaper to fill up... but since is an bio-fuel, agriculturally produced, when the "cana-de-acar**" is growing, and there's not much "Cana" to produce ethanol, it becomes more expensive, then, Gasoline is the best choice. The Ethanol price should be under 67% (because when filled with Ethanol, the engine needs around 43% more fuel then when filled with Gasoline ) of the Gas price to be cheaper to use.

** = "Cana-de-acar" is the name of the vegetal that the Ethanol comes from. Don't know if it has an English name. In England they produce ethanol from Canola, and I believe US is interested in producing Ethanol from Grains. But the Cana-de-acar ethanol is the cheapest one to produce, And England even thought about importing Ethanol from Brazil instead of investing in the Grain production.

Sorry to change the initial focus of the topic, but I think any info about ethanol is an interesting info, because sometime in the future years, I think you all can be running on pure Ethanol instead of this E85 thing.

Modified by Dudles at 5:09 AM 5/3/2008


Modified by Dudles at 5:10 AM 5/3/2008
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Old 05-03-2008, 05:56 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudles


** = "Cana-de-acar" is the name of the vegetal that the Ethanol comes from. Don't know if it has an English name.
It is a literal translation from the Portuguese: sugar cane. And don't apologize for going off into discussing Ethanol. This is the fuel economy thread. It is good to know we should pay less for alcohol blends, because we will get fewer miles out of a tank. I guess there is less carbon in a gallon of alcohol than a gallon of gasoline?

How do they get non-hydrated ethanol, I wonder? In chemistry I learned you could never get rid of the last bit of moisture when distilling ethanol. I googled this just now and it returned your previous post.
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Old 05-04-2008, 05:19 AM   #17
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It's just a translation problem, as English is a non-fluent language in my country, it's difficult for me to translate the technical names. But i made some research and gonna undo my language-mistakes . lol.

The Ethanol is a non-pure type of Alcohol... it has 96% of ethilic Alcohol, and 4% of water. That's the one from the pump.
The Alcohol ( that I was wrongly calling ethanol too ) is the Pure Alcohol that we add to the gasoline. 27% of Alcohol, and 73% of gasoline.
Your E85, I guess is 15% of gasoline and 85% of Ethanol.

If your fuel filter isn't a special one for "Flex" or E85 engines, when you add Ethanol to the Gasoline, the Alcohol and the Ethanol chemically react with eachother making some kind of dregs ( dunno if it's the right word ) that obstruct the filter and burn your fuel pump ( the one in the car ) because it generates more and more fuel pressure to compensate the obstruction on the filter.

I Guess you could understrand now. lol.

And the exaust emissions are lower in the Ethanol engines then in the gasoline engines.
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Old 05-04-2008, 08:06 AM   #18
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Well, it seems E85 is no bargain. Per the AAA, it's price, adjusted for it's energy content, is currently about US$3.93, about 9% higher than regular unleaded. See here:

http://www.fuelgaugereport.com/

Edit: Ethanol is higher here because corn is the feedstock in the US and the food industry is competing for the same product. I think Brazil has far more excess sugar cane than the US has "surplus" corn.
Also, the alcohol content of the gasoline we pump is one more variable affecting our mpg calculations. More alcohol might make your driving skills look bad.


Modified by dbrd at 9:19 AM 5/4/2008
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Old 05-05-2008, 02:55 PM   #19
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Dunno with E85, but with only Ethanol, if you don't wait till the engine is warm in the morning, the car runs a big crap. It's like if you had tied 3 loaded horse trailers to your car. With Fuel Injection, this sensation is amortized, but it's there... and when the car is warm, it runs a lot better then with gasoline... it's acceleration and so are like almos 10% better... If you try to start the car using only Ethanol in the morning, or cold days, you'll loose like 5 mins trying. So here we have what we call "Cold Start System". It's basically another 4 injectors connected to a 5 lt tank of gasoline. When you start the car, it injects vcariable amount of gasoline depending on how much ethanol you have on the tank. Even if you are running on pure gas, it injects just a little gasoline from the extra tank, to use the gasoline in there. Because the normal unloaded gas, has like a 3 month use time. If you let the gas in the tank and don't use it, it looses it's "chemical something" (lol) and becomes just some random liquid in your tank. That 4 injhectors system is what Honda developed... every Car factory has your own system.
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Old 05-06-2008, 03:34 AM   #20
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I don't see E85 in Florida. I did buy some gasoline that said it had some ethanol in it when I was in Indiana recently. I think it said 10 or 15%. Your discussion about the fuel filter getting clogged concerned me a little.
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Old 05-06-2008, 12:30 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbrd
I don't see E85 in Florida. I did buy some gasoline that said it had some ethanol in it when I was in Indiana recently. I think it said 10 or 15%. Your discussion about the fuel filter getting clogged concerned me a little.
The problem is to mix Ethanol and Alcohol, but i don't know if it's really true... what i do know is that the first "flexes" here had some fuel filter issues about getting clogged. But it was just a matter of reducing the time between changes...
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Old 05-09-2008, 09:39 AM   #22
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Forget what i've said about the ethanol mixes and filtering stuff... don't know exactely what happens, so I prefer to tell you to forget then to tell a wrong info...
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Old 05-09-2008, 09:52 AM   #23
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Does the grade of the gasoline effect the mpg of the car? I swear that it does... that or my mind is playing tricks on me.

I was using 87 and getting 28-30mpg. Once I started using higher grade I started hitting 32 more often.

?

I also need to check my tire pressure, that'll help me as well.
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Old 05-10-2008, 03:21 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by retroFIT
Does the grade of the gasoline effect the mpg of the car? I swear that it does... that or my mind is playing tricks on me.

I was using 87 and getting 28-30mpg. Once I started using higher grade I started hitting 32 more often.

?

I also need to check my tire pressure, that'll help me as well.
I don't think octane rating effects the mpg that you get. There is an additive in higher grades whose purpose is to retard ignition in high compression engines. Honda asks for regular and that's what mine gets, and it delivers 36 - 40 mpg, usually 38 in mixed city/highway driving. Mine has the manual tranny.

Tire pressure is important to fuel economy, certainly you would not want them to be below the recommended 32 psi. I run mine at 40. I think the ride is a little sharper in the back seat as a result. There may be some minor change in handling, as well, but nothing I can detect. I often carry heavy loads in my Fit, so would use 40 psi even if it did not provide better fuel mileage.
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Old 05-12-2008, 09:48 AM   #25
 
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Default Re: "Official" Fuel Economy Thread (D50boy)

I have 18,000 miles my Fit Sport, Automatic. I was very disappointed with the overall gas mileage for the first 5000 miles or so. Averaged about 28mpg overall. I have since learned some tricks to enhance mileage a little. My last two highway trips averaged 35mpg. I went from KC to Omaha, then KC to St. Louis and back. I used to get really uncomfortable cruising below 85mph. I hate tailing semis, etc. However, with the Fit, I have reduced my cruising speed to 78mph. (There is no way I can cruise at 65!) I also noticed that if you put the transmission in "paddle" mode, then use the cruise, it won't downshift at all. You will slow down some on hills though. But you will keep the rpms down. Otherwise, I have drastically cut down the jack-rabbit starts in the city. That has helped me stay over 32mpg overall now. Better, but I think this car should get 40mpg with the engine vs the weight of the car. All small cars are getting less mpg because of added weight and emissions crap. But the louder we yell the more likely the manufacturers will increase mileage.
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