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Old 07-07-2008, 12:58 PM   #111 (permalink)
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imaginary egg

Imagine a raw egg attached to the bottom of your right foot. Try not to break it as you drive!

This tries to accomplish about the same thing as a few other tips - it's just a slightly exaggerated metaphor that some may find useful:


I hope I am not posting tips that have already been put up - I did read thru - and I apologize if I missed some...

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Old 07-07-2008, 01:03 PM   #112 (permalink)
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alloy wheels: not

Alloy wheels can dress up a vehicle nicely. But some tire salesmen try to sell these expensive items as fuel savers. Some may, and some may not save any fuel at all. But just because the wheels are made of an alloy material does not necessarily mean they will be fuel savers. And since they can be quite pricey, even if there is some fuel savings it is very unlikely to offset the added cost of the new alloy wheels.
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Old 07-07-2008, 01:55 PM   #113 (permalink)
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Do not do the raw egg thing - it will cause you to accelerate too slowly for maximum overall FE.
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Old 07-07-2008, 02:16 PM   #114 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry6 View Post
Imagine a raw egg attached to the bottom of your right foot. Try not to break it as you drive!
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonr View Post
Do not do the raw egg thing - it will cause you to accelerate too slowly for maximum overall FE.
I think neither of these generalizations are completely accurate--it depends on the circumstances (conditions, type of car, etc). With a manual transmission, large throttle openings at lower RPM (short-shifting) can be beneficial, but with an automatic, you have to balance throttle opening with getting the transmission to upshift and lock up as early as possible. I think the eggshell approach can have multiple benefits:
  • Earlier shifts and converter lockup in an automatic
  • Forces the driver to change mindset--no longer competing with other traffic, leaving space ahead for coasting
  • You may simply drive slower
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Old 07-09-2008, 07:39 AM   #115 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe_Bloe View Post
...with an automatic, you have to balance throttle opening with getting the transmission to upshift and lock up as early as possible.
I'm a beginner at this, and my main technique is keeping throttle pressure on the SGII at less than 30 (flat 55 mph takes about 25). That makes for slow acceleration from a stop, but I don't know any way to figure how a faster acceleration to top gear compares in FE.

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Old 07-20-2008, 09:22 PM   #116 (permalink)
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Harry6: You are so right!! The original thought was from years ago when heavy steel wheels had equally heavy hubcaps. The AL wheels were indeed lighter and you often hear the term "unsprung weight" meaning that the lighter the wheel the more responsive it is etc.
today's steel wheels are very light and usually use plastic hubcaps or none at all. But the AL 's do look great!! and (may) actually be heavier than the steel ones??
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Old 07-23-2008, 11:14 AM   #117 (permalink)
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New here, and while the list is already long there's a lot still missing...

The idea behind the "racing line" is to find the lowest time through a corner (or set of corners), not necessarily the fastest speed in the corner or shortest distance, generally given that you're driving at the limit of adhesion (which you typically won't find if you're hypermiling).

Learn to drive so that you don't have to slow down so much in a corner - carry your speed through the corner, and perhaps in a higher gear, too, whether in the dry, the rain, or in snow.

Not all tires with the same nominal size actually have the same diameter; a 215/50-17 Falken 512 is a lot smaller than the same size Michelin HX MXM4. The difference will affect gearing, and acceleration, handling, cornering grip, etc.

Different makes and brands of the same size tire can have different weights; tires of the above noted size typically range from 23lbs to 28lbs.

Reducing the weight of wheel and tire can have a dramatic effect on handling and acceleration, and fuel economy. Reducing the unsprung weight at each corner by, say 5 lbs, will reduce the total weight of a 3,000lb car by 20lbs - so what! There's the obvious effect on the suspension, which can react faster to changes (bumps, etc), for improved handling (so you can drive faster through corners). The reduced rotational mass means that it is easier for your engine to accelerate the drive wheels - think increased area under a thurst-at-the-road cuvre: the net effect is that your car will have more torque available AT EVERY ENGINE SPEED for acceleration, when driving up a hill, or just driving a long (because there will be less load on the drivetrain).

Failing to signal a turn might hurt another driver's hypermiling. Consider if you're waiting for an approaching car before turning into traffic - so you're idling - and just before that car gets to you it turns so that it is no longer in your intended path. In some situations, if that driver had signaled their turn, you might not have needed to wait.

It seems that many people do not understand that, if they accelerate vey slowly, they may be maximizing their time in fuel inefficient 1st and 2nd gear. AND, they may selfishly be forcing the drivers behind them to do the same.

Hypermilers using a steady-throttle on rural 50mph roads may selfishly be causing cars behind them to become less fuel efficient. My 4-cyl Acura has a slippery 0.27 drag coefficient, and it moves just fine, but it's aggressive 6-speed manual transmission masks its general torque deficiency. So, when traveling behind a hypermiler who slows from say, 50mph to 45mph going up that hypothetical hill, I now downshift from 6th gear to 5th gear: that hypermiler may be helping them justify buying a fuel inefficient car, but they're NOT helping the planet.

I didn't see any comments about skipping gears, when accelerating. In the city, I used to go 1st, 2nd, 5th, unless I went 1st, 2nd, 6th. I have read on in an Acura forum that Acura does not approve of this, and suggests that drivers [seemingly pointlessly] run up through all the gears, even once you're hit cruising speed - Acura's interest is transmission wear/gear alignment or something like that.

I don’t skip as many gears as I used to because I changed the overall gearing of my car by increasing the size of my tires from 215/50-17 to 225/50-17. I did not do this to save fuel, and although the engine now runs slower in every gear, at whatever speed I'm going, the effect on gearing makes it harder for the engine to turn the car's driving wheels. The point is that unless your car has a lot of surplus torque, changing your car's gearing by increasing the diameter of your car's tires might not improve fuel economy, or it may depend on how you drive. [For those interested, I "made my car accelerate slower" so that I could use 3rd gear again, I wanted more cornering grip (but I now have slower "turn-in", and I'm paranoid about Ontario's 50-Over Stunt Driving Laws - and before you laugh recognize that people here have had their cars impounded and licenses suspended for spinning their tires pulling away from stop sign in the snow even though they had snow tires on their car!]

I didn't see any references to "lowering springs" which can make your car handle and brake better, and improve overall aerodynamics, giving either reduced fuel consumption or improved acceleration - or both. Ontario's approach is that making these type of improvements means you must be a "street racer" and warrant being pulled over and harassed. Anyhow, lowering you truck, minivan, or SUV (or car) with shorter, generally stiffer, springs - and throw in some new shock absorbers, too, while you're there - might save lives, make driving trips take less time, and save fuel.

Engine/intake/exhaust modifications don't seem to be included in this section, but making an engine more efficient might mean that you can drive in a higher gear, at a given speed. Generally, however, improving engine efficiency means using more air, which is burned with more fuel, so that may sound like a no, but if it means that you can use a car with a modified 4-cyl engine instead of the came car with it's optional V6 to haul the family around with, then, maybe....

In the past week, I've been forced out of my lane when a [presumably] hypermiler refused to safely and reasonably accelerate onto a highway. Again, they may think their saving fuel, by maximizing their time in a lower gear at 40mph in a 60mph area, but the planet isn't any better off.

Modern engines mix and burn air and fuel according to their maps, but when it's cold outside and the air is dense with higher levels of oxygen your car will burn more fuel. So while the air may be harder to move through, your car will be more powerful.

Some tires are better than others, and some should be illegal. A tire that prematurely loses its wet-weather grip (I'm talking about the continuation of the vulcanization process when tires heat and cool when driven, upon rather than from treadwear) can leave you uselessly - and dangerously - spinning your tires to get going. Just a thought, but has anyone looked at the wet-weather ratings of the Goodyear Integrity - a tire recently popular on Dodge minivans and Toyota Corollas, plus millions of other cars - on Tire Rack - Your performance experts for tires and wheels

Anyway, I've got to go, but I'll be back.
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Old 07-23-2008, 03:02 PM   #118 (permalink)
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Since the tires are the same diameter, you are using more rubber and less aluminum when you use a smaller wheel. Is that always lighter?

I do find it strange that the fad is for very low profile tires, and yet when I look at race cars, that isn't what they use.
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Old 07-27-2008, 10:33 PM   #119 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
100+ hypermiling / ecodriving tips & tactics

Feel free to use this thread to make suggestions or post additional tips.

It's a work in progress, of course, as is most of our driving.
2) Park and ride (bicycle)
If part of your commute is not biker friendly, travel to a point that is and then bike the rest of the way.

The "park and ride" concept can also be applied to carpooling and mixed private/public transit travel.

Add skateboards to that - I see a lot of being used. What other 'vehicle' fits into a backpack? LOL.

18) Lane of least resistance
In multi-lane traffic, choose the "lane of least resistance" to avoid unnecessary and unpredictable braking/changes in speed.

EG. avoid lanes where buses are starting and stopping, or cars may be braking unpredictably to turn into driveways/parking lot entrances.

Unrelated to gas economy, but still, worth noting. Try to drive in the center lane while within the city on slow-moving streets. Carjackers will invariably target people closest to the curb when stopped for red lights.

43) The most efficient way to slow down
When you *have* to slow down, here's an approximate heirarchy of methods, from best to worst.

1) coasting in neutral, engine off (ie. roll to a stop);
2) coasting in neutral, engine idling;
3) regenerative coasting (hybrid vehicles)
4) regenerative braking (hybrid vehicles)
5) coasting in "deceleration fuel cut-off" mode (in gear, above a certain engine RPM)
6) conventional friction braking (non-hybrid or hybrid)

Choosing the right method depends on traffic conditions (following vehicles) and how quickly you need to stop.

So, does this mean, Fred Flintstone's method - sticking your feet on to the road - is out? ;-)

47) Drive shoeless
Some hardcore hypermilers drive in sock or bare feet so they can modulate the accelerator to the finest degree (particularly important when "driving with load" / "target MPG driving" at cruise.

It shouldn't be that surprising. Race car drivers typically wear extremely thin-sole boots for similar reasons: for the highest level of tactile feedback from the vehicle, and to better finesse the pedals.

UNEXPECTED BENEFIT: An added benefit to driving shoeless is that it is shown that it can also keep you awake if you are on the drowsy side.

52) Encourage a pass: hug right
Drivers who travel below the normal flow of traffic should facilitate drivers approaching from behind to go past, rather than force them to slow down.

You see, it is amazing how most people speed up as soon as you as clear the way, even those who might have been previously going rather slow!!! I have watched this psychology in action so many, many times - works like clockwork. I think it does something to people when they see a free and clear path ahead. I actually love pulling over to let people go. Many a times, I have seen them being pulled over by a cop a little later! I know it's mean! LOL

Amazing how much of this, such as #56, #60, #65, #75, etc. I have been following for the past 38 years of driving, even when gas was as cheap as it is now in Venezuela.


34) Find/adopt a 'blocker' for slower freeway speeds

One solution is to find another vehicle going the speed you want to travel (large, conspicuous vehicles work particularly well) and drive either ahead of or behind it. (Note: this is not a suggestion to draft.)

Okay, one warning, though. Watch out for those rock chips kicked up by 18-wheelers. I try not to do this for a healthy windshield.

65) Parking tactics: pick the periphery
Choosing a spot in the "periphery" of a busy lot will be more efficient than navigating the rows of traffic/pedestrians to get as close as possible to the building or destination.

UNEXPECTED BENEFITS:
a. You get more exercise walking back and forth to your destination.
b. Leave your wallet in your trunk, as I do. This way, by the time you walk to the car to get your wallet, your impulse purchase desire will have disappeared.
c. My 1999 car has not ONE door dent! In most cases, you have nobody parking around you.

Also, not sure if I saw it anywhere in your list - Stopping and starting is better than idling for more than 20 seconds.

Last, but not least, fight back...bite the oil companies back...if your city has good public transit, take it! It will be definitely cheaper. I am super relaxed when I get to work after either sleeping, reading, or listening to my iPod on the train. Can you do those things while driving?

Happy savings!

Harry

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Last edited by musicollector; 07-27-2008 at 11:34 PM..
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Old 08-21-2008, 08:00 AM   #120 (permalink)
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Why!?

In my opinion, and by no means do I mean any disrespect, I think that almost the entirety of this list is BS. I drive a 1999 BMW 323i, and on the freeway, I get 30mpg, around town, 22-25. If you cannot afford the gas, DON'T BUY A CAR!!!!! The one that erks me the most is "shut off your engine if you are going to be stopped for more than a few seconds." This is an all around bad idea. Here is my reasoning:

1) The gas required for a vehicle to idle is almost none at all. You WILL NOT be at a stop light long enough for it to matter. The gas required to start your car with the engine shut off requires much more gas than sitting at idle. Just watch your tachometer next time you start your car, the needle jumps up doesn't it? Just remember simple physics, "...an object in motion tends to stay in motion, an object at rest tends to stay at rest..."

2) By starting your car, you are draining the battery. The engine will have to use more power from the alternator to replace this power, therefore increasing the auxiliary load on your engine, therefore lowering fuel economy.

3) Increased wear and tear on your engine and starter. By shutting your engine off, you are then draining your oil back into the oil pan. Thus relying on the oil left "hanging" on the parts to sufficiently lube all the moving parts on start up. This is why it is said that starting your engine is the harshest thing you can do to your engine. The increase in maintenance cost will offset the savings in fuel cost.

I apologize for the rant, and I mean no disrespect, but some of these ideas are ludicrous. You should just drive normally, and you will not cause an accident, and you will not beat your engine up.

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