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Old 06-10-2010, 07:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 3

Saturn III - '95 Saturn SL1
90 day: 38.93 mpg (US)
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Hello from Berkeley!

I found ecomodder.com after PowerHaus930's introduction post came up on Google. I have a 95 Saturn SL1 5-speed as well. I love Saturns very much (this is my third) and I've always loved the mileage they get. I had no idea whatsoever what they were capable of until I found ecomodder.com.

I was getting between 29-34 MPG out of my Saturn, depending on the kind of driving I was doing before. Since I found ecomodder.com and did the hypermiling techniques I felt comfortable doing (namely getting into high gear quickly, driving with load, going slower on the freeway, and using my brakes less) I got 39 MPG on my last tank. That is the highest mileage I ever got! Thanks guys! You saved me $6 of gas in two weeks!

I do have a couple of questions to get started:

Is there a how-to on how to install the HAI for a Saturn? I'd like to have a go at that and report back, since I read Saturns respond well to it.

Is coasting in neutral that much better than coasting in, say, 5th gear? It's against the law to coast in neutral here in California. Does it make that much difference?

What is the down side of increasing the air pressure in my tires? Can I cause them to blow out? My tires say max PSI is 30 lbs/sq-in for the front and 28 for the back. Is it dangerous to exceed this?

I'm happy to find such a conscious and friendly community. Hope I can save some gas!

Carl

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Old 06-10-2010, 08:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Live in Tucson AZ, work and car now in Detroit
Posts: 200

Protege - '97 Mazda Protege DX
90 day: 46.42 mpg (US)
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Welcome,

Lots of discussions here about tire air pressure. An interesting one just a couple of days ago so filter on "air" and the past week. The consensus is normally go to maximum that is "printed/stamped" into the tire. The data on the door or owners manual is what Saturn wants you to run. The data on the tire is the maximum that the tire manufactor recommends.
The air that comes into the filter box is normally from down low near the bumper/tire well somewhere. It is trying to get cold air. Just unhooking that hose from the box will get you air from inside the engine compartment. That is warmer then "outside" air and might be a good place to start.
Read up on "grill blocks" as well. It is another "low hanging fruit" that helps when you are not in the middle of the desert.
Also look in the garage for other Saturn owners and then search out their modifications/information.
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Old 06-10-2010, 08:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Detroit
Posts: 59

Eggy - '99 Saturn SL2
90 day: 43.7 mpg (US)
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Welcome!

I"m fairly new here myself. I have a 99 SL2 automatic. I'll try to answer most of your questions.

Here is my HAI thread with some pictures. There isn't an official "howto" but if you're handy, you can make things up as you go.

HAI Thread


You can check out my gas log to see what I have done. Its not much ... inflate tires, smooth hub caps, HAI ... planning on belly pan.

Tires ... close to max pressure on sidewall helps a little but hard to quantify. My fronts are 35/35 max and rears are 35/44 max. The tires are rated to run safely up to the sidewall pressure.


Coroplast hub caps here


I'm sure coasting in neutral is probably illegal in all 50 states. Can't help you here b/c I don't know much about manual trannies but try not to get a ticket.
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Old 06-10-2010, 08:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Detroit
Posts: 59

Eggy - '99 Saturn SL2
90 day: 43.7 mpg (US)
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That HAI thread is somewhat old. I switched out the PVC piping to the stiff dryer aluminum duct using the same concept. You can always use the aluminum downspout gutters. Try to keep at least a 1.5" diameter, but 3" diameter piping is better b/c you're not restricting anything at wide open throttle. Also, if you put a HAI, you really want a scan gauge, odbII scanner with live data, or remote thermometer to help tell you what the incoming temperature is.
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Old 06-10-2010, 10:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
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29-34 up to 39 is a nice bump. Fun, isn't it?

Welcome to the forum!
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Project MPGiata! Mods for getting 50+ MPG from a 1990 Miata
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Ecodriving test: Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown



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Old 06-11-2010, 12:56 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 3

Saturn III - '95 Saturn SL1
90 day: 38.93 mpg (US)
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It sure is a nice bump up. Saved me about 10 bucks in two weeks! I wonder how good I can get it without doing serious structural work to the car. Hypermiling is kind of a zen way to drive too... you start noticing all the other drivers stressing out and not getting to their destinations much faster than you do.

Thanks for the welcome.

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