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-   -   Hello Everyone (student with Mustang LX 2.3L 14-18 mpg looking for help) (https://ecomodder.com/forum/showthread.php/hello-everyone-student-mustang-lx-2-3l-14-a-21340.html)

Mustangwill 04-07-2012 12:46 AM

Hello Everyone (student with Mustang LX 2.3L 14-18 mpg looking for help)
 
My name is William and I am a college student. I drive a 1993 Mustang LX 2.3L and right about now I get between 14-18 mpg on my daily commute to college and to work.

I am looking for anyway to get extra money and I figured I might as well start with my car. If anyone can tell me how to go about this, I would really appreciate it.

ecomodded 04-07-2012 04:17 AM

I think you will see the best gains ever if you sell the car. Best advice I could give you really, but i will suggest you buy new spark plugs a air filter , distributor cap and rotor. Doing those few things could help large with the poor mileage.

nemo 04-07-2012 08:08 AM

William, glad to have you here. The least expensive thing you can do is to change your driving style. Take a look at 100+ Hypermiling Tips, if you haven't done so. Tell us about you car and commune. How many mile on your car? Well maintained? Stock? Auto or manual? What is the commute like city highway or combination? Do you log your fuel mileage?

If you are looking to cut costs, can you carpool, ride a bike or take a bus? Is replacing the car an option? You could get a car that would get double the mileage. Keep us posted on your results.

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 09:19 AM

There is a guy on here that made some changes to his Mustang convertible and posted near 40 mpg ( I think, don't quote me ). And that is with an automatic transmission.

The thing you need to do now is a compression check and a leakdown test. You are getting the kind of mpg a 5.0 would get without the fun, and a stock 5.0 with the right gearing and driven easy can get mid 20s or better ( manual transmission ).

If the engine passes the tests, do a full tune up and don't forget the timing belt and O2 sensor. Put a fresh catalytic convertor on too, if it's clogged up, engine can't breathe.

After that, get an electronic gauge that is compatible with your electronics ( I believe the Ultragauge is compatible, or an MPGuino ) and learn to drive by that. Consider it a game on your commute and make it fun.

deathtrain 04-07-2012 12:26 PM

don't forget to clean the EGR.

Frank Lee 04-07-2012 07:28 PM

14 to 18? That car is easily capable of double that. It has problems. Fix them. Then work on your driving style. And if you're anything like the kids in my town (probably not since you're in school!) no, it really isn't necessary to put on 200 miles/day going up and down main street. To them I say get a bike and a hobby.

jtbo 04-07-2012 08:23 PM

Also that easily forgotten thing, brake binding, easily can cause a lot of increasing to fuel consumption.

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 08:37 PM

Wait! I just thought about this! ( Brain was so slow )

Motorize your bicycle! They have electric, 2 stroke gas and 4 stroke gas conversion kits.

http://www.youtube.com/user/SaferWho...?v=qIPpUv3s_4g

Hey Frank, you have an electric bike, right?

Ryland 04-07-2012 08:56 PM

Yes, of course find alternatives to driving your car more then you have to, now lets assume that you bought it because you want to keep it, so working with what you have you should first fix whatever is wrong that is getting you lousy mileage! trying to make improvements on something that is broken is hard, if you can't find anything broken, or don't think that anything is not working correctly then are their any bad modifications that have been done? exhaust that is sized for a 5L engine for example, engine that's chipped to put out more power, in other words "race" modifications.
As part of fixing the broken stuff, do a tune up, make sure your rear end gear oil is fresh, synthetic should help too, same with the transmission and engine.
After that, start making improvements, your car is 19 years old, but just because a product claims to increase HP and mileage doesn't always mean that is the case.

Frank Lee 04-07-2012 09:01 PM

Quote:

Hey Frank, you have an electric bike, right?
Yes I do and because we had such a mild winter there wasn't much downtime for scootering at all! :thumbup:

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 09:38 PM

Don't know if the claims are true, but over 100 mpg should be easy with 50-80cc's and geared properly. Take a look here 99cc PREDATOR FUEL ECONOMY ? - Motorized Bicycle: Engine Kit Forum

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 10:36 PM

Here's an 80cc job; 2 stroke http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOc-C...eature=related

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 10:42 PM

Here's a 4 stroker http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0-FctafAVM

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 10:49 PM

Here's an electric conversion http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngxs6...eature=related

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 10:53 PM

No diesel or alternate fuel kit. Hmmmmm. Veddy disappointing.

Frank Lee 04-07-2012 10:54 PM

When I was a student, even while working it seemed the college was able to absorb all the money and I had little. He may not be in a position to go buy anything costly. If he likes tinkering he might be able to fix up an old moped/scooter/little motorcycle, or put an engine on a bike, within a budget.

We don't have any info about the routes he takes... could an ordinary bicycle do it? Could any two-wheeler do it? Busses? Or stuck with a car? Any opportunities for ride sharing? Dumpster diving?

cleanspeed1 04-07-2012 11:03 PM

Those Chinese kits are pretty cheap, probably less money than completely tuning up the Mustang. But like you said Frank, don't know how long the commute is.

Hey kid, how many miles do you travel everyday and what is the terrain like?

Mustangwill 04-08-2012 03:13 AM

Sorry its taken so long to get back to you guys. I had work today and I work late hours. Okay, lets start with my commute to school: From my driveway to the my campus then back (without stopping anywhere else) is sixty-two miles round trip. I usually take the interstate, put the mph at 75, and put on the cruise control. There are some hills and my cruise control speeds up/slows down to compensate. If I work on my school days, I can just stop on my way home (its on the same route I take to school).

Now, for my car condition. Its been abused, no doubt about it. Before I got it, the car was t-boned on the passenger side, repaired (not very well, mind you), and after a few years, I got it. When I got it, i was thirteen (I'm twenty now) and the first thing I did was change the oil, oil filter, and air filter. The oil had been really thick and sludge-like, and the air filter had small twigs and debris in it. Since then, I change the oil every 3,000 miles (give or take a few miles), and I've replaced A LOT of parts on it. I've replaced practically every part (I know I haven't but it feels like it) in the engine, new exhaust and catalyatic(sp?) converter, and even the windsheild. Transmission is automatic, and I haven't really messed with it other than the rear main seal. But, in November I was in my first wreck with it when I merged into the fast lane on the interstate and didn't realize a truck was at my rear quarter panel. So my driver side rear quarter panel is crushed and I'm currently waiting on getting a little extra money so I can replace it. It's still driveable (obviously) and, to answer the first poster to this thread, I do NOT want to replace this car, because it was a gift from my father and I love this car.

nemo 04-08-2012 09:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mustangwill (Post 298998)
I usually take the interstate, put the mph at 75, and put on the cruise control. There are some hills and my cruise control speeds up/slows down to compensate.

First slow down.

Tip #40
Quote:

40) Reduce speed

Aerodynamic drag increases exponentially with speed, so reduce highway cruising speed as much as practical and safe.

Generally, a vehicle's most efficient speed is just after its highest gear has engaged.

See the Ecomodder Blog for more information on tracking fuel consumption.

Tips # 42 and 43
Quote:

42) Cruise control - when to use it

Set the cruise control if you're the type of driver whose speed creeps up higher and higher the longer you're on the road, or if you have difficulty holding a steady speed (it wanders up and down).

But realize that cruise control is just a band aid for those behaviours. Generally it's less efficient than constant throttle driving, and much less efficient than "driving with load" / "target driving".



43) Cruise control - when not to use it

Only use cruise control on flat roads. On hilly roads, cruise responds to changes in grade - by feeding in more throttle on the uphill and releasing on the descent - in the exact opposite way an efficient driver would.

You mentioned it had been t-boned. Does the car have abnormal tire wear? If so, has the car ever been checked to see if all four wheels are in alignment?

cleanspeed1 04-08-2012 09:22 AM

OK, let's see..........You drive too fast, aerodynamics not too good because of the damage, trip is 31 miles one way, automatic and a 2.3 so it's kinda pokey. Student and money is tight. Don't want to get rid of car, like car.

Alright, here we go: driving 75 mph on the cruise control is killing your mpg. You have to slow down. Regardless of what you replaced, you don't know the condition of the engine on the inside. If the engine has low compression ( and very well can since it was abused ) you are pissing fuel out the pipe. Is the ignition timing ok? Are the injectors spraying properly ( lack of fuel filter changes and carbon fouling mess the spray patterns up and bam! fuel economy takes a dump ).

Replacing the car: how about this. Make a decision about what you want to live with. How about keep the Mustang, but get it off the road and fix it up properly and get something else that gets much better fuel economy that you don't have put so much time and money into? You live in a warm region and there are plenty of other cars that get better mpg by design than your Mustang, use that as your daily. You drive a lot, and the distances are pretty decent. If you were driving an old Civic, Corolla, Sentra, Saturn, even an Escort, you will be starting at low to mid 30s in the mpg and able to save a little money.

This is just looking at things from a strictly business view with no sentimentality. You have to drive.

On the other hand, if you want to continue to drive Mustang everyday, how much is it going to cost to get her up to proper working condition so that it doesn't take all your money?

Gealii 04-08-2012 09:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cleanspeed1 (Post 298952)
Don't know if the claims are true, but over 100 mpg should be easy with 50-80cc's and geared properly. Take a look here 99cc PREDATOR FUEL ECONOMY ? - Motorized Bicycle: Engine Kit Forum

the claims are true on those my buddy has a 80cc motor and goes about 75 miles to the tank with a 1/2 gallon tank. ive seen these go anywere from 25-50mph

jakobnev 04-08-2012 11:42 AM

Quote:

62 miles per day.
Quote:

Must have precious.
I'd suggest you mod it so that you can sleep in it.

ps2fixer 04-08-2012 01:32 PM

14-18 with a tiny engine in a mustang....

My friend claims low 20s with his 94 camaro with a V8...

Anyway, according to Fuel Economy of the 1993 Ford Mustang you should get 20+ mpg easy. I'm going to take a stab that your tires are low and your engine needs a tune up (plugs, wires, cap, rotor).

Personally, I would look for another car with a better mpg base line. Since the car has been in a couple wrecks, I assume your not after the looks of a sports car. A non-mustang 2.3L performs just as well, I'm sure there is something out there to meet your tastes. Besides that, it looks like it is ending up being a money sink if you have in fact changed a lot of parts under the hood in only 7 years of driving it. My Toyota Camry with 303k miles I have drove for 2 years and only thing I did to that was timing belt (from oil leak), oil seals in front of engine, and is currently down due to the rear brake line rusting out.

Another thing to point out, do you have any idea how much money you would save if you got 30mpg vs say 15mpg per year? Going off your numbers 62 miles a day, 5 days a week, it would be just over 16k miles per year and $4300 at 15mpg or $2150 at 30mpg. In just one year you could pay off a cheap 30mpg car in fuel savings alone before any mods! Keep the mustang and fix it up while your daily driver saves you money :).

Mustangwill 04-08-2012 02:42 PM

The car has new wheels, but I haven't had a chance ( or the money ) to go get them aligned. Would that affect the mpg that much? Because when I going down a straight-a-way and I take my hands off the steering wheel, it pulls to the right pretty aggressively. What do you think would be a good speed to go on the interstate? The speed limit is 70. Timing and injectors: I have no idea how to check that. My parents are car mechanics so they do all my car work. I personally know very little about mechanics- its not my forte.

I have actually been in the process of parking the old Mustang and getting a motorcycle. I have been studying my book to take the exam, but like I said, I work late hours and while you have your learners for a motorcycle, you can't drive at night. So I don't know how that is going to work. Money is tight right now, and throw in the fact I have some debt I am trying to pay off, I don't have much extra money. To replace the quarter panels on both sides I have found a website that will save me both driver and passenger for $100 each before taxes, so when I get those, the aerodynamics will be improving expentionally. I want to get a rebuild kit for the engine ($371) but I am wondering if getting a brand new block and starting over would be the better idea.

And jobnev, I do from time to time sleep in it. I'll take naps in between classes or before work in it. Its not all that bad, actually. I sleep rather well in the stock seats.

nemo 04-08-2012 03:49 PM

I don't think one thing is the cause of the poor mileage but many. The reason I mentioned the alignment was you had a side impact and the car was not repaired well. As for the effect of misalignment think of a shopping car with the wheel stuck at an angle. Harder to push than when working correctly. Push it and it slows to a stop more quickly.

Pulling to one side is not always alignment it can also be a brake or tire problem. You said your parents are mechanics have you mentioned the pulling and poor mileage to them?

Try slowing down by 5 MPH and check your mileage and then by 10 and recheck it. Most likely the best mileage would be in the 45 to 50 MPH range (my guess) but way to slow for the interstate. This is why there are post recommending instantaneous MPG gauges so you know exactly where your best economy is and were it is best near highway speed.

Check the tire pressure, slow down a little, start a fuel log and find out why its pulling to one side. Make a plan. :)

cleanspeed1 04-08-2012 04:03 PM

If the car is out of line, it will affect the gas mileage because the friction has increased quite a bit. If it pulls aggressively, then you need to make sure that after the accident that the unibody didn't get tweaked.

If the motorcycle is under a certain CC range, you shouldn't need a license. Every state is different, so check the laws. A bike in the 125-250cc range will be more than enough for commuting, and even have enough power to go 2 up.

Sounds like you want to keep driving the old girl. There are some places that specialise in the Lima based 4 cylinder and complete 2.3s are a dime a dozen since no one except circle trackers and eccentrics play with them these days. Esslinger is probably the best known, and there are a few people online that like them.

Find a roller cam motor out of a Ranger and rebuild it stone stock. Or if you find a low mileage unit out a wreck, just put it in as is. Just make sure that all the cylinders are sealing properly. If mom and dad work on cars, it shouldn't be much of a problem.

And learn how to work on your stuff.

ps2fixer 04-08-2012 05:51 PM

Check my fuel log, the first 2 tanks where on the highway 65-70mph with bad struts, very bad alignment, to go straight I had to turn the wheel a 1/4 turn. 230k miles and was not taken care of. The 3rd tank is after the repairs, 2 new tires in the front and going 55-60 on back roads to work. the tanks hitting around 42+ are since I put in a grill block. Little things add up fast :).

Frank Lee 04-08-2012 09:26 PM

I think I see the problems: you have to go at least 105 mph to get the best fuel economy.

It is normal for the steering wheel to practically rip itself out of your hands. On the side in the direction of the pull, you need to completely flatten the tires, mess with the tie rods ends to change the toe, and figure out a way to make the brake stick even harder. Perhaps engaging the parking brake a pawl or two would help.

Third, you are not changing the oil often enough. I think changing it weekly is necessary.

cleanspeed1 04-08-2012 09:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Frank Lee (Post 299126)
I think I see the problems: you have to go at least 105 mph to get the best fuel economy.

It is normal for the steering wheel to practically rip itself out of your hands. On the side in the direction of the pull, you need to completely flatten the tires, mess with the tie rods ends to change the toe, and figure out a way to make the brake stick even harder. Perhaps engaging the parking brake a pawl or two would help.

Third, you are not changing the oil often enough. I think changing it weekly is necessary.

You must be in a mood, Frank.:p

GRU 04-08-2012 11:17 PM

if your parents work on the car they should able to tell if there are big issues with it. hopefuly everything is ok with the car and if so i would suggest going slightly under the speed limit. Drive 65 in a 70 or try to see another route you can take that doesn't add more miles to your comute and has a lower speed limit, best would be around 40mph

GRU 04-08-2012 11:19 PM

p.s. don't mind Frank ;)

MetroMPG 04-09-2012 10:48 AM

Get off the freeway! Find a secondary route that lets you slow the heck down. Relax, enjoy the drive and the extra $ in your pocket.

MetroMPG 04-09-2012 10:49 AM

Oh - and add your car to the garage and start tracking fuel consumption closely. If you don't measure it, you can't manage it.

Mustangwill 04-09-2012 11:12 PM

I have slowed down to running between 60-65 mph on the interstate and so far, I can tell a little bit of a change in the mileage. I'm just under half a tank and so far I have gone over 150 miles on this tank.

I do have a question though. When I fill up, I usually go to Kroger and recently I have been putting the Kroger Additech in with my fuel. I haven't really noticed a change since I started putting it in. Am I just spending needless money?

Frank Lee 04-09-2012 11:15 PM

You're a student. The search function will answer your questions and then some.

cleanspeed1 04-09-2012 11:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Frank Lee (Post 299390)
You're a student. The search function will answer your questions and then some.

Oh, behave!:p

Frank Lee 04-10-2012 12:37 AM

This IS my good behavior! :eek:

I mean, come on. Supposedly we have a student and a family with mechanics in it, and he's doing WHAT? and he's asking WHAT?

ps2fixer 04-10-2012 01:17 AM

I do get Franks point, but he is also new to the site, you never know if they have ever been on a forum before or not, or are even aware of the search feature. Either way the OP knows there is a seach feature :).

To answer the question, most fuel aditives do so little it isn't measureable. Only thing I can think of that does not apply are fuel injector cleaners. Fuel Stabilizers might work as well but that isn't for MPG.

Frank Lee 04-10-2012 01:19 AM

Yes it is better to ask the questions than not... but the advice is still good.

Mustangwill 04-10-2012 03:24 PM

Once a month, I put in some Lucas Fuel Injector Cleaner. I always notice a little bit of a difference when I do that.


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