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Old 03-11-2012, 07:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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New hypermiler from the UK

Hi guys,

Can I first say that this site is fab, lots of great info to really get my teeth into, I appreciate that most of what I'm asking has probably been answered a thousand times before... I only wish the UK had such a busy hypermiling scene !

I do around 400 miles per week, so need to be fuel efficient, with diesel around £1.50 a litre ($2.35 ish) it's costing a pretty penny.

I used to have a diesel fiat grande punto, which was good for 55 MPG (Imp) with a lead foot.
I needed a bigger car so have now bought a Ford Focus C-Max 1.6 TDCi, it's a quite big SUV, now it doesn't have an instant MPG trip computer, so have ordered the Ultra-Gauge, so hopefully when that arrives it should help somewhat.

I've been actively reading up about hypermiling on this and other sites for a while now, and must admit I'm being put off slightly about buying a diesel, as it seems that the big gains can be had with petrol, and that a lot of techniques don't work so well on diesels. I've read a few threads on this matter, but a lot of posts are written in such technical terms, a newb like me struggles to understand lol

I understand P&G is more suited to petrols, and as my car is fitted with a DPF, I don't like this idea as it would most probably clog it up, does anyone have any suggestions.
At the moment I'm just taking things steady, switching the engine off when I go down big hills etc.

Also my recommended tyre pressure is 33PSI all round, and the max on the tyre wall is 44PSI, what would you go to and consider to be safe still, baring in mind the car with have a full family in it at times !

My book average figures are 57MPG, when the Ultra-Gauge arrives I hope to beat this. Anyone else got any advise ?

Thanks,
Paul.

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Old 03-11-2012, 07:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome!!
THere are several tire threads.
Generally everyone is runing 39psi or more.
I have run 43psi on my Infiniti Q45 for several yrs. I have no problem w/ the ride or wear.
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ECO MODS PERFORMED:
First: ScangaugeII
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...eii-23306.html

Second: Grille Block
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...e-10912-2.html

Third: Full underbelly pan
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...q45-11402.html

Fourth: rear skirts and 30.4mpg on trip!
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...tml#post247938
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Welcome! Ditto to Mcrew's psi advice. Maybe you could inform use as generally; how much rural, urban, suburban, etc.. is your driving?

Are you willing to use routes that may be slightly longer to stay away from multiple red lights, and courses that keep your average cruising speed lower, and fairly constant?

The beauty is that the most gains don't have to be big body mods. The area between
your ears, is really where you can have the greatest effect. Smoothness, finesse, behind the wheel is key.

Grille blocks, and partial outer mirror size reduction, a front airdam; might be fun projects
to digest one at a time, without changing the veh. drastically, or weirding out the family!

Pick a spot to dig in at your comfort level.

Hope to read in other sections, updates of progress as you go along.

Keep asking questions, and don't be afraid to dig into older pages.

The only dumb question one can ask, is if that question has already been addressed
in older threads.

Again; welcome!
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:26 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Hi, Paul, and welcome to EM

Your 1.6 TDCi is actually the same engine as in my Peugeot and Euromodder's Volvo. I'm getting some great numbers using PNG (Pulse, then Glide in Neutral, with the engine on) and haven't noticed any engine trouble (I don't have a DPF though). Euro has problems with his, but they're not directly related to hypermiling or ecomodding, iirc.

Here are a few small things you can do:
  1. Adjust the nut behind the wheel! Don't go faster than you need to, don't accelerate when the next light has just turned red, etc.
  2. Up tyre pressure to 40psi (MAX - 10%) and see how that works. Once you get used to it, you might pump up to 44psi for longer trips and/or when alone.
  3. Partially block the grille. Block the rest during the colder months. You might also block the upper grille and make the lower grille block openable. If you have an intercooler, then you don't want to block that part. Turbodiesels are most efficient when the engine is hot and the intake air cold. Insulating the engine helps, too.
  4. If you have a place to plug in, then install a block heater. DEFA 412512 is the heater for the 1.6 TDCi/HDi, it works wonders year-round
  5. Don't kill your engine until the turbo cools off. I EOC only when I expect to coast at least 600-800m, or when coasting to a long red light, but I let it idle in neutral for 3-5 seconds after pulsing.
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Old 03-12-2012, 12:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Welcome to ecomodder, Paul.
Quote:
Originally Posted by uksoundz View Post
I only wish the UK had such a busy hypermiling scene !
LOL, the UK is where I started hypermiling
Well, at least its where the drive slower part showed considerable benefit. So I kept driving slower.

Those 70 mph/112kph were certainly beneficial compared to our 75 mph /120 kph.
Driving slower will improve things further. Try 100 kph / 62 mph.

Quote:
I needed a bigger car so have now bought a Ford Focus C-Max 1.6 TDCi, it's a quite big SUV
Which means slowing down on the motorway will help a lot, as it has a lot of frontal area and not-so-good drag coefficient (Cd).

If you do lots of city / variable speed driving, reducing weight will help - while it hardly helps on the motorway.
Ditch all car equipment you don't really need, and all assorted junk in the trunk (and anywhere else in the car).
MPVs often have a gazillion of storage spaces - clean 'm out.

What year is it ?

Quote:
now it doesn't have an instant MPG trip computer, so have ordered the Ultra-Gauge, so hopefully when that arrives it should help somewhat.
It's a good indicator, but if its anything like the ScanGauge, you'll probably find it gets calibrated to your driving style
So when your driving style is altered, the gauge will also be off a bit.

Many of us diesel dorks have the SG calibrated to 3/4 the displacement, i.e. only 1.2L instead of 1.6L - I had to dial in far too much compensating bias @ 1.6L .
When calibrating, correct by only half the difference in total fuel used.
(when the total fuel consumption is 2 L off, correct using +/- only 1 liter)

Quote:
I'm being put off slightly about buying a diesel, as it seems that the big gains can be had with petrol, and that a lot of techniques don't work so well on diesels.
That's mainly because diesels are already more efficient.


Quote:
I understand P&G is more suited to petrols, and as my car is fitted with a DPF, I don't like this idea as it would most probably clog it up
Idling tends to produce more soot, and so does a heavy load.

Quote:
At the moment I'm just taking things steady, switching the engine off when I go down big hills etc.
That's already pretty hardcore hypermiling.

What do you call big hills ?

If they're long shallow slopes, you can control speed with the aerodynamic drag and even shut the engine off (though I idle in neutral).
My V50 needs about 5% gradient to keep around 62mph.

If the grade is too steep for aero drag, keep the engine running and stay in (top) gear - the fuel flow will be cut off anyway in these conditions
(engine braking or DFCO as it's called here) .

I always keep the engine running though - steering is too hard w/o power steering, and power braking is reduced too much / too quickly to be safe for my liking.

Coasting in Neutral has become my main way of slowing down.
Engine braking is next, brakes are only used when the situation is unpredictable, or to come to a full stop
(coasting engine-on becomes a lot less efficient the last 5-10 mph)


Quote:
Also my recommended tyre pressure is 33PSI all round, and the max on the tyre wall is 44PSI, what would you go to and consider to be safe still, baring in mind the car with have a full family in it at times !
@ 33psi you're running on flat tyres.

I'm running 51 psi (max. sidewall pressure on my Michelin Energy Savers) which is on the edge of being bouncy when running near-empty.
I won't go above sidewall max. pressure.

33 psi is what Volvo (then part of Ford) recommended on my lighter V50.
44 psi is only 3 bar, and the Cmax is a heavy creature, so you can probably run 44 psi without issue.
The ride will get noticeably harder, but it shouldn't get harsh & bouncy.
Back off the pressure if it does bounce, that means the suspension can't cope.

Fully loaded, the car will behave better with less negative effect due to the higher tyre pressure.

Quote:
My book average figures are 57MPG, when the Ultra-Gauge arrives I hope to beat this.
That's 47 mpg US, or 5 L/100km - exactly what my V50 with the same engine is rated for, so you'll likely have better gearing / mapping.

I can get 65 mpg Imp though


The grille lets in too much air - far more than the 1.6D needs - so you can close off at least the top grille, and likely part of the lower grille.
The intercooler and A/C cooler will need some air though.
It speeds up engine warm-up a bit when hypermiling (using less fuel means it takes longer to warm up) and improves the aerodynamics (air going through the engine bay is a drag).
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Old 03-12-2012, 03:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Well thanks for all the replies, all noted and very informative.

I do a 60 miles round trip which is around 50% motorway/highway and 30% main roads, 20% minor roads, hardly any traffic lights and a pretty straight run.

Although I've been engine off coasting a bit, I find it a little too hardcore at the moment, roughly how much fuel do you use when coasting in neutral ?

My Ultra-Gauge arrives on Wednesday according to FedEx, can't wait !
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:26 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uksoundz View Post
Although I've been engine off coasting a bit, I find it a little too hardcore at the moment, roughly how much fuel do you use when coasting in neutral ?
Obviously that depends on the speed you're coasting at, but with a warm engine, you'd be looking at anything from 0.5L/100km (@ 100kph - or 0.5L /h at idle) to 1L/100km around 40-50 kph, and more as you slow down further.

Extending the glide is fine with the engine off, the further you roll, the more efficient it is.

But with the engine on, coasting becomes less and less efficient as you slow down. As it's also more of a nuisance to other drivers when you go painstakingly slow, I tend not to coast much below 30kph / 20mph - unless in 30mph zones.
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Old 03-13-2012, 05:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks, note to self, don't try an engine off coast on the way home at night, because my lights go off ! lol
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Old 03-14-2012, 05:09 AM   #9 (permalink)
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What you need is a kill switch for your engine. That way you won't have to turn the key in the ignition, which can be worth more than just saving the wear&tear. In my Pug, offing the engine with the key turns off many things - power steering, ECU, radio, etc. (the lights are programed to stay on for 15 seconds) - but using the kill switch keeps them all on, which is much safer.

The switch itself interrupts the crank position sensor's signal (you could also try the camshaft position sensor), telling the ECU to stop the engine.

As for brake assist, there is enough vacuum in the lines for 2-3 full stops (I still had vacuum after a 6km glide). You can increase that by adding a 1-3 liter reservoir to your vacuum lines. There is a good thread here on how to make one out of PVC pipe. You could also replace your vacuum pump with an electric one, which would also reduce load on the engine (electric pump would turn on only when needed, not like the one hanging on the engine), but this isn't the cheapest of options.

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e·co·mod·ding: the art of turning vehicles into what they should be

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