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Old 12-12-2012, 07:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Newbie from DFW

Howdy. Newbie from DFW, north Texas area here.
Used to do a lot of street legal drag racing many moons ago. Also owned and operated a chassis shop. Got busy in other business and haven't done anything with cars in about 10 years.

I am a science teacher now and have a little interest in learning about increasing efficiency and looking at alternative fuels/forms of transportation.

I currently own a 2006 PT Cruiser Limited turbo, 2007 Jetta 2.5, 2004 GMC 2500HD(6.0 liter), and 2002 Hyundai Accent.

I can see there is quite a bit of information here so the learning curve is pretty steep. I am currently debating the possibility of building my own hybrid. I probably won't be posting very much until I spend some time reading/learning.

Looking forward to finding out what it is that I don't know.

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Old 12-12-2012, 07:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
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2004 CTD - '04 DODGE RAM 2500 SLT
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As a Dallas native, welcome. Moved away a few years ago and miss some of the techs and shops where I knew I could find good work and great advice.

What has worked well for me is:

1] Combine all trips. The DHS sez 90% of us go to 90% of the same places 90% of the time. I used MAPQUEST "Best Order Routing" to analyze my usual errands. It is one thing to know to go to the farthest place first (via freeway if possible for a long easy warmup), but it is another to find right-turn only routing from thereon (as does FED-EX and UPS). The effort is worth it.

2] Now, having eliminated short trips and cold starts, the challenge is to drive the remaining miles as well as possible. I decided that changing my habits was crucial as I wanted things to be habitual. That is, I would use whatever methods adapted on a constant basis. It isn't enough to know how to do EOC or P&G, but that one must make them part of the routine of driving.

I've been driving for economy for 40-years, but that didn't mean that there wasn't room for improvement. Just beating EPA estimates is not hard (but it was enough for me for many years).

I highly recommend extensive records. The fuel log here is good to use. I record in a journal kept in the console. All gallons, and all miles. Any effort expended is all about changes to the baseline mpg: the percentage change.

Finally, it is worth every effort to mechanically baseline the vehicle. Don't assume that alignment or brake drag or steering wander, etc, is within boundaries, Spend a little to find out. Little things like posture, mirror adjustment, clean glass all add up.

FE is all about details. Many, if not most, are just a matter of making some lists (scheduled maintenance as a beginning) and checking things off as part of those records.

A big metro area presents challenges. Time and distance don't always equate as stress plays a big role in getting from Point A to Point B. The relaxed driver who has to give the least input to the vehicle to maintain best momentum is miles ahead.

Good luck.

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Runum (12-12-2012)
Old 12-12-2012, 08:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you for the tips slowmover. I don't do much big city driving, mainly highway, outside of the gridlock.

Love spending time in Port Aransas too.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
Team Metro
Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

MPGiata - '90 Mazda Miata
90 day: 52.71 mpg (US)

Even Fancier Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
90 day: 70.75 mpg (US)

Appliance car - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage ES (base)
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Welcome to the forum, Runum.
Project MPGiata! Mods for getting 50+ MPG from a 1990 Miata
Honda mods: Ecomodding my $800 Honda Fit 5-speed beater
Mitsu mods: 70 MPG in my ecomodded, dirt cheap, 3-cylinder Mirage.
Ecodriving test: Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown

has launched a forum for the efficient new Mitsubishi Mirage
www.MetroMPG.com - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners
www.ForkenSwift.com - electric car conversion on a beer budget
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:34 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The Q Sold - '02 Infiniti Q45 Sport
90 day: 23.08 mpg (US)

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Welcome from a former Dallasite/OakCliffer !!!

Air up the tires!!!
ANd enjoy the info......almost as good as a PhD!
(these guys are SMART!!)
MetroMPG: "Get the MPG gauge - it turns driving into a fuel & money saving game."

First: ScangaugeII

Second: Grille Block

Third: Full underbelly pan

Fourth: rear skirts and 30.4mpg on trip!
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks Metro and Mcrews.

I have actually been reading about your bellypan install and results. Good stuff.

Last edited by Runum; 12-12-2012 at 10:57 PM..
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