Beating the EPA - The Why’s and How to Hypermile

Discussion in 'Articles' started by xcel, Jul 24, 2006.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Hi Mitlynch:

    ___Two reasons. Price and the amount of power you could pull from a panel would be almost miniscule by comparison to what is needed to bring her SoC back to full with a panel that could fit on top of the car. There are many Prius II and some FEH PHEV conversions but I have not read of a PHEV conversion for an RXh yet …

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne
     
  2. whitevette

    whitevette Member

    Beating the EPA ?

    Hello, Wayne !
    I've been here (off and on) reading the comments...and noting one huge MPG parameter which no one knows to address. All seem to recognize the importance of tire pressure, hot vs. cold engine temp., oil viscosity, driving cycles, terrain, driver temperament ... and on and on.

    The parameter not addressed? I almost hesitate to bring it up ... due to its "volatile" nature and its subtle but direct effect on FE. This parameter is gasoline quality.

    Do you know exactly what it is you are putting in your gas tank when you refuel? I didn't...until I started an investigation into the origin of the "oily" smell of pump gas! I first noticed the smell ... faint at first ... in the early '70s ( about the time of the Arab Oil Embargo...remember?). Long story short - I developed a technique for separating the unknown halves ( volatile / non-volatile ) of this gasoline. Assuming gasoline was a derivative of crude oil, and crude oil is not a fuel, I questioned "What makes the higher distillate of this 'oil' into a fuel (gasoline)?"

    Another long story short ... I found pump gas is composed of one part gasoline (the volatile part) and one part non-gasoline (the non-volatile part); this mixture separation is not apparent without physically "taking the fuel apart" ... as I did. The numbers were / are dramatic! What the numbers say is : Pump gas is one part diesel fuel and one part gasoline. How do I know it is diesel (and its components)? I did the only thing I know how to do in my crude (?) analysis...burn some of this "residue"! After managing to light a test sample, I noticed a sooty cloud given off...and, catching a whiff of this cloud,I detected the aroma of a diesel bus! Unmistakable!

    This explains the "oily" smell of pump gas. How "big" is each part? It varies with octane and...over time, it changes.

    There are many question concerning the "whys" and "hows" of the presence of this mix.
    I have several... yet, EPA knows of this...having decreed the gasoline suppliers must reduce the volatility of their product ... so we helpless sheep can pump our own gas in a safe(r) manner. And, we must not forget the profit margin (obscene?) part of the equation. Oil is cheaper than further cracking to straight gasoline.

    Can you still get good MPG with diesel in your gas? Obviously...but I wonder, how much better can you get with just gasoline? Hmmm.... It is a sign of the times...sheep can't think for themselves, right?:confused:
    - Whitevette
     
  3. tbaleno

    tbaleno Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    It may not be addressed in the original article because it is very hard to do anything about the gas you use. Some people do travel to get gas in areas that don't have additives, but it is rare because the extra amount of gas you use to get to the "good" gas stations offsets any benifit of the higher mpg.

    However, that being said, I know inbetween chicago and milwaukee there are stations without "junk" in the gas. I will fill up at those pumps if I am traveling through the area.

    Also, note when you put in your tank data that there are quite a few fuel types to chose from. So that kind of data can be stored and compared at cleanmpg (if people actually enter the data when they put in a tank).
     
  4. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Hi Whitevette:

    ___We have discussed top Tier fuels but again, you do not have a choice other then the station you can use most of the time so it doesn’t matter. We have also discussed the real fuel related hits wrt RFG types, E10 additions, and winter summer formulations in various parts of the country. These have a much larger impact then any trace amount of diesel that may have gotten into the RBOB mix. These Q&A's are beyond the scope of this article as well ...

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne
     
  5. johnburwell

    johnburwell New Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Good points. Also, you will not see it on your MPGs but you will use less fuel if you take the inside of every curve (trafic allowing).
    Thanks,
    Woody
     
  6. adel_Altima

    adel_Altima New Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Hi everyone,

    Thanks a lot for this article - I'm starting to use as many of the FE methods as I can - mainly I've stopped using the AC and I'm trying to avoid breaking a lot like I used to do.

    I'm hoping to use as many of the Hypermiling techniques as I can on my '01 Altima(automatic). According to EPA it gets about 22 MPG in the city, and if I can get it up to at least 30 that would be great.

    Thanks for all the help,
    adel
     
  7. psic

    psic Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Hi, everyone,

    Another new member here, I've got a '96 Toyota Carina (also known as the Corona, I don't think it was ever sold in the US, curious people click here :) ) with a 1.8 petrol engine and manual transmission. I'm getting around 40 MPG with it, which is pretty good for this kind of car.

    Anyways, I've just read the great article on 'The Why's and how to Hypermile' and some other threads on these forums, but I can't find many suggestions for cars with manual transmission? Most of the topics are about hybrids which, for the time being anyway, doesn't help me much.

    Oh, and great site by the way!
     
  8. lightfoot

    lightfoot Reformed speeder

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Welcome to the forum!! There are plenty of people here who drive manual transmission cars - me for example. Just look at their signatures. You can use most of the general methods described here and they usually work BETTER with a manual than with automatics. Pulse and glide especially. There has been discussion on this but unfortunately I can't point you to a specific thread.

    Glad you like the site - it's certainly a congenial bunch of people!
     
  9. Ruminator

    Ruminator Ohio Fisherman

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    This article is the first I've read on the topic of improving vehicle mpg.

    My thanks xcel! Its an excellent eye-opener!!

    I've known about tire pressures and rolling resistance; I am wondering if there has been any comparison studies of specific rubber compounds, and specific tire models showing their rolling resistance numbers?

    I apologize. I'm not trying to hijack your thread, my initial excitement got the better of me. :rolleyes: :cool:
     
  10. psic

    psic Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Well, I know the German ADAC (car association, think AAA in the US) does tests every year on quite a few different tires at a couple of different sizes. One of the things they test is rolling resistance, though they usually put more of an emphasys on grip (in the dry and in the wet), braking distance, etc. The site is www.adac.de, but I think it's only in German, and the tires might be different to what is sold in the States. The tires I have at the moment have the lowest rolling resistance of all (the tires are Michelin Energy something), I'll have to check for winter tires for my dad soon.
     
  11. psic

    psic Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Actually, it should help with MPGs as well, though not by much. Not actually taking the inside of a curve, but driving like racing car drivers do, so start at the outside, at the apex (top) of the curve be on the inside, then finish on the outside. This is the fastest way around a curve, and it keeps your speed up as much as possible (cars lose speed on curves). Very useful for the glide part of a P&G, but obviously you have to beware of traffic and the traffic regulations. It works even if you just stick to your lane.
     
  12. Ruminator

    Ruminator Ohio Fisherman

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Thanks for the info psic. I wonder if there are any US organizations that do such comparisons?
    Michelin Energy tires, do they advertize them to have the least RR of any tires? Does it hurt their wet surface performance?

    psic, I think that johnburwell meant that the corner manuever won't show up on any MPG equipment as a recognized savings, but that it still is one by allowing your speed to remain hgher than otherwise?
     
  13. psic

    psic Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    I haven't a clue. Perhaps the AAA? I like ADAC's because they are done very professionally and throughoutly (wet/dry stopping distance, cornering grip, rolling resistance, during the winter also snow/ice, road noise, etc.).

    Yes, these tires didn't do so well in the wet (though to tell you the truth I haven't noticed much of a difference, especially now that I drive a bit slower). Besides a low rolling resistance they are also quite durable (last a long time), and are good in the dry. They were actually bought by my dad, but if I had to pick I would seriously consider them again.

    Yeah, I wasn't sure, I first thought he ment that you would save on overall driving distance.
     
  14. Snowy_Jeep

    Snowy_Jeep Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Good heavens, have I got a LOT to learn!! And then teach the hubby. I'm optimistic that even with our old beasts, we can way increase our mileage!
     
  15. artfart

    artfart New Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Thank you for all the great information. I drive a '93 Nissan Sentra (manual), and have always beaten the published mpg for this car. Reading through these, I'm reminded of when my dad taught me to drive in 1975. He taught me many of the acceleration/braking techniques mentioned here and to always anticipate when in traffic. I am anxious to learn all I can here to maximize my mileage in the future. Thanks again!
     
  16. some_other_dave

    some_other_dave Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Are there any studies that discuss oil levels in relation to FE? I am having a hard time visualizing how the level of the oil would add to the parasitic drag inside the engine. The viscosity, certainly--but as long as there is a "windage tray" or other method to keep oil froth from hitting the rotating assembly, I don't see how the level of oil can have any real effect.

    -soD
     
  17. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Hi Dave:

    ___Frothing is one another is higher oil temps. About 2 – 3 degrees and every bit helps. If you keep it at half, you gain it all and save on the waste.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne
     
  18. basjoos

    basjoos Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    A couple of additional comments relevant to hypermiling an ultralow Cd vehicle. The benefits of drafting are somewhat less than when driving a draggier vehicle. Drafting helps, but just not to the same degree as it does with a typical car. I'll take advantage of a draft when one comes my way, but don't seek them out.

    Since an ultra-low Cd reduces the FE losses at typical highway speeds, I can DWL up to higher speeds without losing FE. On slightly rolling terrain, instead of backing off on the throttle on the downhill to keep the speed from heading too deep into FE unfriendly territory and then having to add throttle on the next uphill to keep the speed from dropping too low, I will maintain the throttle setting and let the speed build up to 65-70mph on the downhill, which will often then take me over the crest of the next hill without having to add throttle.
     
  19. Elixer

    Elixer Well-Known Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    I've been lurking for a little while and I've always thought about my fuel economy so I thought I would add a few points which I think should be included/incorporated:

    Faster cornering, especially in town. Any speed lost from braking you obviously have to use gas to make up for after you've completed the corner. This applies especially in town. However corners should always be taken at safe speeds. This could be combined with better cornering, ie starting from the outside and then cutting to the inside of the corner.

    Bed covers for trucks - these improve fuel economy for trucks, especially at higher speeds

    Smooth transmission shifting for manual transmissions, as it's own bullet - revving over the engaged rpm, or unsmooth shifts that cause shaking etc can reduce FE. The smoother the better, with rpm matching. I know you've included this with P&G, but perhaps it deserves its own section.

    Clutch in (neutral) down steep hills with enough safe straightaway afterward. I drive a lot of hilly areas, and this one is good for a lot patches of interstate that cross the Rocky mountains. There are areas where one can get 20-30mph of acceleration from doing this. Note that if cornering or braking I always have the engine engaged. This one is good for reaching the peak of a hill on the interstate at 55mph then going all the way down, hitting 75-80 near the bottom, then using that speed to help make it up the next hill. Perhaps incorporate this in P&G with the section about hill climbing.

    Open windows reducing fuel economy - at high speeds it's more fuel economical to roll up those windows and turn on the AC then to have the windows open. Open windows are terrible for aerodynamics.

    I'm also curious about shifting on hills, and mountain roads. Is it more FE to hit that road in 5th with the petal to the metal at 65 and finish at 45, or is it better to downshift to 4th and finish a bit faster?

    Sorry if I mentioned something that's already in the article, I tried to read it thoroughly, but there's a lot of stuff there, especially about hybrids.
     
  20. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Re: Beating the EPA - The Why’s and how to Hypermile.

    Hi Elixer:

    ___Welcome to CleanMPG.

    ___Hopefully the following will help …
    ___DWB
    ___Aerodynamic improvements on all vehicles is not what this dissertation was all about given any number of ways to improve ones Cd. A Tonneu cover for P/U’s is a great one however.

    ___A little to detailed for this but smooth is a good idea. When you see how elite level of P&G is performed, you may be surprised at how it may appear more like a Formula One driver running through the gears then a simple drive down the street. Smooth but very quick is not for everyone when pushing for maximum FE.
    ___Never run with the clutch engaged as the throwout bearing of a MT will be taking load even with none applied to the drivetrain. A FAS or NICE-On as described but with your P/U in N and foot off the clutch is the proper method.
    ___This has more to do with ambient temperature. After some experience, you will find what level of air flow is comfortable (in many of our cases, tolerable) while causing the least amount of Aerodynamic disruption. Running A/C w/ the windows closed at speed does not necessarily give you better FE then windows down without at the same. You will have to learn this through real world experience on your own however.
    ___Never drop the pedal to the metal under any circumstance other then escaping an accident from the rear or some other such low probability scenario. Higher speed into a trough and then DWL up the incline to a minimum target is usually best but each hill and traffic condition has to be handled differently. Practice with reproducible results is the only way to become efficient using this technique.

    ___With practice and a better understanding of the techniques outlined while driving a well setup vehicle in a safe and efficient manner, you will come around to achieving the numbers most here see daily. It is not brain science by any stretch. With a few months of hard work, you can achieve some great numbers for yourself no matter the vehicle you own and drive. Trust me, your future FE accomplishments will be so far beyond any expectation you may currently have it will place a smile on your face every time you look down at the Trip A knowing how far you have traveled with so much more fuel still left in the tank! I would hope that it turns into an endeavor of a lifetime and my only wish is that you also pass on the same to others for the benefit of all.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne
     

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