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Fuel costs and mileage


Bedrock Bob

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Over the last few months I have really racked up the miles on my old pickup. Gasoline costs are eating me alive.

I heard a radio program that said both mid grade and premium. costs less than reguar to drive. They said that regular was crap and that the higher quality gas will more than offset its extra cost with better mileage.

I have always bought the cheapest fuel and was used to paying $110 to travel between Pecos and Las Cruces, New Mexico. I would use one full tank plus a couple of gallons to get there.

I started using the mid grade this spring and saw it worked! I only spent $89 on gas for the trip and burned just over 3/4 tank. The premium cost about the same to opeate as the mid grade but I can get all the way and half way back on a single tank!'

We are paying more for crappy fuel and are burning a lot more gallons than we need to. Try it the next time you fill up and calculate your cost per mile. I bet you will be surprised to find you will save a bunch of money by using the mid grade or even premium. The difference in the cost of a tankfull is minimal but the mileage gained is real!

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I have heard good and bad from both sides, long time ago I went through the Ford apprenticeship program, got ASE certified in driveability, fuel systems, electronic systems. Ethanol is added to gas to increase octane rating in premium fuel, which actually decreases fuel economy, as it contains less energy than untreated gas, but other additives do increase mileage, a lot has to do with who manufactures the fuel and what additives are added. One of the biggest scams is E-85, everyone loves it because its cheaper, and cleaner, but in reality it decreases your mpg up to 25%, so your using more fuel, in which in turn creates more carbon processing more fuel, polluting the atmosphere. E85 contains approx 75,000 BTU's of energy per gallon instead of 115,000 for regular unleaded gasoline.

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Fourwheeler mag and Consumers reports say NO-not-nyet same as crystals,atomizers and all the ilk. I've tried in multiple vehicles and nuttn' for me on long 500+ mile trips for accuracy as needed for a true test. Top off the tank to 100% full and when there refill to tip top for accurate results. Regular for me works just fine and wallet likes it too over the others...John

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Bob and others ... I make at least 6 trips per year between here Prescott Valley and Denver 867 miles on way. I too believed regular was just fine ... upon testing on two trips I saved about $35 in fuel cost using mid grade and used just under 2 full tanks. With regular fuel I was using about 2.5 tanks for the trip in my 2011 GMC Sierra Ext cab truck with the 5.3 motor and Allison 6spd tranny. In addition I also make at least 2 trips from AZ to NH each year. One way on that trip is just under 3000 miles. I use about 146 gallons or about 20.5 mpg to make that trip on mid grade ... 178 gallons on regular grade or about 16 mpg ... that's 32 gallons of savings. Usually the price difference between the mid grade and regular grade is 10 cents. Some of the Pilot truck stops I fuel at sell the mid and reg grades for the same price ... you have to pay attention to what it says on the pump.

It does make a difference in my truck. Oh and BTW ... I tried the e85 fuel a couple times on a shorter trip because my engine (Flex Fuel rated) is supposedly designed for its use ... lost power and mph (dropped to about 14mpg) on that trip ... won't need to try that again!

Mike

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Yeah, I have to use midgrade, stinks. Also, keep in mind, if your vehicle is older and not flex fuel rated, the ethanol in the fuel reduces the service life of the vehicle. Low percentage ethanol fuel slowly destroys regular fuel lines and corrodes them, at least that is my understanding. The vehicle needs stainless steel parts to withstand the ethanol. Of course, the "may contain up to 10% ethanol" sign at the pump is the slow kill method on your engine, thanks be to the govt.!

I know one guy that actually has a homemade processing plant in his garage and makes biodiesel out of used fast food restaurant grease. He just goes around to the fast food restaurants and collects enough to run his truck. He's a pretty smart guy and has found a way to beat the gas prices that way.

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Rex I've been using bio-diesel in my Toyota now for about two years....anytime I go on a trip I put a cleaner in the tank

to clean the injectors or I can go to another station here in town and get regular diesel ( .60¢ a qt. higher) or what they

call S-10 additive for ( .80¢ a qt. higher).....the higher priced diesel definately does get better milage and more power.

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I hope we soon get off carbon fuels but don't see it in my time. Here are some interesting things I have run into:

Nickel Iron Batteries- Invented over 100 years ago by Thomas Edison as a non-polluting and non-consumable alternative to Lead Acid Batteries using no heavy metals! They have a life of 40 + years, NiFe batteries was a more expensive option and most of these cars owned by collectors such as Jay Leno still contain original functioning NiFe storage batteries constructed prior to World War One.

It would be nice to have a steam hybrid car, takes engine heat to assist/ run the gasoline engine. Look into Ted Pritchard, who made multi fuel steam engines in the 60’s. Took his cars to shows, and the major car manufacturers turned him down. A new technology I hope takes off is Cyclone Power Technologies, the all fuel, steam engine, you can see it at cyclonepower.com , looks similar to the cyclone engines on the Keene Drywashers.

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Bob I just paid 3.34 a gallon for regular and mid-grade was like 3.70 something. That's a pretty big difference to me. But I will try it on a long trip and see what it can do. All I do is drive back and forth to town once a week (about 40 miles rt) so I doubt it would be much savings

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Rim if you only travel 20 miles one way you probably barely get the engine/transmission warmed up before you shut down especially in the cooler winter weather ... those trips are what suck most everyone's gas ... or diesel ... and maybe that's were an electric car would flourish ... but then again I'm not about to go get an electric car just so I can go into town and back. Ya just gotta get out more and drive more to get better mileage! :)

Mike F

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