FIVE STEPS to Get Bet­ter Gas Mileage

Save Money on Your Next Va­ca­tion

Snowbirds & RV Travelers - - High Tech -

Love your RV, but dread the trip to the gas sta­tion? With sky-rock­et­ing fuel prices it can seem like driv­ing a large RV on a long dis­tance trip is just too ex­pen­sive. But with some dili­gent plan­ning and care­ful main­te­nance there are ways to get bet­ter gas mileage. (So you can splurge on the name brand snacks at the next rest stop.) Here are some tips:

1Check your tires. When your tires are low it can def­i­nitely af­fect your fuel econ­omy – by as much as 3 per­cent. Keep­ing the cor­rect pres­sure for your RV will also pre­vent pre­ma­ture tire wear. If you can’t re­mem­ber to use a gauge, con­sider in­vest­ing in a tire mon­i­tor­ing sys­tem that will alert you if the tires are get­ting low.

2Go for reg­u­lar tune ups. Keep­ing your RV in top run­ning con­di­tion will also in­crease the fuel mileage. Get the oil changed at the tune up. Us­ing a syn­thetic oil will fur­ther re­duce in­ter­nal engine fric­tion and in­crease your fuel ef­fi­ciency.

At the tune up they will also re­place any dirty air fil­ters, which can, de­pend­ing on your RV, boost your ef­fi­ciency by nearly 10 per­cent. Ser­vice tech­ni­cians will also make sure that spark plugs and shocks are work­ing prop­erly.

3Re­sist idling. If you are just sit­ting in the RV try not to keep the engine run­ning. You know you’re get­ting zero kilo­me­ters per litre, right? Just turn the engine off if you’re go­ing to be stay­ing in one spot for more than a few min­utes. Gas en­gines will use more fuel to sit still, and al­though diesels use less fuel there are still lots of re­stric­tions on idling heavy ve­hi­cles. Also, try to plan your trip to avoid rush hour, then you will avoid idling in traf­fic.

4Keep it steady. Don’t put the pedal to the metal when bring­ing the RV up to speed af­ter stop­ping at a light. Once on your way try us­ing cruise con­trol to help you main­tain your speed. Keep­ing the RV at a con­stant speed will def­i­nitely keep your gas use lower. Re­duc­ing your speed can in­crease fuel econ­omy by as much as 7 per­cent.

5Keep it light. There is a rea­son why there are rec­om­mended weights for RVs. If you are trav­el­ling with ex­tra weight, the RV will use more power and thus more fuel. Try not to use the air con­di­tioner if you don’t need it. Us­ing a light hand on the air con­di­tion­ing will put less stress on the engine and help im­prove gas mileage.

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