Need to improve RV gas mileage? You’re not alone. As fun to operate as they are, they can put a dent in your wallet if not careful. Here are some inside tips on how to improve RV gas mileage.
Change Your Driving Style
We know that no one wants to be told how to drive, but the reality is that your driving habits while in the seat of your RV have a massive effect on your gas mileage. The good news is that with just a few minor adjustments, you could see a real return when filling up at the pump.
1.) Improve RV Gas Mileage By: Chill Out On The Gas and Brake
Do everything possible to reduce the number of times you hit the gas or slam on the brake. One study found rapid acceleration and braking can lower gas mileage by 15-40 %. Remember, the more constant your speed, the better the gas mileage you will see. Always do your best to drive as consistently as possible; however, even the best of us can be inconsistent on long hauls after being on the road for hours. Our favorite and easiest way of ensuring a constant speed is to use the cruise control whenever possible. Cruise control provides a perfectly constant speed while also allowing you to focus on the other aspects of driving.
2.) Improve RV Gas Mileage By: Follow The Speed Limit
Stay under 60 MPH and don’t plan a tight schedule if you can help it. One of the best parts of RV’ing is being on the open road, enjoying the views, and experiencing new areas. Plan your trip to take a little longer than what Google Maps says, and don’t be afraid to take your time. For most vehicles, 60 MPH is the sweet spot for gas mileage, and many RV’s say 50 MPH is the best. Anything faster, and you will see a significant reduction in efficiency as well as wear and tear on your rig.
3.) Improve RV Gas Mileage By: Quit Idling
Idle as little as possible. Idling may seem like a minor impact, but studies actually show that idling uses up to 1/2 a gallon of fuel per hour per vehicle. This can also even be significantly increased based on the RV you are driving. Idling for just 30 seconds wastes more fuel than simply restarting the engine when you are ready to leave. So, wherever you are, be sure to cut the power and only start the engine when you are ready to roll.
Route Planning is a Must
Route planning is key to ensuring a smooth, efficient trip. When looking at potential routes, always keep in mind the elevation change, road grade, and necessary stops. Do your best to choose a course with the most negligible elevation gain. And if you do have to change in elevation, look for routes that have the most gradual changes.
The steeper the grade, the worse your RV gas mileage will be. Also, do what you can to reduce stops at stoplights, stop signs, and traffic depending on your area.
As we mentioned in the previous point, the more accelerating and braking required, the less you will improve RV gas mileage. It may result in inconveniences, but in the long run it will help your fuel economy. Plan to travel at off-peak times, and always try and miss rush hour.
Invest in a Fuel Economy Chip
This tip can often be forgotten or overlooked, but is an excellent resource for improving RV gas mileage.
Many people know about performance-enhancing chips that get more horsepower and allow you to get better performance from your vehicle.
However, the same people are unaware that similar chips are designed to help improve fuel efficiency. These chips, which act as the RV brain, learn from your driving style and evolve to maximize fuel efficiency. There are a lot of options, so do your research to determine which may be best for your uses.
Check Your Tire Pressure
This will come as no surprise, but make sure your tire pressure is always taken care of. Trying to improve RV gas mileage starts with healthy tires that will improve your safety and experience. Check the sidewall of your RV to see the suggested psi tire pressure.
Adjust Your Load
Check gas prices before you leave! If you know gas prices will be high in the area you are traveling, consider leaving the heavy items at home. RV weight is a significant factor in gas consumption, and the lighter the load, the less demand put on your motor.
Follow your RV Maintenance Schedule
While we always tell people to stay up to date on their RV’s maintenance, fuel economy is often seen as a secondary benefit. Did you know that a dirty air filter can reduce gas mileage by up to 10%? While startling, that isn’t even the most critical item as others can have an even more significant effect. Make sure to check O2 sensors, which can reduce gas mileage by up to 40%, and ensure you are using the correct oil for your engine.
There are many other factors in maintenance, and we suggest taking them to a professional service to ensure it is all done correctly. Don’t wait around on the upkeep of your vehicle! Make sure you have it done by the standard set in your manual, and if you can, try and get it done earlier rather than later.
About USA Camping Company
USA Camping Company owns and operates 10 RV resorts across the country, including five in Texas. They include:
- On The Lake RV Park (Onalaska)
- On The Beach RV Park (Port Aransas)
- Lake Buchanan RV & Cabin Resort (Burnet)
- Nueces River RV and Cabin Resort (Camp Wood)
- Lafitte’s Hideout RV Park (Port Aransas)
Looking For More Tips?
Another USA Camping Company RV resort has been highlighted in the recent issue of RV Destinations Magazine! Check out the feature and learn more about our Northeast Oklahoma RV park Waters Edge RV & Cabin Resort here:
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