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Old March 20th, 2011, 06:15 PM   #1
siamu maharaj
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In light of recent fuel price increases, have you changed your driving habits?

I have. I don't accelerate as quickly as I like to. Unfortunately I drive an automatic, so not much I can do here. In a stick you can save a lot of money by short-shifting. Also I have stopped speeding a lot. I regularly used to drive as fast as 120 and normally around 110-100, but now drive in the 65-70 mph range on the interstate; 80 when the speed limit is 70. I've also cut down on unnecessary driving.

As you can see, it's really hurting me.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 08:03 PM   #2
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More importantly, have you seen much difference with your new smoother driving style? I found that it made a 20-30% improvement over driving at speeds much less than you say you did before. I haven't driven in over a year though, so it will come as a bit of a shock when I start again soon. I think anticipation is the key, if you see brake lights ahead, get off the gas while you assess the situation. Try and come to traffic lights as smoothly as possible. Also if you have a manual, when your foot is off the gas and the revs are over c.1200rpm you are using absolutely no fuel, the momentum of the car is turning the driveshaft and gearbox and keeping the engine turning, so try and do that as much as you can when slowing down.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 08:08 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siamu maharaj View Post
As you can see, it's really hurting me.
Yep, driving 70 instead of 120 miles per hour must be hurting a lot
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Old March 20th, 2011, 08:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siamu maharaj View Post
As you can see, it's really hurting me.
I sold my car, how you like them apples.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 09:05 PM   #5
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At this point, no, I haven't reduced my driving (due to it being too chilly to ride my motorcycle or bicycle). $75 CAD still gets me a full tank of petrol (premium grade too) It's going to be an interesting summer, if I'm stuck with my current job, as I have to carry roadworks signs and cones with my truck. The weight of which, adds to the fuel consumption. SHOULD I be hired on with a bus/motorcoach company, then I won't have to worry about driving to/from work with my truck loaded down. I could even use my Yamaha to get to/from work.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 09:08 PM   #6
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in general i dont drive a lot, but indeed, the prices now are very high...
I try to limit it as much as possible... and I use the train and bike whenever I can
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Old March 20th, 2011, 09:30 PM   #7
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i haven't done anything with my driving habbits and style (i was "jew" even before crisis and watched each decilitre of fuel ). i have just reduced unneccessary trips and i make much less kilometers per month than sooner.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 09:31 PM   #8
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I've been on a long mission to get the 67mpg stated as the extra-urban consumption for my car, but to be honest most of the fuel-saving tips that get banded around are things I've been doing for years anyway. Apart from being very observant and anticipating any alterations to speed/power I use the natural torque of the diesel engine rather than opening up the throttle whenever possible, meaning I can be in top gear (fifth) as low as 35 mph and still have reasonable control of the power on a clear road. I don't often carry passengers and only fill the tank up half way meaning the weight of the (not exactly heavy to start with) car is kept as low as possible. Also, regular servicing keeps the mechanicals at maximum efficiency. I expect to get 450+ miles out of a 42-litre tank before the red light comes on, which is good considering it costs me nearly £60 (60% of which is tax, including VAT charged on fuel duty) if I have to brim it.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 10:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Yep, driving 70 instead of 120 miles per hour must be hurting a lot
It does actually. I get all nervous and agitated. I'm much more at home and infinitely more alert when driving fast and overtaking cars. Ever since I've started driving I've come close to having an accident thrice and they've all been at speeds of 30 kph or lower.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 10:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stainless View Post
More importantly, have you seen much difference with your new smoother driving style? I found that it made a 20-30% improvement over driving at speeds much less than you say you did before. I haven't driven in over a year though, so it will come as a bit of a shock when I start again soon. I think anticipation is the key, if you see brake lights ahead, get off the gas while you assess the situation. Try and come to traffic lights as smoothly as possible. Also if you have a manual, when your foot is off the gas and the revs are over c.1200rpm you are using absolutely no fuel, the momentum of the car is turning the driveshaft and gearbox and keeping the engine turning, so try and do that as much as you can when slowing down.
Right now I either drive on the highway or in the city with a stop sign literally every 25 meters. It's really hard to see the impact right now. I do know from my previous experience that most of these tips do work. Of course, you get much higher gains in manual trannies. If you are in an area like mine where you have frequent stops (10 stops in about a mile), there's another thing I do. When at a standstill (at a stop sign or red light), keep a distance of about 5 or 6 feet. Start rolling just before the lights go green. The top revs you hit go down from about 3000 to 2000 when you eventually start accelerating.

Still I miss driving manual cars. Back in 2008 when prices went up I started driving more efficiently and got gains of around 30-40% without any noticeable difference. My commute from home to office went up by only a minute.
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Old March 21st, 2011, 06:48 AM   #11
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Nope, nothing I can really do except pay more. I have tried to curb my aggressive driving but that is nearly impossible with the idiot drivers around here and also makes little difference with the poorly timed lights in my city. I live in suburban Florida so there is no alternative, it's drive or do nothing. I am going car shopping soon and will buy a 4 cylinder so that would be the big change.
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Old March 21st, 2011, 01:47 PM   #12
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I changed my Peugeot 2.0 Sport for a Diesel Golf and i use my Bicycle as often as i could
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Old March 21st, 2011, 04:12 PM   #13
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At the minute, I'm at Uni, which is five miles away. I usually try and walk there as much as possible, which is great when the weather's nice and it's getting me a bit fitter and delaying the good ol' middle age spread (yes I am a mature student!). If it rains I'll get the Metro train and that's very occasionally. The walk only takes me an extra 40 minutes, and over a month I save about £50 on fares. That's £50 I can put in the tank every month when I need to use my car.

However, I hardly use my car anymore. Its a 1999 Passat 1.8T, but when I do use it, i'll usually follow the usual steps for getting good mileage. I'll stick to the speed limits but just make sure that my driving is smooth, anticipating stops, being gentle on hills and minimising breaking. That way I can often get up to 40-42 mpg on a good run and I usually average 38 mpg compared to the official rating of 34mpg.

Most of the time when I need to drive, I'll use my wife's 1997 Audi A6 2.5TDi if she doesn't need it. For its size and age and despite having a large 5 cylinder diesel lump it is excellent on diesel on a long run, as it's a 6-speed and ticks over at 2,000 rpm at 70mph. I've often got over 60mpg on runs from Newcastle to Brighton. This is the same engine (albeit 140 bhp) as the one in an Audi 100 (the A6 is the same shape, just different badge) that broke the Guiness World Record for the longest distance (1,338.1 miles) on a single tank of Diesel (see: http://www.consortluxury.com/article...spx?artID=3124 )



In the rush hour however, i'll be lucky to manage 35mpg in heavy stop-start city traffic - luckily that's occasionally.
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Old March 21st, 2011, 07:11 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirfreelancealot View Post
Most of the time when I need to drive, I'll use my wife's 1997 Audi A6 2.5TDi if she doesn't need it. For its size and age and despite having a large 5 cylinder diesel lump it is excellent on diesel on a long run, as it's a 6-speed and ticks over at 2,000 rpm at 70mph. I've often got over 60mpg on runs from Newcastle to Brighton. This is the same engine (albeit 140 bhp) as the one in an Audi 100 (the A6 is the same shape, just different badge) that broke the Guiness World Record for the longest distance (1,338.1 miles) on a single tank of Diesel (see: http://www.consortluxury.com/article...spx?artID=3124 )
I used to own one but only managed about 800 miles. I am sure that is possible though. It did have a huge tank, I managed to pay over £100 when fuel was expensive just before the recession. Infact as I didn't drive it that often it was a thankfully rare event to fill the thing up, I once did Bristol to Southampton and back with the fuel light on the whole time.
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Old March 21st, 2011, 07:12 PM   #15
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I drive and accelerate slower, never try to go over 2500RPM
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Old March 21st, 2011, 09:27 PM   #16
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Nope. Don't drive much, no real reason to, considering that I'm at college, living and working on campus and everything I need is provided for me here.

Future vehicle choice will not be affected by fuel economy - I'd like to eventually swap my 1999 Ford Taurus (18mpg city, 22mpg highway) for a small or midsize four-door 4x4 pickup (Ford Ranger, Nissan Frontier, Chevy Colorado) for better off-road and snow performance and more cargo capacity, with equal passenger capacity. My main reason for not getting a larger truck is that their size makes them harder to maneuver in small spaces. The difference in fuel economy is just a convenient bit of small print.
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Old March 21st, 2011, 11:08 PM   #17
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I cannot really change my driving habits because I have stopped driving for pleasure since getting married Now I only drive to school or to the store, so that is already a bare minimum. I hope I'll eventually end up in Portland, so I will not have to drive to work/school.
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Old March 22nd, 2011, 10:00 PM   #18
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I heard Portland is bike capital city of US. something like 20% of population commute to work by bike (!). ... and I just walk to my work 25 min every day...
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Old March 23rd, 2011, 12:35 AM   #19
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Not really, although I don't drive much (I think over the winter I've averaged driving my car once every 1-2 weeks, on weekends ).

I live just on the "edge" of the suburbs, but work downtown, so I take the bus and subway to work everyday. It also helps that my company provides me with a monthly pass.

Soon, however, as it gets warm, I expect to drive more (mostly for leisure), but still mostly on weekends. I'm not an aggressive driver either, which probably helps. My car is fairly efficient (Acura CSX, aka Honda Civic 2.0L).
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Old March 23rd, 2011, 12:41 AM   #20
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My utility driving is usually pretty limited as I live fairly close to work. No 40 km commutes for me. So most of my driving is for other things, and I can cut back on them if I want to.

Like TheCat, I drive fairly tame as well, rarely getting into high RPM while accelerating. I do speed on some country roads but driving 90 where 80 is the limit doesn't particularly hurt fuel consumption.

Other than that I don't really care all that much about the fuel price. My annual expenses on insurance, road tax and tolls in other countries exceed the fuel consumption. My annual insurance and road tax expenses equals almost 20 000 kilometers worth of diesel fuel for me.
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