Are you Losing Money on Your RV Trips?

It's no secret that the faster we drive the more gas our vehicles guzzle.  Without a doubt there are always going to be times that we are in a hurry and without thinking our foot is a little heavier on the pedal.  But consider these few facts and try to keep them in mind while driving and you may have a bit more control over what you pay at the pump.

Is it really that big a deal?

Your driving habits, like speeding and rapid acceleration, can cut into your fuel use by up to 30%!
The graph below from from shows the direct effect of speed on the miles per gallon your vehicle maintains. 
Note that at 55 mph a vehicle runs at optimum efficiency but that each 5 miles above 55 shows a distinct decrease in a vehicles miles per gallon. This works out to paying 10 cents more per gallon for fuel if you travel 60 mph or 20 cents more per gallon if you go 70 mph. 


According to this effect happens for two reasons:

1) Increasing air resistance. According to CNN, "Pushing air around actually takes up about 40% of a car's energy at highway speeds. Traveling faster makes the job even harder...The increase is actually exponential, meaning wind resistance rises much more steeply between 70 and 80 mph than it does between 50 and 60. "

2) Engines are designed for specific speed, temperature, and rpm ranges. Driving out of these ranges goes against the fundamental design of the engine.
Interesting Facts If the national speed limit were reset to 55, it would save 1 billion barrels of oil per year.
Click here to get your own calculator

Remember back in the 70's when they made the national speed limit 55 mph?  There was much research behind the theory that this would help the energy crisis and applying it personally can still address the cost of fuel for us today. Savings on fuel can give us an extra night eating out on the road or a fancy gadget for our RV.  Happy RVing!

Teri welcomes you to Hidden Valley RV Park
Teri Blaschke is the RV Park operator of family owned HiddenValley RV Park in San Antonio, TX and writer of the park blog “A Little Piece of Country in San Antonio.” Teri contributes to various other blogs with a focus on either travel or social media and how it relates to the outdoor hospitality industry but her passion is serving the RV travel community by providing a memorable RV camping experience and growing the Hidden Valley RV family.  Connect with us on Google+, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter@HiddenValleyRV

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree that driving faster drops gas mileage. However, pulling a trailer completely throws the mileage factor out of whack. It might even be better to drive slower than 55 when pulling a flat faced travel trailer due to the huge hit in resulting drag. I plan on a trip with my TT next fall which will be about 1300 miles each way. I will likely be driving at or close to the speed limit (65-70) due to time constraints but it would be nice if I have a bit of extra time to drop it back to 50-55 to see if my mileage goes up significantly.

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