How To Get The Best Gas Mileage

how to improve fuel mileageReader Question
Wow, the price of gasoline for my truck is killing me! I have heard all types of suggestions on how to improve fuel mileage but can you give me your thoughts on the subject of getting better fuel economy?


Houston, TX
Hey there Ron

I used to live in Houston, but moved farther out to Magnolia, TX to be in the country. You are probably not going to like what I have to say, because you probably already know what I am going to tell you….but you were hoping for something new.

There really is only a handful of things you can do to improve the fuel economy in your gasoline vehicle.

  1. Make sure you have a clean air filter installed. if the filter is dirty it will restrict the flow of fresh air coming into the engine. Just like trying to run a foot race with your hand over your mouth, it is hard to breath!
  2. Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Just like trying to run a foot race with the wrong size shoes on your feet. If the shoes are too big they just flop around on your foot. It requires more work on your part to run fast, and under inflated tires require more work on the engine to get the vehicle rolling and keep it rolling.
  3. Use the proper weight engine oil. If your engine is made to use 5W30 weight oil then use just that. Using engine oil that is too thick will make the engine work harder, thus use more fuel.
  4. Stay on top of engine tune ups. These days a “tune up” basically consists of spark plug and spark plug wires and an air and fuel filter. There really isn’t much adjusting the mechanic can do since the on board computer is basically in control over all engine adjustments. Spark plugs that are worn out will cause your fuel mileage to drop and the engine performance to suffer.

Ron, these are the main factors that contribute to better fuel economy, but the best suggestion is get a fuel efficient vehicle! I drive a truck too, you gotta if you live in Texas like we do, but fuel efficiency is NOT high on the list of options most trucks come with.

I hate to say it, but the day is coming soon when I will be driving a Toyota Pruis for 90% of my transportation needs and my truck will only be used when I just gotta have a truck. It’s sad but our government is not too concerned with the current energy problem.

It would be fairly easy to force auto makers to double if not triple required fuel mileage requirements for their vehicles or to find alternative fuels that are cheap and Earth friendly… ethanol fuel is NOT that.

Austin Davis, The Honest Mechanic

Austin Davis,
The honest Mechanic

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Austin Davis, consumer car repair advocate. "Hi there! I love to help people solve their car repair problems and I hope my site was helpful to you today. Thank you for stopping by."