http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/254113

Trucks double the gas mileage to 70 mpg using 'hypermiling' technique

Posted May 1, 2008 by Chris V. Thangham
To cope with high fuel prices, U.S. motorists are employing “hypermiling” technique to increase gas mileage and are able to double the mileage of gas-guzzling vehicles.
Dodge Ram Pickup Truck
Dodge Ram Pickup Truck
Chrysler
The “hypermiling” technique is suddenly gaining popularity. Drivers can optimize the fuel economy of their vehicles by modifying their driving habits. The energy in fuel spent during driving is lost by many ways such as the engine inefficiency, aerodynamic drag, rolling friction, potential energy required to climb hills, and kinetic energy lost to braking (absent regenerative braking).
By following the “hypermiling” tips, users are able to double the gas mileage even in gas-guzzling trucks.
Some of the tips to save fuel consumptions are:
* pumping up tires to the maximum rating on their sidewalls, which may be higher than levels recommended in car manuals
* using engine oil of a low viscosity
* the controversial practice of drafting behind other vehicles on the highway to reduce aerodynamic drag -- a practice begun a few years ago by truck drivers
* keeping speed down
* accelerating gently
* avoiding excessive idling
* removing cargo racks to also cut down on aerodynamic drag.
For more tips click here.
The current gasoline price is reaching an average $3.60 per gallon. Based on a poll, gas prices are considered to be more serious than jobs and health care, according to Kaiser Family Foundation.
So many people are switching their cars to hybrids or driving fuel economy vehicles or skipping driving.
Once you follow these hypermiling suggestions, your vehicle exceeds in gas mileage more than recommended by your vehicle manufacturer.
Wayne Gerdes, a former nuclear plant operator from Wadsworth, Illinois, invented this concept of “hypermiling." Gerdes told Reuters that he gets 40 to 70 mpg out of his Ford Ranger pickup truck, almost twice the official consumption of 25 mpg.
He said he was able to save more than $15,000 in fuel costs.
He started engaging in hypermiling after 9/11 to rely less on foreign oil.
He told Reuters:
"If every vehicle in the U.S. got 45 miles per gallon, we would not import any oil."
Deron Lovaas, vehicles campaign director at environmental group the Natural Resources Defense Council, also recommends this hypermiling technique. He warns the users to be sensible -- drafting behind fast moving trucks may pose more harm than save fuel.
Hypermiling can even make fuel-sipping gas-electric hybrid cars more efficient. Chuck Thomas, 50, a computer programmer from Lewisville, Texas, said he has been getting 71 mpg from his Honda Insight, a hybrid whose EPA rating is 58 mpg, in the two years since he has been hypermiling.
Thomas uses “pulse and glide” hypermiling technique. He accelerates the vehicle at first and then drives with the engine off until it drops down to 15 mph. He then starts the engine back again, accelerates and repeats the process.
Check the hypermiling site for more tips.