How to Calculate Gas Mileage
Calculating gas mileage is a great way for you to determine if you’re getting the most out of your gas. Some people like calculating gas mileage to compare road trips to expenses procured in other forms of travel, like via train or plane. Another reason to calculate gas mileage is to know exactly how much you pay for the gas you need in running your everyday errands in your vehicle. Here’s how you can calculate gas mileage.
This first method is better used when you want to find out how much you’re using and spending when you’re using your vehicle for your everyday errands.
- Keep a small notebook and pencil in your glove compartment before you even start. This is important in keeping track and calculate your gas mileage.
- Have the gas tank filled completely, but not before writing down the mileage number that you see before you even leave the gas station.
- Try to use your existing gas to near-empty before you refuel your vehicle. When you do refuel, make sure that you’re using the same grade of gasoline that you did when you first logged in.
- When you refill your tank to full, take note of the day, time, number of gallons you need to refill and the mileage shown on your odometer.
- Take your current odometer reading and subtract the previous odometer reading you’ve recorded.
- Once you’ve gotten the difference between the two odometer readings, divide it by the number of gallons it took to refill the tank the second time around.
This second method is recommended if you want to calculate how much mileage you may potentially end up using on a planned trip.
- Calculate your vehicle’s consumed miles per gallon (MPG) using the first method.
- Determine how many miles you’ll be driving to your intended destination.
- Find out the gas prices along the places you’re likely to get your gas.
- Divide the miles you’ll be driving with your MPG. Multiply the dividend with the average gas prices that you’ve determined. This will tell you how much you will probably spend on gas on your trip.
The calculations only require basic math, and you’ll be able to determine how economical it actually is to take your car to travel.
How to Calculate MPG
Fuel costs a lot of money, whether it’s gasoline or diesel, and regardless if you have a universal gas tank or standard one. You need to pay attention to how much gas you consume while driving to save on money and to preserve and extend the lifespan of your vehicle. Here are some ways to calculate your miles per gallon.
Most vehicles and formulations of gasoline have miles per gallon indicated on a label. Remember that the MPG count indicated is calculated under ideal situations; different cars have a different MPG. To measure and calculate your car’s MPG rate, follow these steps:
- Before calculating MPG, you may want to have your odometer reset, or you may want to install a separate odometer to calculate your miles.
- Go to the nearest gas station and fill your tank completely with gasoline or diesel fuel.
- Drive on average speed under normal conditions, preferably on a level road with few turns and curves. Make sure you have the correct tire pressure.
- When the fuel indicator reaches a little under half-empty, pull back up to the same gas station and fill your vehicle with the same pump.
- Record the mileage for the first run, and record how many gallons you filled in your tank.
- Drive on average speed again, until you reach the previous level of the gas tank.
- Halt the car, and record the mileage again.
- Subtract the mileage of the first run from the mileage from the second run.
- Divide the difference by the number of gallons it took to fill your tank. The quotient is the value of your MPG.
There are many ways that you can improve your car’s mileage:
- Maintenance. Proper auto maintenance is cheap, and goes a long way to keep your car on top condition. A well-maintained car has better mileage than a broken, run-down one.
- Driving technique. Keep a light foot on the accelerator when driving. You only need to feed your car enough fuel to move; remember that streets and open roads are not race courses.
- Alternative fuels. Certain fuels like ethanol, biodiesel, or special fuel preparations and fuel additives can help add miles for every gallon of fuel.
Whether you’re an occasional driver, a city driver, or if you go long distances with your car, knowing your MPG count can help you save lots of money on fuel.