The term Hypermiling originated in the United States coined by Wayne Gerdes of the Driving Club of Hybrid Vehicles who brainstormed on how to increase fuel efficiency by modifying driving habits. Today, people all around the world are making use of simple and clever techniques in their regular driving styles to gain better mileage from their vehicles. These techniques don’t involve learning any new driving skills. Instead most of the techniques involve refining the present driving style to extract the benefits. Following simple guidelines and rules of both driving as well as car maintenance will surely give you the mileage benefits that you are looking for.
Shed the weight
One of the main considerations about hypermiling your vehicle is keeping an overall track of the load that your vehicle is carrying. Removing some of the unnecessary junk in the boot as well as the roof racks and the cycle racks will relieve the vehicle of carrying unnecessary weight around and thus save fuel. Aerodynamics plays an important role in your vehicular fuel economy and removing the external load does just that as driving in the direction of the wind would. Keeping your tire pressure at optimal limits all the time helps in reducing the friction on the road and thus the friction resistance that will ultimately result in less fuel consumption.
The next best way to hyper-mile your vehicle will be to enhance your driving skill. Try not to rush to your destination, and drive well by starting a little early. Try to use the brake as less as possible to save on your fuel. Leaving room in front of you will allow you to brake more gradually that uses less fuel than applying the brakes suddenly.
If a certain route is known for getting grid-locked, try avoiding the route even if it is shorter. Idling in traffic consumes more fuel than moving at a consistent pace. The alternative to this is to take a route that is longer but is less frequently travelled. You avoid the frustration of bumper to bumper traffic while returning a better fuel mileage.
While driving on busy city streets, try to cruise, rather than accelerate, between stop lights. Accelerate from a standing stop to a set speed that will allow you to coast to the next light. Combine this with gradual braking to make city driving more economical than it is.
Use less power
Making prudent use of your car’s electrical gadgets will greatly increase your fuel efficiency as the battery is charged by the engine. The air conditioner is a real burden on the fuel economy of any car. However, in India, it is unavoidable to just switch off the AC and hypermile in the heat of summer. There is a solution for this as well. Use the AC on its coldest setting at the lowest fan speed. The heat from outside combined with the cool interior should get you the best compromise between comfort and mileage.
Service and maintenance
Keeping your car well serviced is, of course, the best way to hyper-mile your vehicle. Tuning the car keeps it’s performance high, as does high-performance spark plugs. Larger combustion spark allows efficient burn in the combustion chamber with enhanced fuel efficiency and low emissions. Using lightweight synthetic motor oil for your brakes will greatly act on reducing friction and also improve engine life. Changing oil filters at regular intervals can add up to ten percent more fuel efficiency as a clean filter will allow oil to flow more freely to the engine. The same applies to air filters as well, as a clean air filter will provide clean air to the engine and help burn the fuel more efficiently.
Hypermiling has one simple goal: Get the most fuel economy by driving smarter. A simple practice to get started on hypermiling is to plan your drive before setting off. It may take time to completely incorporate these techniques into your driving style, but once you do, the rewards are long lasting.