CLEVELAND — AAA is warning drivers that vehicles fuel-economy display, which tells you the number of miles you can go before running out of gas, might not be accurate.
That’s because the miles-to-empty gauge varies between vehicles, but it’s also based upon driving habits such as speed, acceleration, and driving distance. AAA says because gas is at or above $3 a gallon in most places, people are trying to stretch their tanks before re-filling, but it’s leaving many people stranded on the sides of roads.
According to a study, 74% of drivers use their “miles-to-empty” display when they are low on gas to decide when to fill up.
AAA’s research found that on average, the fuel economy displays of the vehicles showed a relatively low error of 2.3%, as compared to the fuel economy measured by the dynamometer.
However, individual vehicle error varied greatly, ranging from −6.4% to 2.8%. AAA stated that the negative number indicates that one test vehicle overestimated fuel economy by 6.4% or 2.2 mpg, while another underestimated it by 2.8% or 0.9 mpg.
AAA recommends filling your tank before the gas light comes on, around a quarter of a tank. If you wait until it’s empty you risk running out of gas or damaging your vehicle.
As gas prices reach a seven-year high, here are some other tips to maximize your fuel economy:
- Plan ahead and run multiple errands in one trip, and when possible, avoid times of day when traffic is heavier
- If you own more than one car, use the most fuel-efficient model whenever possible
- Avoid hard acceleration to maximize fuel economy and always inflate your tires to the recommended pressure found inside the driver’s side door or owner’s manual
- Remove unnecessary and bulky items from your car. Minimize use of roof racks and remove special carriers when not in use
- Consider minimizing use of air conditioning
- In hot weather, park in the shade or use a windshield sunscreen to lessen heat buildup inside the car
Download the News 5 Cleveland app now for more stories from us, plus alerts on major news, the latest weather forecast, traffic information and much more. Download now on your Apple device here, and your Android device here.