How to Improve MPG in Full-size Truck - Drive Like Grandpa

Full-size truck owners typically love everything about their trucks except one thing. It passes everything except the gas station. Fuel economy in these behemoths is simply laughable. Here are a few things you can do to improve their MPGs.

How to Improve MPG in Full-size Truck - Drive Like Grandpa
This truck looks cool. But, it is probably not so “cool” at the gas pump.

The first thing to know about fuel economy is that it is largely dependent on how you drive not exactly what you drive. While most cars will get better fuel economy than a large truck (thanks to less weight), you can still drive them in such a way that you reduce their fuel economy. Also remember that just because the EPA estimates say you can get XX MPG, it doesn’t mean you will.

Way to Improve Fuel Economy

Slow down. Really, slow down. Driving the speed limit or monitoring the tachometer is probably the quickest way to improve fuel economy. If you are constantly driving 90 MPG with 3-4k RPMs, you are simply burning through fuel. By slowing down and lowering your RPMs, you will quickly see fuel savings.

Stop mashing the gas. The light turns green and you push the gas to go forward. Are you pushing it like you are at a race? If so, you can forget about good fuel economy. Look, a 1/2-ton truck, is really a 1/2-ton. Moving that much weight takes effort (see: gas) and the more you use to move it, the less fuel economy you will get. Do you really need to see how the truck does 0-60? Let the reviewers do that and spend their gas. It is a large vehicle, quit flooring it at every green light.

Drop excess weight. Trucks have lots of cargo room. You can store all sorts of things in the cab and in the bed. Are you still driving around with sand bags from last winter? Do you keep your golf clubs in your truck at all times? If so, you are reducing your fuel economy. The math is simple: the more weight you have, the more gas it takes to move it. Remove clutter in your truck and you will improve fuel economy.

Stop with the lift/bigger tires. Ever seen a lifted truck with large tires ready for offroading? They are great and fun to look at. If you are concerned with fuel economy, that should be it though – fun to look at. If you plan on getting decent MPGs, don’t even think about adding a lift or increasing the tire size. By doing one/both of these things, you can creating a vehicle with poor aerodynamics and more rubber to move. Simply put, you are sucking out any hope of fuel economy.

Check your tire pressure. Seriously, check your tire pressure. Under-inflated tires are a big cause of poor fuel economy. Keeping your tires properly inflated can save you a significant amount of gas.

These are our top tips. What are yours?