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Old 03-09-2011, 02:36 PM
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More MPG

Given that one owns a car worth nothing which owes them nothing, such as a 1993 Taurus GL 3.8L V-6, which still has decent tires, battery, etc, but is victim to constant replacement of rusted brake lines, power steering lines, leaking hoses, etc, what might be done to squeeze more MPG out of the beast if he has nothing to loose? On average it gets 21.47 MPG.

I already have just pumped the tires up to max allowable, cleaned the plugs, drive it like it is carrying dynamite in the trunk...slow and coasting stops to get red lights mostly green, easy acceleration, etc.

Are there any practical adjustments which might be done to make the gas dollars go further? I forgot to mention that I could put synthetic oil in the thing but then that oil change might exceed the value of the vehicle.

HELP...More MPG needed fast and cheap!

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Old 03-09-2011, 03:03 PM
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Nothing. That's about the best MPG you're gonna get out of an old taurus lol. 21 isn't bad for an old 3.8.
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Old 03-10-2011, 05:27 AM
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Yes there is one cheap item you might want to invest in and that is a dash mounted vacuum gauge, use that to gauge your throttle inputs and you most likely will realize an additional increase in MPG. You can pick up one of these things for next to nothing and hooking it up is as simple as teeing into any convenient vacuum line or port, it is then easy to drive at the best throttle setting for the given situation. Most people have no idea how inefficiently they use the throttle and these cheap and simple gauges can make a world of difference.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:50 PM
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Verify the timing is set to ten deg, with the SPOUT wire disconnected. Dont try to advance the timing because the computer will reset it anyway. Normal maintence never hurts, air filter, tire pressure, etc. If there is a problem the check engine light will come on. Check codes anyway. You dont need a scanner for this, just a jumper wire at the sef test connector and read the codes at the light on the dash. There are many sites on line that can tell you how to do this. Might even be in the Knowledge Base on this site... I havent checked yet.
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Old 03-11-2011, 07:47 AM
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You need one of these

Vince
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Old 03-11-2011, 04:57 PM
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some fuel system cleaner might help
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Old 03-11-2011, 07:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 302 Z28
You need one of these

Vince
Hee Hee. Its just amazing how many different versions of "snake oil" con artists can come up with.
Maybe a turbulator would work too.

Seriously ... injector cleaner twice a year,keep it tuned...plugs + wires
clean throttle body and probably the most important would be an oxygen sensor if it is over 60 thousand miles old.
No one ever thinks about the oxygen sensor...It is a maintenance item like a spark plug you know.
Also keeping the Mass air flow sensor clean is quite important.Just be careful with those, handle with care.
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Old 03-11-2011, 07:32 PM
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You need to visit ecomodder.com a forum on hypermiling and fuel savings. I thought I knew a lot about this, thought I had the handle on it, it's all common sense. I didn't know crap, go hang around there a little and you WILL get a few more miles to the gallon at the very least.

I started practicing what they were saying and without spending a single penny on any gadgets I improved my milage by 20%. This is JUST with driving techniques!

Brian
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Old 03-11-2011, 08:21 PM
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Put a new muffler and a better air intake system. Intake and exhaust are usually worth 3-4 mpg. Cat may be clogged up some too.
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Old 03-12-2011, 11:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
I improved my milage by 20%. This is JUST with driving techniques! Brian


That's why that vacuum gauge works so well, nothing will show you what you are doing wrong like a vacuum gauge! Besides having that gauge there can show you problems developing with the engine long before they would otherwise become apparent. You don't need one of those $75 to $100 dollar gauges either, just a $10 gauge will do the same thing and it will be a real eye-opener, especially if using one of the type meant just for fuel savings. There is no difference in operation of any of them but the MPG type have a face scale that shows in approximate %s what a person is wasting in gas, these things are not "snake-oil" that promise miracles they are just a common sense tool that will show the best throttle setting at any given time. they do work and in almost every case will lead to much improved driving habits and increased fuel economy.
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Old 03-12-2011, 11:25 AM
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You are absolutely right there Red, that is one of the very few "gadgets" that work. I didn't mean to sound the way I did because that is a great tool. There is also a Scan Gauge http://www.scangauge.com/ for later model cars, it's a good tool as well. It will tell you the fuel usage to the friggin tablespoon at any time. It literally will tell you how much fuel turning on your headlamps is using!

I actually have been watching ebay for a cool old Vac gauge for my Rambler.

But if you don't have one, some basic fuel saving driving techniques WILL provide you with the same results. There are many known driving techniques that will be doing the same thing the gauge tells you to do.

I reported this a while ago as I found the results to be shocking to tell you the truth. Now, the funny part is I put a set of used tires on my car (also a Taurus but an SHO and getting 20 mph was the goal) and it kicked the ever loving crap out of my milage! So tires SO make a big difference. I have knocked about 30% of the mileage from when I was practicing hypermiling every day. Where I once got 275 miles to a tank full I am more in the 210 range now! So a few techniques and common sense go a LONG way when it come to fuel economy.

Brian
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Old 03-12-2011, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
I actually have been watching ebay for a cool old Vac gauge for my Rambler. Brian


Back in '68 (when gas was 29 cents a gallon ) I bought a '65 Pontiac Bonneville that had a vac gauge from the factory right beside the speedometer. Seems they were quite common back then but somehow they just never quite caught on even with the gas crunch of the early 70's. Almost everyone has heard the one about driving as if there was an egg on the pedal but that is still just guessing, the vac gauge is easy to use and keeping that needle into the "economy" zone will quickly become second nature.
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Old 03-12-2011, 03:36 PM
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More MPG...

Gentlemen:
Thank you for the many suggestions to get a few more MPG out of the Taurus. I did use the vacuum gauge method of driving on an old 1968 Ford Falcon many years ago. it definitely helps one learn how to apply the foot to the accelerator. I'll dig it out of the parts box and recommission it on the Taurus.

On the Falcon I also experimented with water injection into the carburetor venturi. I can't say that it made a ton of difference but it did reduce spark knock during acceleration. I was amazed that the fuel recommendation in the owners manual called for 95 octane regular fuel. WOW...that was the good old days! I had to retard the spark to drive with the kind of fuel available at the time I owned the car.

The other tips with regard to checking the timing with the SPOUT wire disconnected and using some injector cleaner/fuel conditioner are also worth a shot.

The concept of hypermiling and using the vacuum gauge to monitor the process are good ideas in general.

I made a list of all the points and will work them off one by one. In the mean time I am plotting my mpg and have prior mpg records to rule out the seasonal impact of fuel quality and temperature effect.

Thank you for the comments and ideas.
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