9 Tips To Improve Diesel Mileage When Driving A Big Rig Or 18 Wheeler

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Iron Buffalo Truck & Trailer
September 15, 2023
9 Tips To Improve Diesel Mileage When Driving A Big Rig Or 18 Wheeler

You may save a lot of money whether you drive an 18-wheeler or oversee a fleet of vehicles by cutting fuel expenses. A business that requires a lot of pick-ups, deliveries, and travel time tends to have high diesel and fuel expenditures.

18-wheelers aren't the most fuel-efficient, and that’s largely due to their weight. They barely get 6.5 miles per gallon on average. Their fuel economy varies greatly, from 3 mpg driving up hills to over 23 mpg going down slopes. Even if only downhill roads might be used to construct whole routes, this is not the most effective way to increase fuel economy. Let's instead concentrate on how motorists may reduce diesel prices. Use this straightforward advice to save money and diesel at the same time.

1. Don't fill your tank too much

When the diesel is heated, a tank that is full may expand and overflow. The tank may get heated by the sun or by the engine, which will cause the diesel to overflow when it returns to the tank. Overflow is inefficient and risky for other road users. The additional weight from the diesel may also cause the vehicle to move more slowly.

2. Be cautious while braking

Your vehicle needs extra diesel to restart when it comes to a full stop. While it is mandatory for all trucks to stop completely at stop signs and stoplights and to abide by all other traffic regulations, drivers may use braking tactics to reduce the number of needless full stops.

3. Control your speed

You can keep your diesel consumption stable by driving at a constant pace. Accelerating causes you to use more fuel and burn more diesel when accelerating more rapidly. For this reason, it's crucial to keep your speed below the limit. Typically, the speed restriction for trucks is no more than 65 mph.

4. Regularly fill your tires with air

Your fuel economy increases when your tires are adequately filled. Under-inflated tires may reduce your fuel economy by 0.3 percent for every one psi reduction in pressure. Your tires last longer and are safer for the road when they are properly inflated.

5. Stay in overdrive

Consider gradually accelerating and decelerating as opposed to abruptly beginning and halting. Higher ratios save diesel, and you'll need fewer gear changes to increase and decrease your speed.

6. Don't let your truck idle

Many drivers perform brief errands and leave their trucks idling. Alternatively, they keep the vehicle idling on a chilly or warm day to regulate the temperature. They may even wish to refrain from starting the truck. But it would help if you didn't let your 18-wheeler idle for more than five minutes at a time. A gallon of diesel will be used up in an hour of idle time. The most straightforward technique to conserve diesel is probably to turn off your vehicle when you need to leave it for a bit.

7. Get the most out of your momentum 

Driving a large truck allows you to get a lot of momentum. Even when you maintain a constant pace, you develop momentum that, if you don't apply brakes in time, may cause you to pass through a stoplight. On slopes, though, you may benefit from your momentum. Before climbing a hill, gather momentum so you can utilize the momentum's energy to reach the summit. You may use your built-up momentum to ride the downward slope without pressing the fuel pedal after you've reached the top of a hill. Slow down before you even get to the stop itself when approaching a halt or exit. Avoid overusing your brakes since they lose momentum and reduce fuel efficiency.

8. Be mindful of your driving conditions

T tires have a harder time gaining traction when roadways are slick with ice, rain, or oil. Even on gravel terrain, acceleration is more challenging. For safety reasons and to save fuel, large trucks must accelerate gradually from a standstill. You may adjust the air deflectors on your truck's roof to direct air over the highest point of your trailer. If your load height is unequal, it should be at the trailer's front.

9. Maintain a low load height

Your load's distribution might impact how much work your truck has to put in to start moving. To maximize fuel efficiency, try to maintain an equal and light load.

Final words

Follow these simple tips, and you can quickly increase the fuel mileage of your heavy-duty diesel truck. Positivity is the most crucial factor in optimizing your fuel efficiency. You or your drivers will be more likely to follow these simple strategies to reduce fuel usage if you or they constantly keep fuel economy in mind. If the drivers don't want to implement the plans, even the finest techniques to increase fuel economy are pointless.