A few fuel saving tips for the way you drive and travel can save hundreds of $$ a year.......sometimes even a month!

A few fuel saving tips RVers can use to make major dents in fuel costs and overnight parking expenses . We deal with RV fuel costs in several ways.
  • #1 Fuel saving tip

    Keep your rig in tip top condition. Faulty equipment is just not going to operate efficiently and that raises your rv fuel cost. This includes keeping the tires, truck and trailer, pumped up to the proper pressure. You can loose a couple of miles
    per gallon (ie. higher RV fuel cost) with soft tires............not to mention the higher likelihood of destroying an expensive tire.(maybe your rig if the tire catches fire?)

  • #2 Fuel saving tip

    This one doesn't actually save fuel, but it will help save money. I utilize an auxiliary fuel tank and work to keep one of the two tanks full, refueling often as needed. This allows me to bypass the over priced filling stations helping to cut rv fuel cost. With one tank always full, or nearly so, I can just roll on through a couple of towns, if necessary, picking and choosing. I can end up saving a few dollars without a lot of extra stress hunting for a place. Rolling down the road with the low fuel light on as I try to save a nickle is not my idea of a good time. All I have to do is be a little patient and I'll find a less pricey gas station!
  • #3 Fuel saving tip

    When we're traveling I keep as much as is possible to the two lane roads. We RV to see the country. So why roar along at 70+mph? How much do you really see considering the "tunnel vision" you develop at 75 mph on the interstate? That unavoidable tunnel vision closes out way to many sights for me.
  • At 50-55 mph .... or less ....on the two lane I see things I would never know were even there, roaring past on the Interstate. I am far more relaxed and at the slower speed it is much easier to stop and investigate some interesting little tourist trap that catches our eye.

    The bonus "icing" is that at 50 mph the improvement in fuel consumption is pretty sweet! I often go from 12 or 12 1/2 mpg on the Interstate ( at 68 mph or so) to 13 1/2 or sometimes even 14 1/2 mpg running easier on the more enjoyable two lane roads. I consider that a pretty good reduction in RV fuel cost. I calculate that to be a drop from .24 cents per mile to around .214 cents per mile or in the neighborhood of an 8% RV fuel cost reduction.

  • #4 Fuel saving tip

    Another one that saves money not fuel......but that is the goal anyway isn't it? When we're moving the rig we travel slow. We try to hold our "trailer" miles to 700 or so a month. At 12 1/2 mpg we burn 56 gallons of diesel. Running relaxed and easier, again on the two lane, with the consumption dropping to 14 mpg we drop to 50 gallons. Our RV fuel cost for moving the trailer / 5W is reduced by $18 a month with $3 diesel.
  • #5 fuel saving tip

    We average our "truck miles" ( running bobtail on day trips) at 1000 miles a month. Pushing harder (faster) or in town we get 18mpg or 64 gallons for 1000 miles. Doing it right, driving soft and easy, I can get 23 mpg and better. (outside of town stop and go traffic) The best I have done is 25.4 mpg at sea level on the Olympic penninsula. This drops my consumption to 45 gallons for the 1000 miles. Saving a sweet $56 in RV fuel cost at $3 diesel.
So we can, with a little discipline, a slower rate of travel ( which is actually a lot more pleasurable I think) and seeing more sights, save a whopping $74 a month in fuel costs!

Anything you could do with an extra $74 in your pocket each month? Take your lady out for a fancy supper? Take that Silverton train ride? Put it in the bank for a rainy day?

Be kind of nice to have the options wouldn't it?

Check out your own rig. Take the two "routes". Compare the RV fuel cost numbers in your rig and the way you drive. See how much nicer life is on the scenic backroads at 50mph or even 45! Compared to the wide eyed, blasting down the super slab at 70+ with your teeth gritted watching the fuel gauge drop as you burn that diesel!

Use some of these ways to save fuel and figure out a few more of your own! Don't let the price of fuel keep you from the RVing you love!


**** 3/13/08*** With the price of fuel jumping hard in the past few months I thought it might be time for a bit of an update on my fuel saving tips.

*** Something to consider, when you're picking your rig, is how you might select a rig sufficient to live in while still setting you up to be able to conserve some fuel... along with the dollars to buy it.

The thing here is to consider how you can save when you are 'in camp' and not moving the rig itself. With our truck, the fuel economy jumps from 11-14 mpg way up to well over 20 mpg. just as soon as we drop the fiver...

IF... I climb on my Yamaha... that mileage jumps up over 45 mpg.! Sweet!

If your preference is for a motorhome... I think having a rig strong enough to pull a toad is one of the best fuel saving tips. Having a high grade economy car... while you're making your 'Long camps' can change your fuel savings with that sort of rig from 4-10 mpg to maybe as high as 35 mpg or better!

So... don't just consider the RV itself when selecting a rig. The fuel saving tip here is to pencil out your entire outfit... since the greatest part of your time will be 'in camp'... set your outfit up to allow the greatest fuel efficiency it can.

*** This next, in my list of fuel saving tips, might sound like it goes contrary to my often voiced advice to avoid debt like the plague... but it really doesn't... as long as you do it right.

This one suggests the use of credit cards! The key is to use discipline! Use credit cards to cut your fuel cost! Yup that's right.

There are quite a few credit cards that actually give you a 5% rebate on fuel purchases, sometimes even more... the KEY is to NOT CARRY A BALANCE. Pay it off every month. Some are only at specific stations, some are for ANY fuel station... shop around and have one or two... FOR FUEL ONLY! and pay it off... if you carry a balance, the % you pay will likely erase any savings you managed to capture.

*** The last of my fuel saving tips is to 'shop' for your fuel. If you have already put in the auxiliary fuel tanks to allow you that option... plan out your route and fueling points to get you to where the fuel is the cheapest.

Many times, just waiting to cross a state line can save a bundle when you're fueling up a couple of tanks.

Check out these sites to check on current fuel prices across the country:
Pilot/Flying J
Diesel Boss
Gas Price watch
Gas Buddy

Keep alert, pay attention to what you're doin' and you can make a serious dent in your fuel costs... and then you can keep on RV Boondocking!

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