Hobo1

Fuel Range Issue and Cold Weather?

25 posts in this topic

Ok so I have noticed for about a month and a half now that my car's fuel range is no longer what it used to be. When I bought the car in April (late March maybe?) my range on an full tank was about 325 Miles, it remained that way until just recently. Now when I fill up, it says I have a full tank but my range is 280-290 miles. It appears to be accurate because each mile or so I do actually lose a mile on the range. Maybe something is wrong with the car or I have suspicions that maybe the recent single digit and below zero temperatures might have something to do with it to. Any ideas?

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It's the cold. Cold has a very big effect on fuel-consumption on cars :) The Spark included.

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I was starting to figure that this might be the cause lol

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Combination cold weather, and winter blend fuel, which has slighly lower energy content. I found my mpgs dropped when the temps fell below 35 degrees. The engine also takes longer to fully warm up. Lately, since its been warmer, been getting over 37mpgs mixed driving.

Smikster likes this

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I live in Indiana, we are having a record year for snow totals and temperatures. I have also seen a drop in MPG's, went from 38-45mpg to 34mpg-37mpg. This is every car though, not just the Spark. Winter takes a tollfor the reasons AUSTEX04 listed above

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Thought it was just me too. I'm lucky to get 29-32 MPG in this nonsense.

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Last two tanks were a low 34 and 35 average but before that we were up to around 40 degrees f and that let me get up near 40mpg again. Winter blend fuel seems to cause less drop in this car than previous cars, only dropping about 2mpg per tank. The cold seems to do all the rest of the damage, and the additional warm up time to do things like keep ice off the windshield.

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Last two tanks were a low 34 and 35 average but before that we were up to around 40 degrees f and that let me get up near 40mpg again. Winter blend fuel seems to cause less drop in this car than previous cars, only dropping about 2mpg per tank. The cold seems to do all the rest of the damage, and the additional warm up time to do things like keep ice off the windshield.

I agree 100%. i averaged 37-38 before winter blend, and 34-35 now.

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41-42 now 38-39.. Thanks winter.

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Around 30 degrees F seems to be the point where everything starts working well again.

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I know that the cold and winterized fuel is not as efficient but my issue is the tank doesn't fill up. It clicks and I still have two or three notches to go :/

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I know that the cold and winterized fuel is not as efficient but my issue is the tank doesn't fill up. It clicks and I still have two or three notches to go :/

Sounds more like an issue with the pump, than with the tank. We aren't allowed to pump our own gas here in Jersey, the attendant sets the nozzle and leaves, the nozzle kicks off, and when he returns he still gets a few more bucks in.

Or, a few of us here were having issues with the gauge not filling all the bars, after completely filling the tank. It was posted here, a few months back. That has seemed to resolve itself.

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Nope, mine rarely shows a full tank, and never for more than quarter gallon worth of travel.

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Mine used to, it hasn't since it was super cold

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i got my spark in aug wonderful gas mileage now in dec iam only get 24 25 chevy says cold weather but my kia soul gas mileage is not different

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I've gotten poor mpgs in the cold for a long time with many cars.

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I get about 1-2 km/l less during the winter.

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It's hard to tell here in south Florida.

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Without going into the boring tech details, the smaller the engine, the greater effect by cold ambient temps on gas mileage. Even once the engine on the Spark has warmed up to proper operating temp (about ±200ºF), driving in cold weather will still use more fuel since the cold ambient temp requires more fuel to keep the engine at efficient operating temperature. Until the engine has warmed to proper operating temp you will notice much higher fuel consumption, maybe as much as 30% in very cold weather. After about 15mi. the engine has warmed enough to give you a reduction of about 10% fuel economy. (based on 15ºF ambient). I may not have explained this properly, but you get my drift.

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Nope, mine rarely shows a full tank, and never for more than quarter gallon worth of travel.

I found if you can find a station where you can be facing slightly down hill it fills better. One pump at the station I get gas at is like that and I can always easily fill it up at that pump. Others it cuts off early and I can jiggle the car a few times and get it to take enough gas to fill up.

I am getting on the highway right now about 320 miles on a tank with one bar on the gauge left. Loving the cheap gas prices because I fill it up on about $16.

Edited by Angrybird12

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I know I'm new to the cars but can you partially block the list radiator grill to help warm up times and to help regain heat? My father has done this with his prius every winter. He competently  blocks what toyota calls a grikk on those cars with foam made for plumbing. He never has overheating issues and barely drops fuel economy. He usually can maintain summer economy through the winter. 

 

Now I know we still have the top section which is sorta big, but what about the very bottom grill by the fog lights. Partially or fully blocking that should  increase mileage but also help with warm up and maintaining heat. My temp drops like a rock once that thermostat opens and then takes about a mile to get back to cause it to open again. 

Edited by Kradilla

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On 11/28/2017 at 9:13 PM, Kradilla said:

I know I'm new to the cars but can you partially block the list radiator grill to help warm up times and to help regain heat? My father has done this with his prius every winter. He competently  blocks what toyota calls a grikk on those cars with foam made for plumbing. He never has overheating issues and barely drops fuel economy. He usually can maintain summer economy through the winter. 

 

Now I know we still have the top section which is sorta big, but what about the very bottom grill by the fog lights. Partially or fully blocking that should  increase mileage but also help with warm up and maintaining heat. My temp drops like a rock once that thermostat opens and then takes about a mile to get back to cause it to open again. 

 

This method usually works fine as long as you are just covering the grill. Still allows plenty of heat transfer. I know folks who used to cover the entire radiator itself and ran into overheating problems. A temp gauge would be nice.

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On 1/21/2014 at 10:37 AM, Hobo1 said:

Ok so I have noticed for about a month and a half now that my car's fuel range is no longer what it used to be. When I bought the car in April (late March maybe?) my range on an full tank was about 325 Miles, it remained that way until just recently. Now when I fill up, it says I have a full tank but my range is 280-290 miles. It appears to be accurate because each mile or so I do actually lose a mile on the range. Maybe something is wrong with the car or I have suspicions that maybe the recent single digit and below zero temperatures might have something to do with it to. Any ideas?

I think the range is based on your recent driving history. If you have been driving mostly highway before fillup, it will show higher range, than if you did stop and go driving before fillup. The computer assumes you will continue driving in the same mode and projects the mileage range available from gas tank.

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On 12/13/2017 at 0:46 PM, Fire Spark said:

 

This method usually works fine as long as you are just covering the grill. Still allows plenty of heat transfer. I know folks who used to cover the entire radiator itself and ran into overheating problems. A temp gauge would be nice.

Thank you for letting me know. I have a Scan Guage ii for my car. Now that the weather is getting as a high as 30F im going to get some water pipe insulation and zip tie that into 80‰ of the lower grill. This all leaves a little opening on the bottom and the whole top open. I'll let you know how it goes. 

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The colder the ambient outdoor temp...the lower your gas mileage.

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