Excessive Fuel Consumption – Common Causes And Cures

Poor fuel economy
Poor fuel economy

Excessive fuel consumption can be caused by a number of different things.

So, There are dozens of problems that can lead to excessive fuel consumption, some of them are serious and some can be easily corrected.

Consequently, Identifying the reasons your car has excessive fuel consumption and correcting them will save you money and help you to avoid costly repairs.

Excessive fuel consumption can also be an indicator of a much more serious issue that if left, can develop into an expensive repair.

Did you know that a vehicle can burn up to 30 per cent more fuel if proper maintenance is not performed on a regular schedule?

As a result, Familiarizing yourself with the more common causes of poor fuel economy is a smart way to help keep your car running as economically and efficiently as possible.

We all know the importance of regular car maintenance, but for many reasons, we just don’t do it often enough.

Cars use the most fuel during initial acceleration, so if your trip is short or involves a lot of stops then you will inevitably use more fuel.

In addition, aggressive driving where you accelerate hard and brake late causes you to flood the engine with extra fuel and therefore use more.

Poor gas mileage, especially a sudden drop in fuel efficiency, can be blamed on a number of issues.

The following are common causes of poor fuel economy that may or may not turn on your Check Engine Light:

  • Sluggish Oxygen Sensors
  • Inaccurate or Defective Coolant Sensor
  • Defective Engine Thermostat
  • Engine Misfire
  • Intake Manifold or EGR Valve Leak
  • Worn or Fouled Spark Plugs
  • Dirty Fuel Injectors
  • Low Compression
  • Wrong Oil Viscosity
  • Dirty Air Filter
  • Clogged Converter or Exhaust Restriction
  • Slipping Clutch or Transmission
  • Low Tires
  • Dragging Brakes
  • Too Much Weight in Your Trunk
  • Poor Driving Habits

With no estimated date in sight as to when prices will come down, consumers need to be smart about how to save on fuel costs before they reach the pump. Fortunately, there are many ways to save significantly – without requiring a great deal of effort on your part.

Improve Fuel Efficiency
Improve Fuel Efficiency

Also, Improve Your Driving Habits to Improve Fuel Efficiency:

  • Avoid quick or ‘jackrabbit” starts and stops.
  • Aggressive driving wastes gas.
  • Observe the speed limit. Gas mileage decreases rapidly above 60 miles per hour.
  • Avoid excessive idling. Idling gets 0 miles per gallon. Turn your engine off if you are going to be stopped in traffic for 15 seconds or longer.
  • Use cruise control because it helps you maintain a constant speed limit.
  • Use overdrive gears because the engine speed goes down saving gas and reducing engine wear.
  • Avoid carrying unneeded heavy items in your trunk.
  • Use air vents to circulate air instead of air conditioning.


Most of these tips will give you a very slight increase in MPG — but use several together and the gas mileage improvements will really add up.

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