HOW MUCH FUEL DOES MY CAR CONSUME? LET'S CALCULATE
All manufacturers claim their cars are the most fuel efficient, especially when the model is equipped with a variety of fuel-saving features. But how accurate is that claim? Let’s look at two ways you can use to gauge how much fuel your car consumes.
The first one relies on modern technology. Modern cars come with Multi-Information Display, or MID, which provides drivers with various data about their cars – including fuel. MID typically offers two types of information on fuel: actual fuel use at any given moment and average fuel consumption. Your car’s Engine Control Unit (ECU) calculates this information by reading data from fuel injector number 1. You may notice that you are getting different information at different points in time, but this is because the actual fuel use data is updated every 2 seconds and depend on your average speed.
For average fuel consumption data, ECU performs automated calculation every 10 seconds, and the result will be displayed accordingly on your MID. You can manually re-set your fuel data to zero, but this only applies to average fuel consumption information.
While many drivers are satisfied with MID, there are meticulous drivers who consider its data as best estimate only. Is there any way that is practical enough to know for sure how much fuel our cars consume? This takes us to the second way of calculating fuel consumption.
ALSO READ: UNDERSTANDING THE AUTOMATIC GEAR SHIFTER
Called ‘full to full’, this option compares fuel consumption at the beginning and end of day. To start, fill up your gas tank and jot down the numbers shown on your odometer before you start driving.
Next, drive as usual on your regular speed and take your typical route. Go about your day until it’s time to go home. On your way home, make another stop at the gas station and fill up your tank. You’ll need to know how many liters you purchase on this second stop, so keep the receipt if needed. Again, write down the number your odometer displays.
Now, it’s time to calculate. First, find the difference between your beginning and final distance traveled based on your odometer numbers. Next, divide the result with the amount of the second fuel purchase. The following example gives clearer illustration:
Distance traveled and fuel purchased
A = 2.000 km (begining kilometer)
B = 2.150 km (final kilometer)
F = 15 liter
To calculate :
(B – A) / F = Kilometer difference/liter
(2150 – 2000) / 15 = 10 km/liter
The above example shows a daily average of fuel consumption of 1 liter for every 10 kilometers distance traveled or can be expressed as 1:10 ratio.
The ratio in that example is good enough for daily travels. However, it’s not only about distance; your driving behavior and car condition also greatly affect your fuel consumption.
Have fun playing with the numbers!