5 Tips to Improve your RVs Fuel Efficiency

RVs are known for being gas guzzlers. As a family who travels full time, we drive A LOT and gas is by far our biggest expense, so we’re always looking for ways to save on fuel costs. Here are our top tips to improve fuel efficiency in RVs.

Tips to Improve your RVs Fuel Efficiency

1.Check Tire Pressure

Make sure you check your tire pressure before every trip! Running flat means wasting fuel. Make sure to check the pressure when the tires are cold, BEFORE a trip, for an accurate reading. We realized right away we needed a reliable tire pressure monitor with all the traveling we were doing. It has been an invaluable asset!

You can improve your gas mileage by up to 3% in some cases by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure. Under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by about 0.2% for every 1 psi drop in the average pressure of all tires. Plus, properly inflated tires are safer and last longer.

Important Note: The proper tire pressure for your vehicle is usually found on a sticker in the driver’s side door jamb or the glove box and in your owner’s manual. Do not use the maximum pressure printed on the tire’s sidewall.

Tips to Improve your RVs Fuel Efficiency

2. Pack Light

Packing light has many benefits when RVing. One big benefit is getting better gas mileage, as weight is a big factor in fuel efficiency. The more weight you are hauling, the harder your engine has to work. Every 100 pounds (45 kilograms) of extra weight in your vehicle decreases fuel efficiency by 2 percent. Keep this in mind as you are packing up your RV!

Find ways to cut down weight such as avoiding carrying full propane tanks, purchasing supplies closer to your destination, and generally packing less. Making several small changes can lessen your load by hundreds of pounds!

3. Make Routine Maintenance a Priority

Routine maintenance helps keep your RV or tow-vehicle’s engine functioning at a high level, maximizing its fuel efficiency. Have your vehicle checked out regularly by a certified mechanic to take care of oil changes, air filters, tune-ups and any other work to decrease your chance of breaking down and give your gas mileage a serious boost!

Fixing a car that is noticeably out of tune or has failed an emissions test can improve its gas mileage by an average of 4%.

Fixing a serious maintenance problem, such as a faulty oxygen sensor, can improve your mileage by as much as 40%!

4. Drive a consistent speed

RVs aren’t known for having great gas mileage, but one thing you can do to use less fuel is drive a consistent speed. 55-60 MPH tends to be the sweet spot for optimal gas mileage. For every 5 miles per hour faster than 60 that you drive, your gas mileage decreases by up to 7 percent. Using cruise control is important. Accelerating and decelerating are generally bad for gas mileage, and cruise control can help with this.

Tips to Improve your RVs Fuel Efficiency

5. Check Fuel Prices

While this doesn’t help your fuel efficiency, it helps keep your money in your wallet (which is a major reason we care about fuel efficiency!). Fuel prices can vary greatly. By comparing gas prices ahead of time and being prepared, you could save 10 cents a gallon by simply driving another mile down the road to a different gas station.

There are several sources to check prices. The Gas Buddy app can be downloaded on iTunes or Google Play. You can also go to the website and search for the cheapest gas in your area. Gas Guru is an app that is similar and can also be downloaded on iTunes or Google Play.

Depending on your RV’s size, you may have to fill up the tank at a truck stop (this is only if you use diesel). If you are able to avoid them, you can save up to $0.30/ gallon by visiting a regular gas station.

Lastly, avoid higher-octane fuel unless it’s recommended for your specific vehicle. Premium gas is more expensive and doesn’t help your engine unless it specifically requires it.

Keeping these tips in mind can help you save money on the road and hopefully enable you to enjoy traveling in your RV even more! What other tips can you add to my list? Let us know in the comments below!

You might also be interested in:
RV Fuel Choices And An In-Depth Examination Of Ethanol
Pulling Into An RV Fuel Station
Benefits Of A Toyhauler With Fuel Tanks

Lauren is a wife, mother of two, photographer, blogger and lover of nature and adventure! Currently traveling around the U.S. in a fifth wheel, Lauren and her family seek to live life to the fullest and continue to look for ways to simplify their lives in order to live larger with less. Follow along on their journey by visiting their family travel blog.

Discussion
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7 Responses to “5 Tips to Improve your RVs Fuel Efficiency”
  1. ALLEN

    RV Make: Fleetwood,Jamboree , RV Model: 25G, RV Year: 2009

    How do I replace and repair wiring to front overhead marker lights? Will section of overhead bunk ceiling come out and how??

    Reply
    • Customer Service

      Hello again Allen,

      Thank you for your patience. In response to your question-

      Well the best way to get to the wiring is from the outside. You can remove the lens cover and then remove the mounting screws for the lights, the wiring will be directly behind it and you can usually pull them out to check them. If you need to replace the wiring and they are still in tact, I would try to attach the new wires to the old and “fish” them through the walls. Removing the panels can sometimes be a lot of work so I would try to do everything outside that you can first. If you do need to remove the panel, it really depends on how it was installed. Usually it is installed with staples on the sides. There may be some trim that has to be remove first, they are usually installed with brad nails or an adhesive backing. Use a pry bar or curved tool and try to get behind the panel and pull it away from the wall. It can be hard to get started but once you have a little section apart from the stud, the rest can come off easier. They are usually secured on the framing studs going across the middle too so make sure to carefully pull up the panel. The top of the panel can sometimes be held into place with a grooved joint track, it is better to remove the sides and bottom parts first and it should slide out of the track at the top. If you have a window in the overhang, it would have to be removed and by removing this first does help a lot in getting the panel removal started. A lot of care has to be taken in not splitting a panel so make sure to take your time and don’t force them off. I hope this helps!

      Sincerely,
      Dan
      RV Repair Club Technical Expert

      Reply
  2. Randall Hendrix

    RV Make: Forest river, RV Model: Sandpiper , RV Year: 2019

    Putting my info and so I can see stuff on videos

    Reply
  3. Rob Clayton

    RV Make: Safari Trek, RV Model: Path finder, RV Year: 1996

    We are novice rv,ers we found this trek and has 71,000 miles .we need someone to help us figure out the how to get this thing on the go. We live in Zip code 97127.

    Reply
    • Customer Service

      Dear Rob,

      Thank you for contacting us. We an online video streaming website with videos on how to fix and maintain your RV. Unfortunately, we do not offer in home services. Please contact your local dealership. I apologize for any inconveniences.

      Sincerely,

      Taylar
      RV Repair Club Video Membership

      Reply
  4. Thomas Rigby

    RV Make: Thor, RV Model: Siesta, RV Year: 2015, Brand: Dometic

    My dometic skylight will not open electronically, makes sound but no work

    Reply
    • Customer Service

      Dear Thomas,

      Thank you for your patience. In response to your question-

      You would have to get on the roof and open the vent to inspect the components. It is possible there is just something wedging it closed and it just needs assistance opening again but most of the time it is a problem with a gear or the motor. These can be replaced but they have to be done on the top of the vent, usually. If you lift the lid you will see two screws holding in the motor and arm. You can check this for any signs of damage or wear and replace if needed. If it goes up manually it is most likely a problem with the motor and not the gears.

      Sincerely,
      Dan
      RV Repair Club Technical Expert

      Reply