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Close-up of a fuel gauge on the dashboard with the red needle pointing at EMPTY with the text “4 Tips to Get Better Diesel Gas Mileage”

If you have a Diesel pickup and regularly drive long distances, then you want to be as economical as possible when it comes to fuel cost. Today’s diesel-powered vehicles are more complex than ever before. This is due to advancements in technology, increased horsepower and torque, and changes in emission requirements. Some things that factor into your diesel’s gas mileage that are generally out of your control include: the age of your truck, how many miles are already on it, how much weight you are hauling, the road terrain, and weather conditions. But there are also a variety of other factors that influence your truck’s fuel consumption. Here are 4 tips to get better diesel gas mileage.

  1. Use premium synthetic diesel engine oil. Regularly checking the oil level in your diesel should be part of your regular maintenance, and you want to use a high-quality synthetic engine oil. Diesels tend to generate combustion “blow by” with more soot. Premium synthetic diesel oils flow well at low temperatures, and stay cleaner by not picking up deposits and impurities in the engine. They can help remove sludge build-up in the motor. A good synthetic oil will also improve the amount of friction between engine components. This results in better overall engine performance and efficiency.
  2. Get regular full-service oil changes. You want to make sure that all your truck’s system components are working properly. Ideally, full-service oil changes should be done every 3,000 miles. Fresh oil helps keep the seals inside the engine soft, which prevents leaks from developing. Diesels tend to generate more soot and acid combustion than gas-powered vehicles, subjecting motor oils to higher temperatures and more engine deposits. Getting frequent oil changes that include cleaning or replacing the fuel and air filters will instantly improve your truck’s performance. A dirty air filter alone will allow contaminates to get into the engine, reducing your truck’s horsepower and potentially damaging the engine components.
  3. Keep engine RPM’s down. A good driving habit for better gas mileage is to ease up on the throttle pedal. Apply pressure gently when using the throttle and try to avoid revving the engine. Use just the required amount of throttle to get your truck up to your desired speed. Gas mileage will improve the more quickly you get your diesel into overdrive and let the maximum torque take over. Try using cruise control to avoid having to use more throttle to go up inclines, letting your truck’s momentum carry it. Don’t drive at very high speeds, since diesels are usually most fuel efficient at around 55 miles per hour. You should also maintain a longer following distance, preventing unnecessary acceleration due to braking.
  4. Choose the right tires. You want to select the right tires for your truck’s usage and intended purpose. Factors to consider when choosing proper tires for your diesel include the tire’s load-carrying capacity, speed capability, and intended service type. A knowledgeable diesel tire supply shop technician can help you with this decision. Unless you are an off-road driver, a good rule of thumb is to use all terrain tires. These tires will provide your truck with the best grip and fuel economy. Don’t use oversized tires. Choosing thirty-five-inch mud tires might look cool, but the heavy tread increases rolling resistance, which reduces gas mileage. Bigger tires are also heavier and require more power for your truck to get rolling. Make sure you monitor the pressure in the tires, since your diesel will lose one percent in fuel efficiency for every ten psi that tires are underinflated.

Gem State Diesel in Meridian, ID was established in 2010, and we have a reputation for our superior diesel repair and service standards. We provide bumper-to-bumper service of Ford, GMC, and Dodge diesel pickups with fast turnaround time. For any of your diesel service or repair needs, just book an appointment online or give us a call at (208) 288-5555.