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Click & Clack
Talk Cars
“The Tappet Brothers’’

By Ray Magliozzi

Don’t expect great gas
mileage from a truck

Dear Car Talk:

inefficiently, with lower mileage.

I bought a used 2008 Ford
We might check for an
F-150 about three years ago. obstructed exhaust too. If your
It’s an excellent vehicle and very engine wasn’t breathing properly,
trouble-free, except for regular that could lead to wasted fuel.
maintenance of course.
Finally, if it’s an old vehicle, we
The only irritating issue is low might check the compression,
fuel economy. I bought a cover
because an engine that’s not fully
for the bed and that improved the
compressing its fuel-air mixture is
mileage, but it still gives me only
obviously not getting the most out
16-18 mpg.
of each drop of gas.
Any suggestions for better
In your case, I really doubt you’ve
miles per gallon? Thanks. -- Frank
got any problem at all, Frank.
Yeah, a Toyota Prius.
If you really want to see if you can
If you bought a zebra, you’d
improve your mileage any further,
expect it to have stripes, right,
you might want to try overinflating
Frank? Well, you bought a pickup
tires by a few pounds more
truck, and you should expect it to
the recommended pressure.
get mediocre gas mileage. That’s
sure to stay below the tire
baked in.
manufacturer’s maximum pressure.
In fact, 16-18 mpg sounds
Also, you can make sure your
pretty good to me. The EPA rating
for this truck, back in 2008, was truck is empty when you’re not
14 mpg city and 19 highway, with actively hauling anything. Extra
an average of 16 mpg. So, you’re weight will decrease mileage. And
already exceeding expectations. you can drive slower.The difference
If you had come to our shop in fuel economy between going
and said that you used to get 75-80 mph versus 55-60 mph is
better fuel economy, and it had enormous. If it matters that much
dropped recently, there are some to you, slow down.
things we would check.
But don’t expect any miracles,
The first would be your Frank. You’re already at the
reliability as a witness. But if you winning end of the F-150 fuel
survived our cross examination, economy bell curve..
we might start by checking your
tire pressure. Low tire pressure is
not only dangerous, but because it
Got a question about cars?
creates a bigger patch of rubber Write to Ray in care of King
on the road, it creates more Features, 628 Virginia Drive,
friction and can also result in Orlando, FL 32803, or email by
lower mileage.
visiting the Car Talk website at
We’d also check your
thermostat. If your thermostat
were stuck halfway open or
(c) 2019 by Ray Magliozzi and
opening too early, your engine
Doug Berman
might not be getting all the way
Distributed by King Features
up to operating temperature. And
an engine running cool will run Syndicate, Inc.


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