Tires, Tire Pressure and Gas Mileage!
I have always been a little bit of a geek. I have always loved trying to get the most mileage I can out of a tank of gas and this started even before prices were over $1.00. Something that I think that I inherited from my mom.
I have always bumped up my tire pressure and not only did I get better gas mileage, but I got better tire life also. I never realized the impact of tires and pressure on gas mileage until my last set of new tires.
From the beginning. I drive a HS250h which is the only car that Lexus ever built as a hybrid from the start. I love all the toys gadgets and monitors that the car came with, and I even added a scan gauge so that I can monitor even more things. (I must be in a small group for geeks that liked it as they no longer make it) The tires were rated at 51 psi. That seemed very high to me. I read many blogs and message boards and many people have filled these tires to that level. I couldn't quite get that high, but did find that the front tires in the high 40's and the back tires 4 psi below gave me great results.
For the first 2 years I had the car i put over 40,000 miles on it and went way beyond the 20,000 miles that was promised for the original equipment tires. On a trip back from Colorado, I hit a steel t bar with a spike in it and flatted. I decided to just replace all the tires. I went to my local Discount tire and they sold me some great tires that they were sure would be as good or better than the old ones.
To make an already very long story sorter, I had to really work to keep my gas mileage above 35. I tried for 4 tanks of gas and just couldn't do it. I had the dealer check out the car and they said it was the tires. They gave me a tire rack report and I went back to Discount tire. They gave me 4 new low rolling resistance tires from the same manufacturer for the cost of the road hazard protection on all 4 tires. I was hopeful and in the first 5 miles I became very happy again especially when I was able to hold these number for another 30 miles...
And as I look at the picture the car wasn't set in it's eco mode. My record for just over 100 miles, with some very lucky driving conditions was 73mpg. (just in-case anyone was wondering)
After two tanks of gas, I can say, tires and pressure do make a difference. With all types of driving I am back over 40mpg on a regular basis and love driving my car.