Fuel economy is important because gasoline costs continue to rise year after year. The better your gas mileage, the less frequently you must stop what you're doing, look for a service station, and refill your tank. Because of this, you may wonder how summertime temperatures affect your mileage, so you don’t need to visit an auto repair professional at an inopportune time.
How Do Hot Temperatures Affect Gas Mileage?
1. Fuel Economy
In many ways, summertime temperatures help you achieve better gas mileage. The engine starts out warmer and can more quickly reach an efficient operating temperature. This helps with fuel efficiency and reduces the need for engine auto repairs. Warm air is less densely packed than is cold air, so it creates less aerodynamic drag on the vehicle. Moreover, summer-blend gas contains about 1.7% more energy than winter blends. This is one reason you'll notice prices at the pump rise during summer.
2. Air Conditioning
However, despite the above, most drivers notice a decrease in fuel efficiency during the summer months. The primary reason for this is temperature control. In particular, air conditioning is a tremendous energy consumer. As any auto repair professional will attest, in extremely hot or humid conditions, AC use reduces fuel economy a considerable amount.
3. Open Windows
Unfortunately, the answer to the air conditioning problem is not simply to turn it off and lower your windows. Traveling with your windows down reduces the vehicle's aerodynamic efficiency and increases drag. At high speeds, this can result in much poorer fuel economy. The best solution is to lower windows on side streets and use the air conditioner once you've reached the highway.
If your fuel economy has dropped or you need some other type of auto repairs, contact Muffler Brothers in Chillicothe, OH. They are a Jasper®-preferred dealer and have served Chillicothe, Ross County, and southern Ohio for more than 17 years. They specialize in tire care, oil changes, transmission repairs, and brake service. Visit their website or call (740) 772-1890 to schedule a consultation.