Honda Pilot - Honda Pilot Forums banner
1 - 20 of 58 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With the fuel prices on the rise and scarcity on the east coast at the moment, I thought I would provide some recommendations on how to get better fuel economy out of your Pilot and any other vehicle you may be driving as I average 21-24 mpg on my 2015 4WD Touring.

1. Improve air intake to your engine. I replaced my paper air filter shortly after I purchased my Pilot with a K&N reusable air filter and I noticed an improvement to my fuel economy and a little more horsepower.
2. Try not to drive over 55/60 mph. Speed limits were originally set to 55 mph for a reason and that reason was physics. Air cannot move around an object traveling over 55 mph and stop being aerodynamic. So you are pushing air. The faster you go, the more air you wind up pushing. Have you ever seen those video's of off road vehicles driving through deep water where a wave is created in front of the vehicle? That is essentially what is happening with the air when you are traveling over 55 mph. Another example is when a semi passes you at speed on the highway. Ever noticed the wind that is generated from the front of it? The more air you push the more work the engine is going to have to do to maintain your speed, the more gas that is consumed and the sooner your vehicle will have to receive maintenance.

Try it out yourself and don't take my word for it. Fill up with gas, reset your trip and don't exceed 60 mph for 2 tanks of gas and watch how many miles you will get out of a tank. The reason you want to do this over 2 tanks is your vehicle learns your driving style and 2 tanks will give it the opportunity to learn your new style. Driving from New York to South Carolina, I once averaged 34 mpg out of my Pilot. But that was using good gas, driving on a mostly level highway and maintaining 55-60 mph. My Pilot learned I was just cruising and I was averaging a little under 500 miles out of a tank.

I participated in the Honda Fit EV program from 2014-2016 where the Fit only got 80 miles to a charge and there was no electric infrastructure where I lived, so I had to learn how to get the best mileage out of the Fit. The effects of the 55 mph scenario I mentioned above is more noticeable in an EV.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,261 Posts
Driving from New York to South Carolina, I once averaged 34 mpg out of my Pilot. But that was using good gas, driving on a mostly level highway and maintaining 55-60 mph. My Pilot learned I was just cruising and I was averaging a little under 500 miles out of a tank.
On I-95 that kind of driving will get you killed between NYC and Richmond. Even in the 55 mph zones the flow is regularly 70+.
 

·
Administrator
2016 CRV Touring AWD, 2005 Pilot RIP.
Joined
·
16,316 Posts
I’ve never driven from NY to Richmond without there being some gawdawful traffic back ups. I95 is truly a road to avoid.
Each time I do Boston to SC it’s via 78-81-77-85.
A single tank is meaningless but I once did 24mpg in a first gen on i81. I also did17mpg on the same road doing 75 most of the time. The saving in time on a 941 mile trip doing 75 is remarkable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
570 Posts
Driving habits are the easiest thing to modify.

I got about 10% improvement from doing an intake manifold / EGR cleanup and new plugs. Expensive gas means it will only take 10 tanks or so to pay for the plugs, instead of 20.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,364 Posts
If equipped, Econ button.
Low roll resistant, light weight eco tires.
Increase psi in tires. (within safety limits)
Slow acceleration.
Anticipate braking. Decelerate sooner.
Lighten the load. Remove unused seats and spare tire.
Engine maintenance, clean air filter, clean the MAF, New NGK Laser Iridium spark plugs (if old), replace/clean PCV, replace/clean EGR valve and passages.
 
  • Like
Reactions: MZX and Daltongang

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,364 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
0 Posts
Less weight equals better mileage, take out stuff inside the car you don't need to haul around, or go on a diet if your fat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,461 Posts
Waste no time or money on the K&N filter. They allow more crud to pass to the engine, and do nothing on their own to improve fuel economy except possibly at full-throttle max RPMs. The rest of the time, the throttle plate is restricting airflow. Tests have also shown that a typical user clean-and-recharge of the filter causes oil to end up on the mass airflow sensor, where it screws up the readings. Bottom line, the OEM paper filter does a better job filtering, flows plenty, and is a cheap and easy toss-and-replace commonly available piece. Use the proper 0W-20 synthetic oil.

Driving conditions and habits are the biggest factors in fuel economy. The roof rack bars use most of one MPG, so should probably stay off the car unless you need them. Pedals are next, where converting gasoline to heat is the job of that wider pedal. The skinny pedal should be used to get to the highest transmission gear possible at a reasonable rate, then held as high as possible to maintain that high gear and converter locked condition. Amazingly, the most economical cruise speed corresponds to the bottom of the EPA's highway drive cycle speed: 48 to 51 MPH, just high enough to keep the trans locked in top gear and converter locked. Let off the pedal on downhills, press only gently on the uphills. AC is off, windows are closed. get all the junk out of the car, as pounds you carry have to be accelerated and lifted up hills. Keep your tires "well inflated", so you aren't converting tread squirming to wasted heat. Hard skinny tires, properly inflated, have lower rolling resistance. Anticipate and react well in advance to traffic conditions that might cause you to slow, and then accelerate back to speed. Slow a little a long way back, vs. waiting to brake to a slower speed and having to recover that lost speed. Drive like you have raw eggs in your shoes.

Drive less, and you'll use less fuel. Drive downhill and downwind. Pay attention, and stay focused on conditions so you don't have to press on the raw eggs in your shoes. It takes fuel and horsepower to make electricity in the car for lights and accessories. There's north of two horsepower consumed at the alternator at high electrical load. The list is long...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,364 Posts
Less weight equals better mileage, take out stuff inside the car you don't need to haul around, or go on a diet if your fat.
😲
Technically, you could weigh 140 and loose 10lbs to 130 and improve fuel economy. Depends on how bad you want to improve fuel economy.
 

·
Administrator
2016 CRV Touring AWD, 2005 Pilot RIP.
Joined
·
16,316 Posts
You could save a lot more money by doing things like reduced cable tv and other subscriptions.
 

·
Administrator
2020 Honda Passport Touring AWD Metallic Steel
Joined
·
4,847 Posts
Guaranteed Fuel Savings Device. Will give you a 100% savings on fuel or your money back. Just 4 easy payments of $99.99.
148707


But wait there's more......
If you act within the next 20 minutes we will throw in absolutely free of charge a set of handle bar streamers........
148708

But that's not all. For the next 100 customers we will include a bright shiny bicycle bell.
148709

A $59.00 value. Just pay a separate handling fee.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
On I-95 that kind of driving will get you killed between NYC and Richmond. Even in the 55 mph zones the flow is regularly 70+.
Very true...lol I usually drove through there between 4:00-6:30 AM.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,261 Posts
While I appreciate the thread, the hypermiling talk is making me start to shake. I think I'm going to give the Traverse the Italian Tune Up a couple times today just to bring me back to enthusiast land. @road2cycle can give you a link to a good Prius forum for saving mileage.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Daltongang

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,261 Posts
Very true...lol I usually drove through there between 4:00-6:30 AM.
Same here, we leave MD around 3 AM on our Disney or Myrtle Beach trips. Get through DC and usually hit Richmond right around 6, that's the ticket.

But I also can't imagine doing that 1,000 mile trip at 60 mph. I usually go 5 or so over while my wife is more 10-15 when she drives the Carolinas and Georgia. The Yukon XL Denali with the Thule roof box got 16.5 on premium and the Traverse without the roof box got 23 on regular.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Daltongang

·
Registered
2008 Honda Pilot EX-L 2013 Honda Pilot EX-L
Joined
·
1,571 Posts
I bought and SUV and fuel economy was not a consideration when making that decision. I try not to drive like a maniac but gas is an unavoidable expense and if it’s $2/gallon of $3/gallon I’m still gonna drive the same amount.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Waste no time or money on the K&N filter. They allow more crud to pass to the engine, and do nothing on their own to improve fuel economy except possibly at full-throttle max RPMs. The rest of the time, the throttle plate is restricting airflow. Tests have also shown that a typical user clean-and-recharge of the filter causes oil to end up on the mass airflow sensor, where it screws up the readings. Bottom line, the OEM paper filter does a better job filtering, flows plenty, and is a cheap and easy toss-and-replace commonly available piece. Use the proper 0W-20 synthetic oil.

Driving conditions and habits are the biggest factors in fuel economy. The roof rack bars use most of one MPG, so should probably stay off the car unless you need them. Pedals are next, where converting gasoline to heat is the job of that wider pedal. The skinny pedal should be used to get to the highest transmission gear possible at a reasonable rate, then held as high as possible to maintain that high gear and converter locked condition. Amazingly, the most economical cruise speed corresponds to the bottom of the EPA's highway drive cycle speed: 48 to 51 MPH, just high enough to keep the trans locked in top gear and converter locked. Let off the pedal on downhills, press only gently on the uphills. AC is off, windows are closed. get all the junk out of the car, as pounds you carry have to be accelerated and lifted up hills. Keep your tires "well inflated", so you aren't converting tread squirming to wasted heat. Hard skinny tires, properly inflated, have lower rolling resistance. Anticipate and react well in advance to traffic conditions that might cause you to slow, and then accelerate back to speed. Slow a little a long way back, vs. waiting to brake to a slower speed and having to recover that lost speed. Drive like you have raw eggs in your shoes.

Drive less, and you'll use less fuel. Drive downhill and downwind. Pay attention, and stay focused on conditions so you don't have to press on the raw eggs in your shoes. It takes fuel and horsepower to make electricity in the car for lights and accessories. There's north of two horsepower consumed at the alternator at high electrical load. The list is long...
Yes, but all good information. I too watched the testing on the K&N air filter and saw what you mentioned. However, I always test my vehicles before I replace the air filter with a K&N to get a baseline and to see if it is worth it. I test the mileage and how it feels with horsepower, and every vehicle I have replaced it on, i have seen a measurable difference. I have seen on average a 2-4 mpg increase in economy and a slight increase in engine performance. Vehicles I have done this on are a 2001 Toyota Celica GTS, 2011 Honda Ridgeline RTL and my 2015 Honda Pilot Touring. I have noticed that the fuel quality has a big impact on this. If I get a real sucky tank of gas, my MPG will drop to like 14-15 mpg and sometimes when I get an extra good tank of gas I may see upwards around 26mpg.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Same here, we leave MD around 3 AM on our Disney or Myrtle Beach trips. Get through DC and usually hit Richmond right around 6, that's the ticket.

But I also can't imagine doing that 1,000 mile trip at 60 mph. I usually go 5 or so over while my wife is more 10-15 when she drives the Carolinas and Georgia. The Yukon XL Denali with the Thule roof box got 16.5 on premium and the Traverse without the roof box got 23 on regular.
I guess we all pick our poison. Is the time it takes to arrive more important or the state your body is in when you arrive? For me, I am making that trip myself so just relaxing and let everyone who is in a hurry go around me makes it so after driving for 17 hours, I am still functional when I arrive and not exhausted and achy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,261 Posts
I guess we all pick our poison. Is the time it takes to arrive more important or the state your body is in when you arrive? For me, I am making that trip myself so just relaxing and let everyone who is in a hurry go around me makes it so after driving for 17 hours, I am still functional when I arrive and not exhausted and achy.
I'd take 2 hours at the hotel letting the kids play on the playground rather than an extra 2 hours stuck in a tiny metal box haha. Our Traverse and Pilot have generally gotten the same mileage on longer trips so 22 mpg at 70-80 most of the way in a large 3 row crossover with the power to pass anyone easily is pretty damn good in my book!

I remember the days when a V6 SUV would never get 20 mpg, let alone well into the 20s. These 3rd gen Pilots and 2nd gen Traverses are getting 27-28 on the same trip, that's incredible.
 
1 - 20 of 58 Posts
Top