Monday, February 25, 2008

Road Trip for a Funeral

Most likely we will be taking the Mighty Corolla this afternoon to a
funeral for our friend Andi. Andi died last week after a year and a
half of fighting cancer. Please keep her husband Peter and their two
children in your thoughts and prayers as they make it through this
difficult change.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Tank 146 - 19 February 2008

Filled up this morning at Woodbridge Costco pump #1 with 10.596 gallons
after going 406.4 miles, making for average fuel economy of 38.35 mpg
for this tank. The only real notable thing about this tank is that I
refueled at the Woodbridge Costco rather than the Fredericksburg Costco,
which sort of helps me to advance my "conspiracy theory" that the
Woodbridge pumps shut off earlier than the Fredericksburg pumps.

However, if this theory is true, that would mean that my fuel economy
was actually worse than advertised for this tank, as I would have gotten
relatively more gasoline had I used the Fredericksburg pumps. Alas, I
shall never know for sure. If I refuel again in Fredericksburg and my
mileage is revealed to be 35 or 36, this helps confirm my suspicions.
Or it confirms that I just drove like a maniac because I knew my mileage
would be low anyway.

But overall the averages should work out in the long run.

The sticker on my car said highway economy would be 35 mpg (I think), so
I consistently beat that.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Tank 145 - 8 February 2008

This morning I filled up at the Fredericksburg Costco, again, with
10.489 gallons at $2.819 per gallon. I went 422.4 miles on this tank,
making for an average fuel economy of 40.27 mpg, which is pretty good
for February.

As I drove past the Woodbridge Costco, I saw gasoline there was $2.759
per gallon. But there was a tanker truck that appeared to be refilling
the underground tanks at the time, and I heard you shouldn't refuel when
the underground tanks are being refilled, as more sediments and such
could make it into your tank. But over the course of 10 gallons, the
cost difference would have been about seventy cents, which adds up over
time, but for today I must not worry about it.

This last tank helped my fuel economy for 2008 to avarage over 38 miles
per gallon, about 0.4 mpg better than 2007's overall fuel economy. But
it's still early.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Check Those Tires

I changed the oil in the Mighty Corolla over the weekend, and also
checked the tire pressure as I was waiting for the oil to drain. Good
thing I did, because all four tires needed a little more air.

Although it was probably related to the cold temperatures outside, wach
tire registered below 30 PSI, so I pumped them up to closer to 40.

It was near the beginning of a new tank, so Iwas interested to see how
this would affect fuel economy for this tank. I've had pretty good
mileage recently, so I was clearly surprised that my tires were a bit

I am pushing 375 miles on this tank so far, and the needle is still
comfortable above the area where the low fuel light turns on. Indeed, I
noticed that I was at 260 miles as the needle passed the halfway mark of
the tank.

This was a great reminder that fuel economy really is affected by low
tire pressure. Particularly in the winter cold, as the air compacts a
bit, be sure to check that tire pressure and make adjustments as
necessary, and you'll see benefits in your fuel economy.

I did this with our minivan a short while ago, and my wife reported
better mileage on her trip computer, as well as better handling and

It only takes a few minutes, and many gas stations still offer free air
(Exxon and Wawa come to mind).

Now, if Costco offered free air, that'd really help me out!