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Fuel consumption too high?

Urriellu
Explorer
Explorer
Hello, I have a Ford Ranger 2019 that does 18-21mpg on the highway at around 65mph. I have just purchased a GD 17MKE which is a 21', 6400 GVWR, travel trailer.

I expected to go from 18-21mpg not towing down to maybe 11-13mpg while towing.

Unfortunately I'm doing 8.5mpg at 65mph or 7.4mpg at 75mph.

My brake controller seems to work. RV tires are at 60psi, truck tires at 40psi.

Does this seem reasonable?

Thank you!
84 REPLIES 84

pianotuna
Nomad II
Nomad II
Grit dog wrote:
pianotuna wrote:
Hi,

I think the 75 is a typo.

Try 55 and see what happens.


What would make you think higher speed combined with lower mileage is a typo?
Sounds proportionally correct…


I thought it was a typo because my OEM tires were only rated at 75 mph max. Sorry to not answer you sooner.
Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp-hours of Telcom jars, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

StirCrazy
Navigator
Navigator
Urriellu wrote:
Thank you all very, very much for all the replies.

I just finished a second trip and I made a few changes as suggested:

  • I went from 65-75 mph avg to 55mph.
  • When going uphill I slowed down to 45 mph.
  • I started using premium gas instead of regular.
  • I speed up after stopping veeeeeeery slowly.


My consumption has gone up from 7.5-8.5 mpg to around 12 mpg. Way better!

Just using premium instead of regular also helped a lot, when not towing I went from ~18 mpg (using regular) to 21-22 mpg (using premium).

Thanks again!


just for giggles try it at 50mph to see if it gets better or worse. there will be a sweet spot usaly between 50 and 60 which is the air resistance. the ecoboost motors are good on fuel empty and do have the power to tow, but when you do they are definatly a hog on gas compared to a old traditional motor, but they won't get as sood milage empty so its a trade off. the question to be answered is what botters you most, the fuel milage or the slower traveling speed. I know when towing my 5th wheel with my diesel if I drive at 50-55 I can get 17mpg, but if I drive at 70 it drops down to 10-12mpg.

Steve
2014 F350 6.7 Platinum
2016 Cougar 330RBK
1991 Slumberqueen WS100

ppine
Explorer II
Explorer II
Yes. A Ford Ranger dinky pick-up gets about the same mileage as a one ton diesel.

ssthrd
Explorer
Explorer
Late to the game, but Grit Dog FTW!
2014 Keystone Laredo 292RL
2013 Palomino Maverick 2902
2018 GMC 3500HD, 4x4, 6.5' box, SRW, Denali, Duramax, Andersen
DeeBee, JayBee, and Jed the Black Lab

The hurrier I go the behinder I get. (Lewis Carroll)

Grit_dog
Nomad III
Nomad III
BackOfThePack wrote:
Grit dog wrote:
shelbyfv wrote:
Probably we can skip the irrelevant posturing. OP apparently got what he wanted and hasn't been back in over a month.


You must be new to BotP’s posts. They’re generally a comprehensive ramble, which to be fair, have some good points, but undoubtedly, if he practices what he preaches, is the guy who is _____ing off everyone around him on the highway while he’s practicing hyper-miling! Lol


Unlike you I’ve a few million miles in managing the traffic to get around me soonest. Started that before you were born.


Unlike you, though, I never profess to know something about somebody that I don’t know.
However, if you’re 66 years old or older you could be correct that you’ve been driving longer than I’ve been alive.
That said you have no idea about anything else about me, other than what you may have gleaned from my posts here.
Maybe it takes more than 30+ years of driving to gain that “experience” you speak of though? LOL.
2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29 - Sold.
Couple of Arctic Fox TCs - Sold

Gdetrailer
Explorer III
Explorer III
BackOfThePack wrote:
4x4van wrote:
Gdetrailer wrote:
4x4van wrote:
I have to laugh at the tow capacity wars that the manufacturers are currently waging with small/midsize trucks. Towing a 6400lb trailer with a small 4000lb truck at 75mph? While it may be able to TOW it, and it may be able to STOP it (with trailer brakes), in an emergency maneuver, the trailer will drive the truck. Hope I'm nowhere near the OP when that happens.


Trailer brakes generally are required items once you go above 2,001 lbs in some states and 3,001 lbs in most all other States. So in reality, yes, a "4,000 lb" truck CAN safely not only tow but STOP.

The trucks brakes handles the weight on the truck up to the rated GVWR and the trailers brakes handles the trailers weight up to the rated GVWR.

So in reality, it CAN be safely done, might not be pretty or fun but still very possible to safely stop during emergency maneuvers.

A lot of folks out there towing even greater of a mismatch, while that doesn't make me feel safe it is the reality we must you will want to control trailer brakes as you finish and try to straighten out. deal with. Eventually with a big and heavy enough trailer even a F450-F550 truck will be much lighter than the trailer..

My personal feeling is I would much rather have a bit beefier tow vehicle to start with which provides a firmer platform (IE stiffer springs, firmer shocks and some added weight to match closer to the trailer's weight). But obviously not many people are willing to step off the 1/2 ton platform because they prefer the softer ride and a perceived lower cost to buy and a couple of MPG better mileage when empty.
Agreed that with the correct trailer brakes, the tow vehice can stop the trailer, even in an emergency stop situation. I'm more interested in an emergency "maneuver", such as swerving to avoid another vehicle or something. In that scenario, the trailer brakes are of little value, and the mismatch in weight between the trailer and the truck becomes a major factor in control (or lack thereof)..



You should get out and test that. In an emergency swerve you will want to use trailer brake control to finish the maneuver to help bring trailer back into alignment. How do you think onboard TV electronic trailer anti-sway works?

You want the real deal then get a Hensley or Pro-Pride hitch as once the hitch is locked it’s no longer a hitch but a steering component.

So far as stiffer springs go . . no, it’s the FF/RR weight balance + the percentage on the RR axle with as much suspension compliance as possible on a pickup. Softer is better. Stiffly sprung is likelier to lose the tire contact patch. Weight mismatch doesn’t mean much as it’s maybe 2/10s of a second difference once the LEVER with a trailer at the end of it has gotten the drive axle tires free of traction.


For the record, 4x4van ADDED the section that is in bold type into my post that says "you will want to control trailer brakes as you finish and try to straighten out. ".

Those are not my words but 4x4vans words.

In reality as long as you have your brake controller set correctly the trailer brakes will follow your vehicles brakes closely enough to keep everything under control.

For me, setting the trailer brake controller correctly to give a slight "lead" or "tug" to the trailer brakes. That lead or tug, is critical to help snapping the trailer back into command, otherwise the trailer will continue on fighting you.

As far as "trying that", yes, I HAVE (though not the section that 4x4van added to my post), not because I "wanted" to but because of a deer running right out in front of us while towing on an Interstate at night at posted speed limit of 70MPH with vehicles in front of us and by our side and vehicles following behind us..

Stomped on the brakes to scrub all the speed I could so the impact would be a lot less.. Managed to drop enough speed in a short time narrowly missing the deer (could have sworn I seen deer ticks jumping off for their lives!). The entire rig stayed 100% straight and true the entire ordeal (and for the record, I do not use or have WD or anti sway devices installed).

Had that deer thing repeat a SECOND time a few yrs later and same exact positive results..

Under emergency conditions, you simply do not have the time to mess around with brake settings and that includes the idea of using the manual brake over ride control so you really want to get the brakes setup before you start towing.

As far a HA or Pro-Pride goes, for my setup, absolutely zero need, my truck and trailer combination tows very well, have even towed right through a micro burst storm (60+ MPH straightline winds against the drivers side of the rig) for 20+ miles once.

On edit..

OP reported back to this tread and was pleased with their MILEAGE results after they started using premium fuel and altered their driving habits.. They got their answer about increasing mileage, perhaps it is time to retire this thread?

BackOfThePack
Explorer
Explorer
4x4van wrote:
Gdetrailer wrote:
4x4van wrote:
I have to laugh at the tow capacity wars that the manufacturers are currently waging with small/midsize trucks. Towing a 6400lb trailer with a small 4000lb truck at 75mph? While it may be able to TOW it, and it may be able to STOP it (with trailer brakes), in an emergency maneuver, the trailer will drive the truck. Hope I'm nowhere near the OP when that happens.


Trailer brakes generally are required items once you go above 2,001 lbs in some states and 3,001 lbs in most all other States. So in reality, yes, a "4,000 lb" truck CAN safely not only tow but STOP.

The trucks brakes handles the weight on the truck up to the rated GVWR and the trailers brakes handles the trailers weight up to the rated GVWR.

So in reality, it CAN be safely done, might not be pretty or fun but still very possible to safely stop during emergency maneuvers.

A lot of folks out there towing even greater of a mismatch, while that doesn't make me feel safe it is the reality we must you will want to control trailer brakes as you finish and try to straighten out. deal with. Eventually with a big and heavy enough trailer even a F450-F550 truck will be much lighter than the trailer..

My personal feeling is I would much rather have a bit beefier tow vehicle to start with which provides a firmer platform (IE stiffer springs, firmer shocks and some added weight to match closer to the trailer's weight). But obviously not many people are willing to step off the 1/2 ton platform because they prefer the softer ride and a perceived lower cost to buy and a couple of MPG better mileage when empty.
Agreed that with the correct trailer brakes, the tow vehice can stop the trailer, even in an emergency stop situation. I'm more interested in an emergency "maneuver", such as swerving to avoid another vehicle or something. In that scenario, the trailer brakes are of little value, and the mismatch in weight between the trailer and the truck becomes a major factor in control (or lack thereof)..



You should get out and test that. In an emergency swerve you will want to use trailer brake control to finish the maneuver to help bring trailer back into alignment. How do you think onboard TV electronic trailer anti-sway works?

You want the real deal then get a Hensley or Pro-Pride hitch as once the hitch is locked it’s no longer a hitch but a steering component.

So far as stiffer springs go . . no, it’s the FF/RR weight balance + the percentage on the RR axle with as much suspension compliance as possible on a pickup. Softer is better. Stiffly sprung is likelier to lose the tire contact patch. Weight mismatch doesn’t mean much as it’s maybe 2/10s of a second difference once the LEVER with a trailer at the end of it has gotten the drive axle tires free of traction.
2004 555 CTD QC LB NV-5600
1990 35’ Silver Streak

BackOfThePack
Explorer
Explorer
Grit dog wrote:
shelbyfv wrote:
Probably we can skip the irrelevant posturing. OP apparently got what he wanted and hasn't been back in over a month.


You must be new to BotP’s posts. They’re generally a comprehensive ramble, which to be fair, have some good points, but undoubtedly, if he practices what he preaches, is the guy who is _____ing off everyone around him on the highway while he’s practicing hyper-miling! Lol


Unlike you I’ve a few million miles in managing the traffic to get around me soonest. Started that before you were born.
2004 555 CTD QC LB NV-5600
1990 35’ Silver Streak

BackOfThePack
Explorer
Explorer
Urriellu wrote:
Thank you all very, very much for all the replies.

I just finished a second trip and I made a few changes as suggested:

  • I went from 65-75 mph avg to 55mph.
  • When going uphill I slowed down to 45 mph.
  • I started using premium gas instead of regular.
  • I speed up after stopping veeeeeeery slowly.


My consumption has gone up from 7.5-8.5 mpg to around 12 mpg. Way better!

Just using premium instead of regular also helped a lot, when not towing I went from ~18 mpg (using regular) to 21-22 mpg (using premium).

Thanks again!


Given:

1). Same travel speed
2). TV weighs same both tests

— TT penalty steady-state is 40% at 60-mph. 21 to 12 is 40%, but it trends more to an aero TT. With a box TT it’ll slide towards 50%.

Your adjustments made it about as good as it will get. Part of the numerical baseline for future diagnosis of problems which aren’t clear at first.

Adjust your WDH so that TV steer weight hitched is the same as the solo TV weight value. That’ll give closer to finger-tip steering.
2004 555 CTD QC LB NV-5600
1990 35’ Silver Streak

trail-explorer
Explorer
Explorer
Gdetrailer wrote:
Rangers are not exactly a prime choice for towing, they are more designed for good mileage under no loads..

Hence the reason they only engine choice is a 4 cylinder.
Bob

dodge_guy
Explorer II
Explorer II
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goducks10
Explorer
Explorer
LVJJJ wrote:
When you start worrying about gas mileage you no longer can have any fun RV'ing. Last thing I worry about.


I don't worry about my golf score either. Since I quit keeping score my game improved dramatically. 😉

LVJJJ
Explorer
Explorer
When you start worrying about gas mileage you no longer can have any fun RV'ing. Last thing I worry about.
1994 GMC Suburban K1500
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1965 CHEVY VAN, 292 "Big Block 6" (will still tow)
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L(Larry)V(Vicki)J(Jennifer)J(Jesse)J(Jason)