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Old 11-07-2011, 02:42 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I have been mostly driving my car to and from work, which is less than 2 miles one way and involves a lot of stop and go. My mileage reading has been less than great lately, staying at around 17 or 18 MPG, even after running empty and refilling with higher quality gas.

I went to a get-together tonight and afterward took a coworker home via freeway. I noticed that on the freeway, even driving on a relatively flat incline and going 55 to 60 MPH, that my reading was still only about 18. So, I pressed the 'reset' button for the very first time, and when the thing finally showed numbers again, I was getting way better results. Stayed between 33 and 40, depending on whether I was going up or downhill.

So, I've heard over and over that you can't trust that thing entirely and need to calculate your total mileage. But still, I am confused as to why my reading was "stuck," and that by pressing "reset," that it somehow got "unstuck."

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Old 11-07-2011, 02:57 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Have you ever reset it before? If not then whatever it was showing was your lifetime average, hence the 'stuck' feeling.
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Old 11-07-2011, 03:14 AM   #3 (permalink)
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No, I'd never reset it, but if that's the case, then my lifetime average SUCKS! Still, I have a hard time understanding that, since it has gone up and down drastically in the past.
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Old 11-07-2011, 08:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Have you ever "done the math" and calculate the mpg the old fashioned way?
Lots of reports out there where actual mpg is less than the computer has calculated, BUT, there may be times when it goes the other way, in your favor.

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Old 11-07-2011, 09:46 AM   #5 (permalink)
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This should reset automatically when you get gas but you have to get 3 or 5 gallons, cant remember exactly
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Old 11-07-2011, 10:17 AM   #6 (permalink)
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That would have been (supposedly) the average for that tank - or since you last put sufficient gas in it. I reset it occasionally. I only use it as a rough guide, which I think is its purpose. The only way to know for sure is to calculate from a full tank, getting your real average.
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Old 11-07-2011, 11:43 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Your true 'average' would be a number somwhere in between your 17-18 daily commute mpg and the 33-40 highway trip. If you drive 100 miles at 18mpg and 100 miles at 36mpg, your average would be 27. The true average is easily calculated if you reset the trip odometer and fill the tank each time you add fuel. Then divide #miles on the trip odometer by #gallons added.

After the highway trip, the number will be somewhere in the 30s and then when you commute again, it will fall to somewhere just above the normal 17-18. When you fill up again, it will reset and you will again see the number you usually see for your average. As winter approaches, the number will fall and will probably be lower than what you normally expect, and then it will increase again when the weather warms in Mar/Apr.
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Old 11-07-2011, 11:57 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I am not surprised at your 17 to 18 average. A 2 mile commute is a killer to MPG, especially in cold weather.
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Old 11-07-2011, 03:45 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I got a phone app called gas manager. I have been using it since the first tank. Now im on the 5th tank and it is calculating the same results as shown on the instrument panel. I am consistantly getting 8 l/100km per tank. That's 30 -32 average MPG. Im told by a family friend that has a 2011 elantra, that he was getting significantly better MPG after 15000 kms.
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:34 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks everyone for your input. While I do know how to calculate mileage (I took calculus in college, after all), I am often too distracted or lazy to take the time to do it.

The weather has been super cold lately, which could explain poor mileage. I was confused because I filled up with an entire tank of gas, so the thing should have reset, but it seemed to be stuck, even when on the freeway. I doubt there is any problem with my car, but I was just curious.
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