7 ways to make your motorcycle more fuel efficient

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It is a science experiment in physics to measure fuel mileage. There are a lot of reasons for a particular motorcycle’s fuel economy. There are some things you can do to improve your understanding of fuel economy.

These are the 7 best ways to improve your fuel efficiency.

  • Track your mileage over time
  • Take it easy when you are at the throttle
  • Maintain a cruising speed of 65 mph
  • Reduce idle time
  • Maintain regular maintenance
  • Properly adjust brakes
  • Inflate your tires properly

A smaller engine will generally consume less fuel per volume. This is why motorcycles are often more efficient than cars. However, a small engine doesn’t always mean more miles per gallon. How fuel-efficient a motorcycle is will depend on the gearing and position of the rear sprocket, as well as the shift points. While motorcycles are usually sleek and small, the rider usually isn’t as aerodynamic which causes extra drag.

7 Ways to Increase Your Mileage

There are many factors that can affect fuel efficiency, but a lot of them have to do with how you drive. These are some ways to increase your fuel efficiency.

1 Keep track of your mileage. This is a science experiment in all truth. To be objective and reliable, you must track data. This will give you tangible evidence of your fuel economy. You can track the mileage using either a sheet of paper, or an electronic spreadsheet. You can track your fuel mileage over time by doing this. Note the conditions of your rider as you fill up to adjust for changes in mileage.

Record the mileage every time you fill up. You can track how many miles you have traveled by using a trip meter on some bikes. To minimize error margins, make sure you reset the trip meter in the exact same way each time. The same goes for filling up your tank the same way each and every time.

2 The second, you can easily control the throttle. Because you’re putting more gas in the engine to achieve higher performance, heavy acceleration can be detrimental to fuel economy. To understand this, look at the RPM’s compared to speed or distance traveled. You will have higher RPMs in the lower gears than you would with the higher gears. You can gradually speed up the bike to increase fuel economy.

Higher torque is found in larger bikes. Because of the increased torque at acceleration, larger bikes need lower RPMs and require less gears. To maintain a lower fuel consumption, these cruiser bikes have a lower RPM at highway speeds. This doesn’t always mean a big bike gets better mileage, but it can keep up when driven conservatively.

3. Next, you can watch your speed. This is called easing into acceleration. In general, cruising at a lower speed means that the bike uses less fuel and covers the same distance. The compromise is time. The theory is that there is a way to do this. “sweet spot” The optimal balance between engine power and speed is called the “optimal efficiency”. This can be hard to determine, so you might try different speeds to find the best one for you.

Engine size also plays a role in this. Larger engines can produce more torque than smaller bikes. To maintain higher speeds, a smaller engine must rev higher. Find the speed that suits your needs by weighing your bike. This helps you keep track of your mileage and which variables have been changed.

4. Next, minimize idle time. Idling is often required to warm up the engine and that’s unavoidable. Your MPG will be increased if you are aware of how long and how often your bike idles.

Idling equals ZERO miles per gallon. The engine consumes fuel but does not move. This zero reduces the average. You can’t move with your engine running in town because there are traffic lights, stop signs and stop lights. This is why the in-town mileage is often less than that of highways.

5. Keep up with maintenance. The engine, transmission, and chain all have inherent mechanical resistance. Although oil is used to reduce that resistance, as the oil becomes less or more dirty, it also causes the effectiveness of lubrication to be reduced. This resistance causes the engine to work harder and requires more fuel.

Internal resistance can be minimized by keeping up with maintenance. Maintain the engine oil at a proper level. Transmission oil must be kept at the proper level. Make sure that your chain is clean and free of rust on chain-driven bikes. Don’t overlook the air filter since a dirty air filter will choke out the engine.

Six brakes are designed to resist inertia caused by the bike’s movement when they are applied. When brakes are not applied, they can drag and cause resistance. Bad brake fluid, a stuck brake cylinder or improperly installed brakes can all cause this. You should inspect your brakes for any signs that they are dragging. If necessary, make repairs.

7 Last, tires are directly related to maintenance but have a greater impact on mileage. Because this is where the bike’s power is transferred, the tires can have an impact on fuel economy. Unneeded road force drag can be caused by tires that are under-inflated.

Side note: Inflation can also cause your tires to last less time. Use manufacturer-recommended pressures as a baseline. These pressures will often be displayed on a sticker located on the bike frame.

There is still room. “tuning” your tire pressure. The theory is that overinflating the tires will reduce the tire’s contact surface and decrease drag. This is not a good idea as it can reduce the tire’s life. You should also avoid overinflating your tires.

The Possible Causes of Poor Fuel Economy

There may be instances in which you find your motorcycle isn’t doing as good on fuel as it once was. Perhaps the MPG’s have gradually gone down or sometimes it seems to drop overnight. There is an issue that needs to be addressed in either of these cases.

These are the steps you need to take in order to determine if your MPG has dropped.

  • The basics. Do you need any fluids to be topped-off or changed? Check tire pressures. Are they too low Do they need to be replaced? Are there other things that could be done?
  • Bad spark plugs. Fouled plugs won’t spark hot enough causing some fuel to go unburned. You might discover the root cause if your spark plugs are not working properly. Replace them if necessary and check the effect on the MPG.
  • Leakage of fuel. The fuel economy is greatly affected by fuel economy. Fuel that has leaked onto the ground or not being burned in an engine can cause it to be very hot. These issues should be addressed with caution as gasoline is highly flammable. Cracked hoses, poor fittings, leaking petcock or leaking injectors in fuel-injected engines could all be the culprits.
  • Dragging brakes. Dragging brakes can put unwanted resistance onto the engine. Bad fluid, improperly installed brakes, and stuck brake cylinders can all lead to this.

An older motorcycle may have problems with its internal engine. MPG is affected by carbon buildup in valves and pistons as well as leaking seals. These issues often require engine disassembly, cleaning and/or replacement.

How should my fuel mileage be?

The general range of motorcycle fuel economy is between 30-40mpg. Depending on the variables mentioned above, some bikes can push more. There are many resources to help you determine what your needs are. There are many opinions on the internet, but there are also websites that provide objective data. Fuelly.com is one such website. It collects data on all types of vehicles and their years, makes, models, and other information.

Websites like fuelly.com can help you find the best motorcycles for your needs. There is a list of top 10, or you can search for year, make and model. Combining this with other research will help you narrow down your options.

If you already have a motorcycle, buying a new one just for better fuel mileage isn’t always the best option. It is possible to see what bikes like yours get for fuel efficiency, but keep in mind that yours may be different because of the reasons mentioned above.

A good strategy to figure out what yours could be is to find what range it should be in and then start diligently tracking what you’re getting. This will help you determine what you can accomplish.

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