Gas Saving Products – What’s Your Experience?

Having spent the last couple years running what I would like to think is a semi-successful site dedicated to fuel economy, I have received a ton of emails from individuals and businesses asking me to shill their “revolutionary” gas saving products.

Some ask if I will write about their product for free, while others offer money for sort of a paid review. (It seems odd to me to write a review about a product I’ve never seen, touched or used, but I digress.) I have resisted, so far, simply because I do not trust the claims being made by these individuals and businesses that their products not only won’t harm your vehicle, but will reduce your gasoline consumption by up to 40 percent.

I’ve received requests to write about products ranging from special magnets, to fuel additives, even to ways to run your car using regular tap water. I just can’t get myself to buy into the claims.

I can’t help but think that if these products worked as well as their claims say they will, then they would already be in our cars or in the gasoline we buy. I’m not a big consipracy theory guy, so I don’t think “Big Oil” is in bed with car manufacturers, forcing inefficient vehicles to the market.

I may be incredibly naive and/or overly trusting, but I just don’t think these companies – or the government for that matter – are out to get us.

However, in an attempt to try and be a little more open minded, I was wondering if any of you, the readers of Daily Fuel Economy Tip, have ever actually used any of these products, and if so, what sort of results you’ve been able to get.

Please post your comments below, and let me and everyone else know if there is in fact something out there that works as well as it claims. However, keep in mind, if you post anything that appears to be spam – i.e. with tons of links or just a link with a short sentence saying “this product is great!” – then I will delete the comment.

Comments

  1. I have a “live” fuel economy display on my car’s navi system. What I can tell you after a two-month test is that driving the way “I want” (lead foot, aggressive) versus driving they way “you should” (smooth acceleration, cruise, etc.) clearly saves between 20 and 25%. Yes. That much.

    The only way some magnet is going to beat that is if it’s on the end of a cable stuck to the car in front of you.

  2. “I may be incredibly naive and/or overly trusting, but I just don’t think these companies – or the government for that matter – are out to get us.”

    —I agree, you are incredibly naive and/or overly trusting!
    Nice straw man, there, though. Those companies aren’t out to “get us”, they’re out to “make as much money as possible”–it’s called “capitalism”… have you heard of it?

    Let me break it down for you: If a car company made a car that could seat 7 and get 80 mpg, AND go from 0-60 in 6 seconds or less–people would FLOCK to that car and the company would make scads of money at first, right?
    but then, people wouldn’t buy another car until their ‘wondercar’ blew up. They would be MUCH less inclined to, say, purchase a new car every 5 years (a trend that has made the US car industry strong for a looong time)

    End result? Automakers would LOSE money. Also, the oil industry would lose money because people would buy less fuel. people using less fuel means less wear on an engine, cars last longer, people make those major purchases less frequently, all equaling less market share for auto and oil companies.

    it makes ECONOMIC SENSE to build cars that require lots of fuel because that helps car companies sell more cars, and oil companies sell more oil.
    as to “conspiracies” between oil and auto industries, that’s another idiotic straw man.

    sarcasm>>
    I guess it’s TOTALLY IMPOSSIBLE for auto industry execs to own stock in oil companies, thereby profiting from more oil sold—that would NEVER, EVER happen!
    /sarcasm

    overall, you are right on about the “gas saving devices” –the majority of them are snake oil.
    try to think like a capitalist when you wax philosophically about the auto/oil industry, though–you won’t look as dumb if you do.

  3. There are a lot of hokey sounding products out there, but there are also a lot of additives that do work. I’ve been using one for that last couple of years called DurAlt and I constantly see an 8-12% increase. I even go off it from time to time to make sure that I’m still getting benefit from it, and I do each time.

    You can get this stuff from http://www.fueladditivestore.com.

    The thing about fuel additives is that a lot of companies that run trucks all the time will look into them, but most average consumers aren’t willing to give them a shot because they’ve ‘heard’ they don’t work. The fact is that plenty of them have good data to back them up. Granted, not all are good, so do your research!

  4. I think the major factor behind purchasing a newer car is people wanting something newer/different/upgraded, not because their previous car has broken down. I may be as naive as you say, but I’d be willing to bet that most, if not all cars last longer than five years.

    “People using less fuel means less wear on an engine.” Not quite sure what you’re getting at. How does using less fuel equate to less wear and tear, unless of course, you’re talking about simply not driving as much.

    Finally, I think you’re reaching with your stock analogy. I too own oil stocks, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I’m driving around a gas guzzler.

  5. 1)When you’re driving down the street, and you see a stop sign up ahead, you should lay off the gas sooner rather than later.

    2)Let off the pedal sooner and give your engine a rest as you coast to the stop while braking gently. As an added benefit, your brake pads will last longer.

    These two tips can improve your fuel economy around town by as much as 35%.

    Murdered Out Rides – online discussion of your
    cars, trucks, bikes and services

  6. As part of your research when looking for an additive that will improve your gas milage, take into account how much you are spending for the additive compared to the savings (buying gas less often) you will get by using it. If the additive you buy only yields a 5 to 10% increase in gas milage and costs $3-10, Did you gain anything? Just something to think about…

  7. During 25+ years in the auto parts business and many years involved in drag racing, I have had a multitude of experiences with fuel saving and mileage products and the attitudes of the people who believe in them. I have concluded that there is one primary reason these people believe the hype and will gladly spend their money on these products. It was aptly stated long ago by a former employer:
    “The least common thing in the world is common sense”. The sellers of “gas saving” products bank on this statement being true and, unfortunately, they are not disappointed.

  8. The most inexpensive, efficient and the only proven “Gas Saving Device” available today is YOU. Use of your God given common sense (some may have to borrow it, if they can even get a loan these days) will result in lower fuel costs AND money saved by not throwing it away on snake oil. Each time I hear someone praise one of the myriad fuel saving devices, I am reminded how far so-called “technology” has outpaced good old common sense and how many people have so little confidence in their own abilities to get better mileage that they would rather give their money to someone else who says they can do it for them. Apply this attitude to the current economic crisis and you may see one reason why our country is where it is today.

  9. The best way to maintain top fuel efficiency is to do general maintenance like fuel injection cleaning. This will for sure improve your fuel economy especially if you havn’t been doing it every year or two. Research it.

  10. I just came across an advanced technology oil filter – microGreen. They say it helps improve gas mileage and an extended interval between oil changes. I’m meeting the CEO and will provide more details.

  11. I not only sell this product but use it myself. I have not only used this product in my auto, but use it in much larger Freon and ammonia compressors in the ice making industry. I reduce the amp draw by over 10% in this application in every case.

    In the trucking industry, I have truck owners who have gone over 200k without changing oil, only doing oil analysts every 20k miles. While I agree that most of the fuel saving hype is just simply hype, this company is different and the performance is the real test. By the way, this company provides a 2 million insurance policy against this product harming your equipment.

  12. Brian – you can reduce the wear on an engine if you’re using less fuel because the fuel isn’t burning as hot. Ethanol for example burns cooler than gasoline. Less heat means less wear.

    The idea for those water “batteries” that work by somehow making gas burn cooler would be more efficient because less energy would be lost to the air as heat, allowing more energy to be used to move the car forward. And since the engine would be cooler, it would last longer. The problem is, I’ve never seen proof they actually work. A friends dad tried to build one with plans off the internet, but I don’t think it ever worked.

    Now for a way to actually save gas, I bought an electric bicycle last year. It looks like your basic gas scooter, but with pedals. The pedals are basically useless, but there’s criteria defining what an electric bicycle is so that they don’t have to be licensed or comply with motor vehicle standards. The battery makes it about 25 miles on a charge and I’ve never sen any noticle difference in my electric bill from charging it, so I think it costs a couple dollars a month to power it. The manufacturer says they get the equivalent of 800mpg. If I don’t drive my car any long distances, I usually need to fill up my car with gas once a week. With the ebike, I can cover most of my commuting/errand running as long as it’s not raining and I don’t have to transport something large like colf clubs. With storage under the seat and the compartment on the back I can actually get quite a bit of groceries on it. Plus on hot days I don’t have to get in my oven of a car and sweat while waiting for it cool down at which point it’s probably time to get out. When you think about it, individuals driving large 2000lb pieces of steal and plastic with four seats in them back and forth to work is very impractical. The only thing you’re transporting is you. Something the size of a bike is all that’s needed. Cars should be for transporting families and stuff, not one guy and his briefcase.

  13. Does anyone here _really_ think cars get better mileage? Let’s do the oddest, yet most enlightneing, comparison you’ll ever see.

    I owned a 2000 Neon for 7 years. Kept meticulous track of it’s mileage on trackyourgasmileage.com. It averaged out to 27.11mpg in a mixed environment (hwy/city/4 seasons). If you check out http://www.fueleconomy.gov/Feg/noframes/15829.shtml lo and behold, the .gov site is right on the money! I did peak at 34 mpg on one tank….once. Automatic.

    Now, this car was well maintained. Mobil 1 full synthetic after one year of regular oil, the was was fun to drive and I wasn’t exactly light on the pedal most of the time. For about the last year of it’s life it was lowered 3/4″ (damn thing finally sit like it should!). It had an K&N open intake and the car weighed at just show of 2600lbs.

    Let’s compare that to a car 22 years old. My 78 Volare with a /6, A904 tranny. 3200lbs and not a damn thing tweaked on it. “Gas mileage was initially rated by the EPA at 18 city, 27 highway” (source allpar.com).

    So, 22 years later, 600 pounds lighter and the SAME mileage??? Geeze, makes me want to put a /6 in a Neon and get BETTER mileage because the car is lighter!

    You ain’t getting better mileage so much as the cars are just lighter. That’s why they get written off so easily in an accident.

    Think I’m biased? 2009 Corvette, 15 city/25 hwy (http://www.fueleconomy.gov/Feg/noframes/25200.shtml). 1978 Corvette, 15 city, 21hwy (http://www.mpgomatic.com/2007/10/10/chevy-corvette-gas-mileage-1979-2007/).

    Better mileage from car companies are a scam.

  14. DOH….forgot to add in the obligtory comments on devices used.

    I’ve tried the ‘gas pill’ on my Neon. Got worse mileage, car was actually having a hard time driving (sputtering, stalling at low speeds….). Stopped using it and all returned back to normal.

    Tried the acetone trick. Never noticed any significant difference.

    The only thing I’ve known to make any significant difference is the PVC jar (http://www.himacresearch.com/books/hydro8.html). I’ve made my own design and impressed with the results.

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