How to Improve the MPG of a Honda Elementby Mike Goldstein
The Honda Element is a compact crossover sports utility vehicle, or SUV, with an EPA gas mileage rating of 20 mpg during city driving and 25 mpg on the highway. According to the Federal Trade Commission, adopting more efficient driving habits, properly maintaining a vehicle and using gasoline with the recommended octane level are the keys to getting the maximum fuel efficiency possible from an Element or any other vehicle. Taking these simple steps can help an Element owner save money at the pump.
Drive smart. Aggressive driving can lower your fuel efficiency by five percent, so avoid quick accelerations. Additionally, fuel efficiency declines rapidly over 60 miles per hour, so staying within the posted speed limits will maintain the vehicle's rated fuel economy.
Avoid unnecessary idling and cold starts. Turn off the Element's engine during long waits in line and combine errands into one trip when possible. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as one trip that covers the same distance.
Pack smart. Leaving items in the Element that do not need to be there can lower fuel efficiency. Just 100 pounds of additional weight in the rear of the vehicle can decrease fuel efficiency by two percent. Additionally, loading items on the top of an Element can increase wind resistance and lower fuel economy by up to five percent.
Keep your Element maintained. Have regular tune ups and keep your tires inflated and aligned. Check your air filter whenever you change your oil. These steps can improve fuel economy by nearly 20 percent.
Save money by using the recommended regular unleaded gasoline for the Element. Using higher-octane fuel does not provide any benefit and costs more.
Mike Goldstein has been writing since 2005 and has been published in "Science" and Boston College's "Intellectual Property and Technology Forum Law Review." He studied Shakespeare at Rutgers University, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in English literature. Music and photography are two of his specialties.