How Does Speeding Affect Your Gas Mileage?

Posted on May 09, 2017.

Drivers today are trying to get the most bang for their buck, especially when it comes to gas mileage.  Gas prices aren’t what they used to be and speeding can impact you when you’re at the pump.  According to fueleconomy.gov, aggressive driving such as speeding, rapid acceleration and breaking, can waste gas.  Such driving habits can lower your gas mileage by roughly 15% to 30% at highway speeds, and 10% to 40% in stop-and-go traffic.  Driver feedback devices can help you drive more efficiently.  A recent study reports that these devices can help the average driver improve fuel economy by about 3%, and those using them to save fuel can improve gas mileage by about 10%.

In addition, your car’s gas mileage decreases once it gets past its optimal speed.  For most vehicles, the optimal speed threshold is around 55 to 60 miles per hour.  This means that every time you go over this speed you are essentially wasting more gas than if you were driving in the optimal range.  You can assume that each 5 miles per hour you drive over your cars optimal speed is like paying an additional $.16 per gallon for gas.  This happens for a few reasons: but the main reason is that you are increasing air resistance.  Pushing air around takes up about 40% of a car’s energy at highway speeds, thus traveling faster makes the job more difficult for your vehicle.

So if you realized you’re spending more time and money at the pump, one of the reasons could be your driving habits.  Watch your speed when you’re out on the road and ease up on hard braking habits.  Your wallet will thank you in the long run, and you will notice more favorable gas mileage: a win-win!