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1st time Tacoma Owner...but problems with MPG!

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Old 02-28-2013, 05:12 PM   #1
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1st time Tacoma Owner...but problems with MPG!

Newbie here. Thanks for all the information here on the forums. I finally sold and traded in my 2003 rusted f150 and a 1999 subaru outback and put the funds towards a new 2013 blue taco i4 4x4 access cab during the Presidents Day sale here in Massachusetts. Everyone drives Taco's out here so I figured I would give one a shot. Pleasure to work with the sales people from Toyota. They pulled no crap and gave me fair value for the f150 trade in that was in poor shape.

I put on the K and N filter and bought a truck cap. I have 500 miles on the truck but I'm getting killed on gas. I'm wondering if it's the cap I put on? Also winter Gas term was new to me and I found great info here on it. But I'm getting only 14.66 to 15.23 miles per gallon out of a 4cyl auto. I don't know what's supposed to be normal. Is it a break in period that sucks up the gas or is the winter blend? I read up on removing the charcoal filter and I'm ready to do it if it will help. I will add that 90% of driving is in the city of boston with about 20 miles a day on the mass pike cruising at 65 heading to work. Should I bring the truck back for some sort adjustment?

Any help or insight would be appreciated.
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Old 02-28-2013, 05:23 PM   #2
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Drive the truck for a few thousand miles then switch to synthetic engine oil (0-20 I believe)

Around 5k I'd switch out the diff to synthetic gear lube, as well.

I put tire pressure to 32 and reduce speed a little on the highway (I get best fuel economy at 52mph)

Alloy wheels and high pressure gas shocks (bilsteins) have made a huge improvement, too.
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Old 02-28-2013, 06:13 PM   #3
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Thanks for the tips! Tough to do 52...we would get killed out here on the pike! lol
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Old 02-28-2013, 06:25 PM   #4
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Take out the k&N filter, clean the MAF, and put in an AFE pro dry filter. The oil on k&n filters can contaminate the maf. Synthetic oils and tire pressure like he said. I hate getting stuck in bean town traffic, kills my milage pretty good. And howdy from the cape!
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Old 02-28-2013, 06:28 PM   #5
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Do you have the stock size tires? Your odometer may be wrong...?

My 4.0 liter V-6 4WD gets religiously 15.5-16.5 city with some highway as a low end of the mileage. If I do pure highway... 18-19 mpg is possible, with no load. That is with California gas witch is watered down with ethylene. This is my third V-6 4WD Automatic Tacoma, and all got the same mileage... even though the first one was a 2 door with a smaller motor (1st gen).

Now, with a 4 cyl. motor, you should be seeing much closer to 20 mpg... so check you tires/ odometer just in case it is turning too slow, and giving you a false poor mileage.

PS a Prerunner is a 2WD truck... as indicated in your ID sig. ??
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Old 02-28-2013, 07:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David K View Post
Do you have the stock size tires? Your odometer may be wrong...?

My 4.0 liter V-6 4WD gets religiously 15.5-16.5 city with some highway as a low end of the mileage. If I do pure highway... 18-19 mpg is possible, with no load. That is with California gas witch is watered down with ethylene. This is my third V-6 4WD Automatic Tacoma, and all got the same mileage... even though the first one was a 2 door with a smaller motor (1st gen).

Now, with a 4 cyl. motor, you should be seeing much closer to 20 mpg... so check you tires/ odometer just in case it is turning too slow, and giving you a false poor mileage.

PS a Prerunner is a 2WD truck... as indicated in your ID sig. ??
that was a mistake it's an SR5. Now you know I'm new to Toyota. It's pisser right now, because my 2003 f150 with 4.6 was getting better gas mileage then I am now. I'm not swapping my k and n, I just dropped 60 bucks, and I never heard of it hurting gas. I don't know how to check odometer with tires spinning but judging on going to work in my f150 as compared to my new Tacoma the f150 is doing the same if not better then this 4cyl. In hindsight, I should have bought the V6...shame on me for wanting to save on gas. I could care less about power. Right now, I just feel like telling toyota to take it back and give me the bigger motor.
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Old 03-01-2013, 04:36 AM   #7
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Give it some break in miles, things are stiff and just mating in. Raise your tire pressure to 35 psi, increase your following distance so you are doing less braking and accelerating in traffic. Lift your foot off the long skinny one early approaching stops, press on it gently and progressively when accelerating. Start it and drive it, idling for warm up wastes fuel, slows warm up adds to intake tract deposits.
Winter mileage is always lower.
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Old 03-01-2013, 05:01 AM   #8
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concur on loosing the K&N - I also made that mistake and then paid the bill to switch - but having a clean MAF and better filtered air is worth it to me. I took one look thru the K&N at the holes in the media and decided dust would sail on thru.

Tire PSI, type, aggressiveness and weight has a substantial affect on my 4.0 liter; I can only assume that would be exaggerated on a 4 cyl.

High Oct gas has also been a benefit - the pickup doesn't hunt for gears as much when climbing hills on higher octane and regularly does 3mpg better. Perhaps this is due to no ethanol in the 92????

Motor oil makes a difference - I dropped 10-30 on my very first oil change and instantly noticed a difference (then I read the manual!).

Synthetic gear oils in all the gear boxes should make a diffence also.

Topper may have an affect, but I never noticed it with our ARE that is the middle height (slightly over the cab) with cargo bars.

In the winter my MPG is around 16-17 Hgwy, town ... winter gas, heavy Hankook 235/85 tires, topper, 250# weight for traction.

Summer I was between 18 - 19 mix driving, sometimes 21 on pure road trip at 65-70 with 265/70 BFG's; 22-23 mpg with some old michelin hgwy tires (I am going back to them next time!)
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Old 03-01-2013, 05:14 AM   #9
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I am getting 19-20 mpg on my 2013 2.7. You don't need to change your oil to synthetic because your truck has 0-20 w oil which only comes in synthetic. I have pumped up my tires to 36psi. Weight also plays a major factor with mpg. I would suspect your topper may be the culpret.

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Old 03-01-2013, 08:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Riddler View Post
Newbie here. Thanks for all the information here on the forums. I finally sold and traded in my 2003 rusted f150 and a 1999 subaru outback and put the funds towards a new 2013 blue taco i4 4x4 access cab during the Presidents Day sale here in Massachusetts. Everyone drives Taco's out here so I figured I would give one a shot. Pleasure to work with the sales people from Toyota. They pulled no crap and gave me fair value for the f150 trade in that was in poor shape.

I put on the K and N filter and bought a truck cap. I have 500 miles on the truck but I'm getting killed on gas. I'm wondering if it's the cap I put on? Also winter Gas term was new to me and I found great info here on it. But I'm getting only 14.66 to 15.23 miles per gallon out of a 4cyl auto. I don't know what's supposed to be normal. Is it a break in period that sucks up the gas or is the winter blend? I read up on removing the charcoal filter and I'm ready to do it if it will help. I will add that 90% of driving is in the city of boston with about 20 miles a day on the mass pike cruising at 65 heading to work. Should I bring the truck back for some sort adjustment?

Any help or insight would be appreciated.
You know, that flew over my head... in California we call them 'camper shells' and not caps (we wear caps on our head, lol). Does your 'cap' stick up higher than the cab of the truck (blocking air flow)?

Keeping RPMs down should be the key... avoid mashing the pedal when you drive away from a stop. Take a long drive this weekend to get a sense of highway mileage... 25 mpg shouldn't be that hard to do (max speed 65).
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Old 03-01-2013, 11:38 AM   #11
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I think that we need to have a sticky to when it comes to the MPG of Tacoma's. I figured it would keep down the majority of MPG threads that we already have on this board. It seems with every new member, there is a MPG thread that comes up. Just sayin'.
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Old 03-01-2013, 12:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Riddler View Post
2013 blue taco
If thats anything like blue waffle, you should have it checked out...

Quote:
I put on the K and N filter and bought a truck cap. I have 500 miles on the truck but I'm getting killed on gas. I'm wondering if it's the cap I put on? Also winter Gas term was new to me and I found great info here on it. But I'm getting only 14.66 to 15.23 miles per gallon out of a 4cyl auto. I don't know what's supposed to be normal. Is it a break in period that sucks up the gas or is the winter blend? I read up on removing the charcoal filter and I'm ready to do it if it will help. I will add that 90% of driving is in the city of boston with about 20 miles a day on the mass pike cruising at 65 heading to work. Should I bring the truck back for some sort adjustment?

Any help or insight would be appreciated.
Its all right here. I've got a 2012 2.7 5spd 4x4 AC with a snugtop supersport canopy. I felt like the auto was constantly searching for the right gear when I test drove it so I got the manual. Lost ~.5 mpg when I put the canopy on- not a big deal.

Tank to tank I saw 19-22mpg up til the cold weather hit and the switch to winter blend. Saw a low of 16 during the coldest week of winter and 90% city miles. With the weather warming up, its been improving such that the last several tanks I've seen 18+. I expect to see a bump when we start getting summer blend again.

As for the K&N, i used to run one on my 65 nova wagon w/ 250 inline 6, headers, 4bbl. was great.... on a carbureted engine. With all the stupid electronic sensors and crap on new engines, you have to keep all contaminants out or it can mess stuff up- filter oil included. It'll only get worse the first time you clean and re-oil it.

The best thing you can do, as has been said above, is give it a little time to break in, and adjust your driving style. If you're gentle you'll see much better numbers. Hell, I managed 20.2mpg on my last tank, 100 miles of which was over snowy mountain passes at 70+mph loaded with loaded with 3 passengers and 400lbs of food and beer. Just gotta learn when more throttle isn't necessary.
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Old 03-01-2013, 12:07 PM   #13
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Thanks a lot everyone for the insight and suggestions. I'm going to give it a chance.
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Old 03-01-2013, 01:25 PM   #14
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lose the k and n and clean the maf sensor. i can get 18- 19 all day long with my 2011 v6 with a cap on there
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Old 03-01-2013, 01:28 PM   #15
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Add me to the list of people telling you to ditch the K and N and go back to paper.

I had problems with mine in the past and switched back to stock.
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Old 03-01-2013, 01:41 PM   #16
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leave it as is and just put more miles on it, it will get better in time.

Dont make anymore changes. Seriously.
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Old 03-01-2013, 01:59 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jw1983 View Post
I think that we need to have a sticky to when it comes to the MPG of Tacoma's. I figured it would keep down the majority of MPG threads that we already have on this board. It seems with every new member, there is a MPG thread that comes up. Just sayin'.
That could be said about lifts, wheels, tires, regearing, oil, oil filters, slime on oil cap, plasti-dip, gallons left after fuel light, resetting maintenance light, intake, k&n....the list goes on.
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Old 03-01-2013, 02:34 PM   #18
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[QUOTE=toyotatacomaTRD;6520680]Add me to the list of people telling you to ditch the K and N and go back to paper.


+1
From my experiences, K/N filters do more harm than good.



Nice av BTW SLAYER!!!!
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Old 03-01-2013, 02:50 PM   #19
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Short shift for best MPGs. I just got 20 mpg mixed city and hwy on my auto, v6, double cab, long bed, 4x4. Just by keeping my RPMs below 2500. Don't rev it out and don't lug the motor. PM me if you want a better explanation...
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Old 03-01-2013, 11:37 PM   #20
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If this is the first tank, expect horrible gas mileage. My first tank of gas got about 23 MPG with mostly highway. Since most of the miles are city and you have 4WD, as well as using winter gas, I'd say 15-16 MPG is about right. It should continue to improve.

One thing to check right off the bat to make sure you are getting the best MPG, is to check the tire pressures, as others have mentioned. I pumped mine to 36 psi all around.
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