Newbie question

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Fuel Economy' started by KathB, May 23, 2011.

  1. KathB

    KathB New Member

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    I have had my Prius for almost two weeks. Very happy with it. I have been tracking my daily mpg. In the eco mode I was getting between 51-54. The last few trips I did not use any mode. I am getting 53-56.7 (highest day so far). My comute is around 25 miles one way. The first 18 is rural and the last 7 or so is stop and go, lots of lights.

    Is it "normal" to get better mileage without using any of the modes?
     
  2. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    Despite the nomenclature, the modes don't affect the MPG too much. Mostly they adjust the sensitivity of the gas pedal (i.e. how the pedal position translates in demand).

    The mileage could be going up for a number of other reasons: summer gas, warmth, improved driver ability, engine break in, etc.

    Don't worry about it for now.
     
  3. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    It's not unusual for a new Prius driver. The problem is one of efficiency. Most new Prius drivers assume the best mileage comes from driving like a granny, but in fact you get better efficiency from brisk acceleration, assuming you don't have to immediately stop. Driving in ECO mode tends to limit brisk acceleration because you need to apply more pedal pressure to get it.

    For good mileage, try to time the lights, avoid using the brakes, watch your speed, and accelerate briskly. By briskly I mean the maximum acceleration you can get without using battery power.

    Tom
     
  4. BrettS

    BrettS Active Member

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    A lot of it really depends on how you drive, and over the next few weeks as you get used to the Prius you'll find that your economy continues to improve a bit.

    The Eco mode does two things... it makes the air conditioner a bit more efficient, but it sacrifices the comfort level slightly to do so... it will take a little longer to cool down the car on hot days and it lets the interior temperature fluctuate a bit more than it does when the car is not in eco mode.

    It also changes the way the gas pedal responds... in Eco mode you need to push the pedal down farther to accelerate at the same rate as you would without any mode. Since gradual acceleration can help with fuel economy this can help to make the car more effecient. If you tend to accelerate more gradually no matter which mode you're in then eco mode probably won't make much of a difference for you.
     
  5. TheBlueWedge

    TheBlueWedge New Member

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    This. I put my Prius in ECO mode instantly after buying it, accelerated slowly, kept it in the all electric range as much as possible, and wondered why in the heck I wasn't getting the kind of numbers people on here seem to get. After a month or so, I took it off of ECO mode and turned off the HSI so I wasn't constantly worrying about what range I was in, and just drove the darn thing -- and my MPGs went way up. Until you get a good feel for P&G and other techniques like that, it's probably a good idea to just drive it without thinking too much and let the technology do the work for you. Just my 2 cents.
     
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  6. KathB

    KathB New Member

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    Thanks for all the replies. I start off every morning with the intention of just driving it. Usually looking at the dash in under five minutes. Fun car!
     
  7. Old Bald Guy

    Old Bald Guy Old Bald Guy

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    Just one rule for newbies in a Prius. Just drive it!

    For the first 10,000 miles, don't worry a lot about mileage. Every car I have ever driven over the last 45 years started somewhere and kept improving for those first 5,000 to 10,000 miles. You get used to the car. The motor, tires, brakes, suspension, and more break in with use. They get better with use.

    Don't worry about the little things after only a few days of driving. You will eventually learn that temperature might have more effect on your mileage than how you drive right now. The golden zone for the Prius is for the weather to be between 50 to 75 degrees. Go much above or below that weatherwise, and your mileage will drop. Driving in the rain or snow will drop your mileage. 45 MPH headwinds will REALLY drop your mileage. And 45 MPH tailwinds will REALLY boost it.
     
  8. offroader

    offroader Junior Member

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    This might be a stupid question but my Prius has EV / Echo / Power Mode how do you get it into Normal mode?
     
  9. xpcman

    xpcman Senior Member

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    push the button again and it cancels ECO or Power and puts you into Normal.
     
  10. bhodis

    bhodis Junior Member

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    Has any one had issues with the front seats on a 2011? I have had both driver and passenger front lower covers replaced and now the same problem. It bulges out on one side from the stitched area.

    I am ready to have them replace both entire seats.
     
  11. vday

    vday Member

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    Make sure you have nothing lit up on the screen display and then you are in normal
     
  12. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    And note a possible point of confusion between two different ECO labels. The 'ECO' condition on the HSI display, which comes and goes with the gas pedal, is not the same as ECO mode on the dashboard, which toggles on and off only when you press the ECO button.
     
  13. Mendy404

    Mendy404 New Member

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    Exactly right MPG does not depend on the modes. Someone I knew said that Prius is using more gas when he is in eco mode. Quite confusing , Cannot recall the exact reason. But i think it has something to do when voltage balancing between the cells.
     
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