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jim crowl
As I travel I find many towns where gas price varies as much as 62 cents per gallon (highest I've experienced-seen this week) between stations. It always wonder if people see the signs when I see someone filling up at a station that is across the street from another station which is 30 cents cheaper. Both are major brands too.

As I travel over 25,000 miles per year, some tips that I have found:
1) Use gas buddy and the online gas price resources
2) Use membership stations, such as Sam's club, Costco etc.
3) Use truck stops, and get their RV discount card if they have one. Pilot for example will give you an RV card good for 2 cents off per gallon at Pilot and Flying J.
4) Ask clerks who has the best gas prices in town.
5) Use your GPS device to look up upcoming stations. Some brands tend to have better pricing than others. I have found where several stations are together prices are usually (but not always) better than where there is only one station.
6) When prices are going up fill up. When prices are going down don't fill up if you don't plan to travel a lot.
7) Stations a block or two into a city (used by locals) are often 20-30 cents cheaper than ones on the freeway. I don't mean drive all over town, just look down the street.
8) Keep an eye on prices as you drive, and don't get into a situation where you are almost empty and forced to buy. I've planned to gas up in a town, and found all 3 stations with high prices, so driven on to the next town, and saved 30 cents a gallon. Of course there are towns where every station is the same price and you know the fuel distributors must have coffee together!
9) Remember lessons from previous trips. An example: for years at the main Needles off-ramp (after driving through the desert with no stations for a couple hours) stations have been about 50 cents a gallon higher than ones a few blocks away.
Perhaps this sounds cheap, but it sure adds up when on a limited budget. Every time I save a few dollars in gas I say, there is $ that can use towards a special lunch etc.
Texasrvers
Good tips. Now can someone explain why the cheapest gas always seems to be at stations/convenience stores that do not have good access for an RV?
joez
QUOTE
As I travel over 25,000 miles per year


Wow, you must either love to drive or your work requires it. At 50 miles per hour you are spending 500 hours or so behind the wheel each year. I agree that in your case it is probably worth the effort to scout gas price savings. For most of us, however, I think we have become a bit obsessive about mileage and price per gallon of fuel. We spent 229 days out in the motorhome this year and we barely drove 3,000 miles. Even considering miles on our towd (and a 2nd car) any cost savings would have to be a lot more than a few cents per gallon to justify more than a casual effort to find the lowest price per gallon. For us, fuel stops are done where we can easily get in and out and not have to drive far from our planned route. Safe travels.
RetiredFA
QUOTE(jim crowl @ Nov 1 2010, 07:41 AM) *


As I travel over 25,000 miles per year, some tips that I have found:
6) When prices are going up fill up. When prices are going down don't fill up if you don't plan to travel a lot.



Disagree to a point. I usually follow this philosophy, but regardless of whether or not prices are going up or down, if you are coming home from a trip and your RV won't be used for a LONG time, then you SHOULD fill up. I read, or heard somewhere, that leaving your RV partially full for too long can lead to condensation building up, don't remember if this is a summer or winter problem or all year problem. Condensation is bad for the gas tank!

If I'm wrong and this is just an "old wives tale" (I hate that phrase!) then I stand corrected.

But the other tips are good!

ALso, you gotta watch the octane level. In some states (Colorado, Utah, parts of Idaho), Octane levels are down to 85. Then, I went through some states that had 87 and 89 and for some CRAZY reason 89 was cheaper than 87 so I got it instead of the 87. But I won't buy 85 octane cuz my owners manual says minimum 87.

JJ

JJ
nedmtnman
QUOTE(DXSMac @ Nov 1 2010, 06:47 PM) *

Disagree to a point. I usually follow this philosophy, but regardless of whether or not prices are going up or down, if you are coming home from a trip and your RV won't be used for a LONG time, then you SHOULD fill up. I read, or heard somewhere, that leaving your RV partially full for too long can lead to condensation building up, don't remember if this is a summer or winter problem or all year problem. Condensation is bad for the gas tank!

If I'm wrong and this is just an "old wives tale" (I hate that phrase!) then I stand corrected.

But the other tips are good!

ALso, you gotta watch the octane level. In some states (Colorado, Utah, parts of Idaho), Octane levels are down to 85. Then, I went through some states that had 87 and 89 and for some CRAZY reason 89 was cheaper than 87 so I got it instead of the 87. But I won't buy 85 octane cuz my owners manual says minimum 87.

JJ

JJ


The reason for the low octane levels is at higher altitudes you don't need the high octane ratings to prevent preignition. Yes, keep the tank full as gasoline has a low boiling point and as a liquid evaporates it removes heat and the cool tank condensates the moisture in the air.
Frank Henn
Keeping the gas tank filled was more important in the past because the gas tanks were made out of metal and condensation got into them and caused a water problem, and later rust and/or a flaking problem. Not so important to day because the gas tanks are made out of a plastic Thus there is no metal for the condensation to form into water
RLM
All very good tips which I also do. I would add to the list that one could also use a credit card that provides 3-5 percent cash back. I do agree that it may not be worth the effort if one is only driving 3000 miles. But in my case I put 10K/yr on the MH. If, by shopping around and getting cash back, I can save at least 10 % (most of the time itís higher) thatís an extra tank for the MH or 5 tanks for the toad.

QUOTE(DXSMac @ Nov 1 2010, 06:47 PM) *

Then, I went through some states that had 87 and 89 and for some CRAZY reason 89 was cheaper than 87 so I got it instead of the 87. But I won't buy 85 octane cuz my owners manual says minimum 87. JJ


The reason is that in some states it isn't mandatory that all gasoline contain ethanol. So in those states it will be added to 89 octane and then priced less than 87. I found that in many midwest states this year.
Fitzjohnfan
A couple of other tips:
I don't know how fast you drive, but keep your speed 65mph or lower. Just because they raised the speed limits a few years ago, doesn't mean you have to drive the limit. FMC magazine did a test a year ago where they drove a loop highway using different conditions. At 75 MPH, I think their test rig got about 6 mpg
at 65mph I think the mileage increased to about 8.5 mph, which is a significant increase.
They also tried some device on the back of the motorhome that "broke up the wind resistance" and gave them another 1/2 mpg.

Also, try to drive as light as possible. If you know you will be stopping at an RV park with hookups that night, you may want to drain most of your fresh water before the trip. Also remove any unneeded items from the coach.

Finally, make sure your tires are inflated to the proper rating for your tires and the weight of your coach. The only way you will do this will be to weigh the coach on each corner, then look up the inflation tables from the manufacturer of your tires. You don't always inflate to the maximum PSI stamped on the tire.
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