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Old 06-22-2008, 11:20 AM   #1
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I am really stumped. Here's why. Last year was my first year with our motorhome. I was thrilled with the Workhorse W20 chassis. On all our trips, it performed flawlessly. When we bought the unit, one of my first tweaks was adding a ScanGauge II, since I am sorta a 'gotta scan the gauges regularly' kinda driver.

Last year, per the ScanGauge, I was able to get as much as 10 mpg on a select trip or two if really trying to baby the throttle. I was amazed. In generl driving, I was between 8 and 9 mpg, mostly hugging the 9mpg side.

After storing our unit over the winter, we've made made 4 shortish weekend trips. Weirdly, I can't seem to get anything over 7 mpg this year! Some of these have been the same exact trips as last year when I was tickling 9 mpg.

Nothing has changed on the coach. My fluids are always at about the same level and I always travel with empty holding tanks. Nothing was added to the load to increase weight.

I am borderline thinking I'm nutz since I can't imagine such a dramatic change after sitting over the winter. About the only thing I can think of is that last year, I likely put mid-range or premium gas in... this year, I've been staying on the cheapo pump. Could a few points of octane make this big of a difference?

Any thoughts or guidance would be appreciated.
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:20 AM   #2
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I am really stumped. Here's why. Last year was my first year with our motorhome. I was thrilled with the Workhorse W20 chassis. On all our trips, it performed flawlessly. When we bought the unit, one of my first tweaks was adding a ScanGauge II, since I am sorta a 'gotta scan the gauges regularly' kinda driver.

Last year, per the ScanGauge, I was able to get as much as 10 mpg on a select trip or two if really trying to baby the throttle. I was amazed. In generl driving, I was between 8 and 9 mpg, mostly hugging the 9mpg side.

After storing our unit over the winter, we've made made 4 shortish weekend trips. Weirdly, I can't seem to get anything over 7 mpg this year! Some of these have been the same exact trips as last year when I was tickling 9 mpg.

Nothing has changed on the coach. My fluids are always at about the same level and I always travel with empty holding tanks. Nothing was added to the load to increase weight.

I am borderline thinking I'm nutz since I can't imagine such a dramatic change after sitting over the winter. About the only thing I can think of is that last year, I likely put mid-range or premium gas in... this year, I've been staying on the cheapo pump. Could a few points of octane make this big of a difference?

Any thoughts or guidance would be appreciated.
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:23 AM   #3
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Just FYI....premium gas will not give you better MPG.....you ECM will compensate for the higher octane.
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:34 AM   #4
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Oh yeah.. not sure if it matters, but I put the unit into hibernation last fall with 6600 miles on the odo. We're at about 7000 now.
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:52 AM   #5
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Were you running 100% gasoline last year and possibly some with corn (ethanol) in it now. You will see a reduction in MPG with the mixture.

Ken
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:32 PM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by TXiceman:
Were you running 100% gasoline last year and possibly some with corn (ethanol) in it now. You will see a reduction in MPG with the mixture. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>That's what I was thinking!
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:35 PM   #7
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by TXiceman:
Were you running 100% gasoline last year and possibly some with corn (ethanol) in it now. You will see a reduction in MPG with the mixture.

Ken </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

BINGO! And did you run your generator during the Winter?
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:50 PM   #8
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Have you checked for possible air flow restrictions that could have occured over the winter?
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Old 06-22-2008, 05:00 PM   #9
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How are you figuring the mileage, with pencil and paper, or with the Scan guage? 9-10 MPG is pretty good mileage. I have a 32 footer on a W-22, and lifetime mileage is about 7.78 MPG. Good point has been made concerning gasoline containing alcohol, I first used some in Iowa about 4 years ago, and had a noticible reduction in power, and about 1 MPG less fuel mileage. I purchased fuel on the Oregon coast just this month that contained 10 percent alcohol with the same results.

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Old 06-22-2008, 06:05 PM   #10
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i have been adding a small amount of acetone (3oz per 10 gallons) to reg gas with 10% ethanol. it doesn't work as well with 10% ethanol. in my 02 altima v6 it is good for 1.5 mpg improvement figured with pencil and paper over 2 years. don't know how well it is going to work in my moho yet. google "acetone as a fuel additive" for more info. the simple answer to how it works is that it reduces the surface tension of fuel, both gas a diesel, allowing it to vaporize better. no ill effects in my altima.
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Old 06-22-2008, 06:18 PM   #11
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Thanks for the thoughts.

For the question on the generator; no, I didn't run it in the winter. Instead, I fogged it good when I stored it. I have run the generator a couple times under load since bringing it out of storage. Curious as to what effect running this over the winter would have???

Oh... Yeah, when I stored last fall I put in a 75 gallon bottle of Sta-Bil.

Gotta admit to being pretty dumb around the pump.. I just pull up and pump (and pay and pay and pay!). Are most places using Ethanol now? Would the pump be marked?
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Old 06-22-2008, 06:31 PM   #12
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Exercising the generator is not to protect the engine. It is to drive accumulated moisture out of the generator windings. You can't do that by fogging the cylinders.

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Old 06-22-2008, 06:34 PM   #13
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by DAN L:
.. don't know how well it is going to work in my moho yet. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>DAN L. Out of warranty and all that I would say good luck with this project however Workhorse strongly recommends against adding any additives into the fuel system.

Dry gas or Sta-Bil appears to be the only 2 additives that I have run across that have been of any use.
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Old 06-22-2008, 06:44 PM   #14
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Tom,

thanks for the insights on the generator. I have not heard that at all, ever. Hope I didn't hose up my set by not taking care of it. I guess I now know better for next year.

Mike
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