The beginning of this month I bought a soft tonneau cover for my 97
Nissan PU, 2.4 l, 4 cyl FI, 62,500 miles. He's a good old boy and looks
almost as good as when he was new. I buy him a present every once in a
while. Last time it was a cat-back dual exhaust, and the time before
that, a keyless entry system.
When I installed the cover, I had about 3/4ths of a tank of gas left.
Since driving it with the cover on, it seemed that my trip odometer was
getting a higher reading compared to my gas gauge than before. I usually
traveled 50 miles between the 1/4 markings on the gas gauge, winding up
with about 190 miles with about an 1/8th tank of gas left when I refill
it. I got to 212 miles with about an 1/8th tank left. When I filled the
tank yesterday and made the MPG calculations from my last fill up, it
seems that I was getting 18.34 MPG. I rarely put more than 11-12 gallons
in the 15-7/8 gallon tank. This time, it was 11.595 gallons.
Before the cover was installed, I was averaging around 16.5 MPG. The
last time I filled up before the cover, I got 16.62 MPG. I haven't
changed my driving habits despite the rising gas prices, or made any
long trips, so it may be aerodynamics.
The next time I fill up, the MPG will be calculated with having the
cover on for the entire period between fill ups, so we'll see what develops.
Watch the mpg drop and burst my balloon! :-)
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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