There are a few ways that you can get better fuel economy while towing a caravan to reduce your costs at the fuel pump.
- Ensure that your load is balanced. When you hitch up your caravan, you want to ensure that your load is balanced on the vehicle. Too much weight on the back of the vehicle will lift up the front wheels and add to your fuel costs – due to increased drag on rear wheels. A weight distribution hitch helps to keep the load distributed correctly on the wheels so your tow vehicle can do it’s job most efficiently.
- Make sure the caravan brakes aren’t dragging. Regular, professional maintenance will ensure your brakes are adjusted correctly.
- Reduce your highway speed. Driving at 90 or 95klm/hour instead of 100 or 110 klm/hour will reduce your fuel consumption. If you are holding up traffic by going slower than the speed limit then it is good ettiquette to pull over and let the traffic pass you. (Drag on your rig is proportional to the square of your speed. 2x speed = 4x higher wind resistance)
- The size of the caravan matters. An off-road caravan that sits higher than an on-road or pop-top caravan will create more wind resistance and will require more fuel to tow. If you don’t travel off-road then an on-road caravan is an economical choice.
- Check your tyre pressure. Keeping your tyres inflated correctly can have a considerable impact on your fuel consumption on long trips. For more information on how to check your tyres read our article here.
- Reducing the weight in the caravan will reduce your fuel costs:
- Consider your trip and decide whether it is worthwhile leaving some accessories at home eg do you need the annexe or would an awning shade do the job.
- Empty grey water tanks before you leave.
- If you can fill up water tanks at your destination, there is no point carrying any more than the minimum required.
- When you need to replace your batteries consider lithium batteries. Lithium batteries weigh about a quarter of the weight of a pair of lead acid batteries – which weigh about 70kg.
Getting better fuel economy while towing may require just a few small adjustments to reduce your costs. The team at the RV Service Centre can provide assistance with balancing the load of your caravan or maintenance on your brakes. Give us a call to book your service or visit our showroom.