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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 07-11-2005, 12:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Has anyone done anything to improve fuel economy that worked? I don't need any you drive a bmw why are you worried about gas crap. I try to conserve anything I can which is why I'm asking. I average 25-26 MPG in normal driving, 28 or so on the highway. Yesterday, I picked up up 89 octane without ethanol and got over 30MPG while doing 80-90 MPH with AC. I've tried premium but mileage didn't change. The fan delete mod is one I'm tempted to try. I'll probably make a CAI. But other than an exhaust, i can't think of much for this car.
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Old 07-11-2005, 01:51 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Ease up on the pedal? I know... stupid retort. Still, by not flooring it constantly I went from 19mpg to 22mpg city... 25mpg to 30mpg highway.
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Old 07-11-2005, 02:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The chip/shark has been known to improve gas mileage as long as you don't get on it alot because of the extra pep. It also requires 91 octane which helps also. You can use the gas additives like fuel injector cleaners and such which will help also. The CAI will also help. Most of this will probably not be that noticable unless you do it all.
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Old 07-12-2005, 07:38 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I think that if you look at my mileage figures, I'm not on it all the time. One thing I did notice recently concerns stopping. I was taught to coast to a stop in neutral. The BMW seems to shut off the fuel injectors when coasting to a stop in gear. This will probably only work with a manual, but try it. When coasting in gear watch the consumption gauge. It will jump to bove 40MPG, then after about 1-2 seconds it will pin on that side. I checked the OBC in test mode and regardless of speed at idle rpm, the engine consumes about 1liter per hour. While coasting in gear when the comsumption needle is pegged it drops to 0.0LPH!! As revs drop below 1200 or so it will fire up again. It doesn't work if you downshift though. As soon as you hit the clutch it will start the injectors. So, if I have enough speed to make it to the stop, I'll do it in gear. If not I'll do it in neutral so I don't need to use the throttle to get there.

In my Dakota it didn't make much of a difference in economy regardless if I beat on it or babied it. I have 130kMi of mileage calculations to prove it. Before ethanol blended fuel in the area it got 10% better mileage, but I can't really do anything about that.
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Old 09-25-2005, 09:57 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Question on octane: What are the regular and premium fuel octane ratings in America? In Australia they're like this:

Regular = 91 octane
Premium = 95 octane
Also, Premium = 98 octane (this one's the more readily available premium)

There is no ethanol in our petrol, though I have seem some ethanol blends introduced recently. Also my fuel cap ('96 318i) instructs not to use anything less than 95 octane.

I have a conspiracy theory that my "95 octane minimum" 318i runs perfectly well on 91 octane fuel, but that BMW in conjunction with evil oil empires have colluded to trick me into filling up with their overpriced premium fuels. I have read many times here that your fuel is 89 octane regular and 91 premium, and if this is true as it seems at face value, it would be evidence that my theory is right.

I have been testing my 318i on 91 octane for the past three tanks. So far there hasn't been any decrease in measured fuel economy and the car seems to run just as well in all other respects. I'd be happy to keep running it on 91.

Why are there minimum restrictions on the fuel octane to run in the car anyway?
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Old 09-25-2005, 12:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hootie361
Ease up on the pedal? I know... stupid retort. Still, by not flooring it constantly I went from 19mpg to 22mpg city... 25mpg to 30mpg highway.
yeah...i did the same...this really works...
I used to get 12 mpg in the city..instead of the usual 20+mpg

now i take it slow....

some tips:

1. don't gas for downhills...let gravity be your gas
2. don't race to the redlight and brake hard to stop..that is simply retarded.
3. allow for more cruise time between gasing the pedal
4. take highways/blvds/avenues over streets with stop signs/traffic lights etc...
5. take the extra load outta your trunk (not ur spare tire though)
6. take it easy on the AC...
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Old 09-26-2005, 09:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Your BMW will run on any octane fuel you put into it. The computer will adjust the engine controls accordingly. If you pussy foot the car you won't see any difference. If you want maximum performance, you will see a loss in power and economy. Lower octane fuels require retarded ignition timing resulting in lost power and efficiency. But this really only happens when the timing is advanced substantially, like high RPM and high load. Octane rating reflects the fuels resistance to self ignite under compression. High compression, high performance engines generally require high octane fuels to prevent detonation(self iginition) and to get maximum power during operation.
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Old 09-26-2005, 10:04 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guernica
Question on octane: What are the regular and premium fuel octane ratings in America? In Australia they're like this:

Regular = 91 octane
Premium = 95 octane
Also, Premium = 98 octane (this one's the more readily available premium)

There is no ethanol in our petrol, though I have seem some ethanol blends introduced recently. Also my fuel cap ('96 318i) instructs not to use anything less than 95 octane.

I have a conspiracy theory that my "95 octane minimum" 318i runs perfectly well on 91 octane fuel, but that BMW in conjunction with evil oil empires have colluded to trick me into filling up with their overpriced premium fuels. I have read many times here that your fuel is 89 octane regular and 91 premium, and if this is true as it seems at face value, it would be evidence that my theory is right.

I have been testing my 318i on 91 octane for the past three tanks. So far there hasn't been any decrease in measured fuel economy and the car seems to run just as well in all other respects. I'd be happy to keep running it on 91.

Why are there minimum restrictions on the fuel octane to run in the car anyway?
I believe that the way that your octane is calculated is slightly different. I know we have both calcualtions on the site here some where, and the calcualtion should be posted on the gas pump some where. But I believe the difference is our 89 is your 91....

The octance makes a difference in where the gas combusts. If you use lower octane than you should, the computer retards the timing giving you less power and if low enough octane is used, the computer will not be able to retartd the timing enough and the engine will begin pinging, imagine some on poping popcorn in a tinfoil bad some where near your engine (is what it sounds like) and it equals: very bad.

edit: That gains in Fuel economy that you recieve with the mods will not be that great. It will take quite a while for you to regain the cost of the mods... Just something to think about.

Last edited by thekid; 09-26-2005 at 05:20 PM.
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Old 07-17-2008, 03:15 AM   #9 (permalink)
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A K&N air filter will help some. Plus you might want to check your tire pressure. Run them on a higher pressure and your car will roll easier, therefore requiring less power.
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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A few more things that increase fuel mileage: reducing rotating mass and speed: get UUC underdrive pulleys, and get a lightweight flywheel. An exhaust won't increase gas mileage at all, unless you do the entire exhaust with long tube headers and high flow cats (or eliminated cats for the best mpg)
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Old 07-17-2008, 10:40 AM   #11 (permalink)
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that was 3years old, and why are we still talking about fuel economy
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Old 07-17-2008, 10:42 AM   #12 (permalink)
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A K&N air filter will help some.
Agreed, this is the quickest, easiest, and cheapest way to save a big of gas(and gain a wee bit of power, it's negligible though). Another great thing about them is, it'll be the last air filter you need to buy.
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:43 PM   #13 (permalink)
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that was 3years old, and why are we still talking about fuel economy
wow that post is 3 years old!!! i didn't even look at the date when it popped up on the Werkz home page
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Old 07-17-2008, 05:02 PM   #14 (permalink)
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even though its 3 years old it seems to be more relevent now then ever
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Old 07-18-2008, 10:09 AM   #15 (permalink)
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even though its 3 years old it seems to be more relevent now then ever
Tell me about it...I'm paying just a hair away from a $1.50 a liter, that's....$5.67 a gallon. "Oh, sure...here's my first born"
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