My fuel depletes faster when my fuel gauge is near empty?
Have you ever noticed that your fuel burns faster once it has fallen well below half tank? Well, if you feel
that is true, your fuel gauge played that prank on you and it worked.
Your engine uses the same amount of fuel for the same type of driving regardless of what your fuel
gauge shows. It’s the fuel gauge that gives you the impression that the second half goes faster than the
first half. Some folks even tell you that it is because your fuel pump is doing harder work to suck in the
fuel – nothing can be farther from the truth.
Some manufacturers purposely set their fuel gauges so that the gauge moves slower from full to 1/2
tank on the gauge than it does for 1/2 to empty on the gauge. You may have noticed that several fuel
gauges once full and in use seem to not want to leave the ‘full’ area after you have covered some
considerable distances. Several cars hang on to full for 2 or 3 gallons already used before moving off of
full. Most people fill up their tank around the time it hits 1/4 tank left. By showing 1/2 tank gone on the
fuel gauge when 3/5 tank is gone, it gives you, the owner of the car the impression that this car is
getting better mileage than it really is. Some psychology to make you feel good about your car.
On some cars, it’s the shape of the tanks that give that effect. This is more prevalent on motorcycles
where tank shapes are molded to fit into odd spaces. Most cars have square or rectangular tanks which
are the easiest to get an accurate fuel level reading from. Those with odd shaped tanks may have fuel
level sensors that aren’t exactly accurate.