Do these products really improve fuel economy? (Petro-M... Do these products really improve fuel economy? (Petro-Mag, YouTube).
With gas prices above $3.50 a gallon, companies which manufacture "fuel saving" devices are thriving. These companies are vying for the motoring public's dollars and preying on their ignorance.

Whenever the price of gas goes up, I receive hundreds of e-mail inquiries about such devices. So let's take a close scrutinizing look at some of these "technologies" to see if there's any validity here.

Magnetized products are anything but True North

Such devices wrap around the fuel line just prior to fuel inlet. The claims of increased fuel economy are anywhere from 5% to 20% (usually determined by their customers' testimonies).

Petro-Mag is one of the most popular, and the company claims its product works the same way cholesterol medicine works on your heart: By preventing gasoline from clogging up fuel lines. They claim the fuel activator lasts for the life of the engine.

Sounds pretty impressive, huh? But the Environmental Protection Agency says it doesn't work. They tested several products, like Petro-Mizer, Polarion-X, Super-Mag Fuel Extender, Wickliff Polarizer and others. There was absolutely no improvement in fuel economy, the EPA says.



Air swirling technology is bunk

Air swirling technology is installed in the air intake just prior to the engine throttle. In theory, it works by creating a small vortex of air, resulting in better atomization of the fuel droplets in the air/fuel mixture, making the combustion process more efficient.

One of the most popular is the Tornado Fuel Saver. That device claims to increase fuel economy from 7% to 28%, and also boasts of increasing horsepower by 4 hp to 13 hp. And they claim it takes 2 to 5 minutes to install.

Vince Ciulla, a nationally noted auto expert, says he's been testing the Tornado for the past three months. He saw increases of .1 mpg, .2 mpg and in one instance, fuel economy dropped by .4 mpg.

"So much for the fuel economy increase," he said.

There was also zero increase in horsepower, even though drivers said their cars felt more powerful. Ciulla hooked the cars up to dynamometers to test the power, and came up empty.

"The feel of increased power is what the consumer expects to feel," he said. "So it is a matter of perception."

PCV "air bleed" technology only bleeds your wallet

Products like the Ram-Jet Fuel Saver claim that by bleeding air into the engine, they break down corrosive particles that could dirty engines, and feed extra air into the engine whenever it's working hard. There are others like ADAKS Vacuum Breaker Air Bleed, Auto-Miser, Ball-Matic Air Bleed, Grancor Air Computer, and Hot Tip.

They've all been tested by the EPA, and found to be useless.

Fuel additives

These companies claim that by adding their product to the fuel tank, you will realize fuel mileage savings. Some claim to increase fuel octane and increase fuel efficiency by making engines burn cleaner. You use them by adding it to the fuel tank before filling up.

The EPA has also tested a bunch of these, like Bycosin, El-5 Fuel Additive, and Dyno-Tab Fuel Booster, and found they do nothing.

There are many other "technologies" out there that claim similar fuel mileage increases. Among them are:

Vapor Bleed Devices: These are similar to the air bleed devices (PCV), except that induced air is bubbled through a container of a water and anti-freeze mixture, usually located in the engine compartment.

Ignition Devices: These devices are attached to the ignition system or are used to replace original equipment or parts.

Fuel Line Heaters: These devices heat the fuel before it enters the fuel delivery system. Usually the fuel is heated by the hot engine coolant or by the exhaust or electrical system.

Metallic Fuel Line Devices: These devices contain several dissimilar metals that are installed in the fuel line and supposedly cause ionization of the fuel (similar in theory to the magnetic fuel saving devices.)

Oils and Oil Additives: These materials are usually poured into the crankcase.

All of these 'fuel-savers' have been tested by the EPA and have been found to be of no benefit to MPG.


Bottom line on what you SHOULD do and buy:

* Keep your engine properly tuned for maximum fuel mileage efficiency

* Keep your tires properly inflated to reduce rolling resistance and thus engine work

* Modify your driving habits if you are given to "laying" on the gas pedal

* Consolidate your errands so that you run them in one fell swoop instead of running "to and fro" about the town wasting gas

* Consider buying a fuel efficient vehicle in the first place.


'Til next time ... Keep Rollin'


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  • 156 Comments
      Aphidavis
      • 3 Years Ago
      If any of those gadgets really worked they would not have to advertise them. The news media would do that for them and the automobile manufacturers would keep them in business.
      • 3 Years Ago
      OK, so the fuel-saving gadgets don't work. Here is something that really does work. I know because I've tried it and it is still working every month. It doesn't save you gas, it saves you gas MONEY. 50% of it in fact. Every month! I've made my investment back in less than 10 months. I pay around $1.70 a gallon for gas. Yes, this is one thing out there that works, and works good. More and more people are getting in on this monthly gas rebate program daily. Free information about this is available at: www.mygasrebate.com If you choose to pass on this great opportunity, you lose your right to complain about high gas prices.
      geddisleroy
      • 3 Years Ago
      I have a Chevy silverodo 1500 that would get 20 -22 mpg before they started adding alcohol to the gas, now I am lucky if I get 16 mpg, I dont see where we are saving anything , might be putting money into the freinds of politisions.
        adika3z
        • 3 Years Ago
        @geddisleroy
        try add gas treatment in a gas hole and pour it.. will help little more MPG
      montoyabrent85
      • 3 Years Ago
      I just paid $22.87 for an iPad2-64GB and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $675 which only cost me $62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, PennyOrder.com
      • 3 Years Ago
      OK, so the fuel-saving gadgets don't work. Here is something that really does work. I know because I've tried it and it is still working every month. It doesn't save you gas, it saves you gas MONEY. 50% of it in fact. Every month! I've made my investment back in less than 10 months. I pay around $1.70 a gallon for gas. Yes, this is one thing out there that works, and works good. More and more people are getting in on this monthly gas rebate program daily. Free information about this is available at: www.mygasrebate.com If you choose to pass on this great opportunity, you lose your right to complain about high gas prices.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Gas-saving gizmos may not work, but I know for a fact this does. It's a gas rebate program that returns 50% of the money you spend on gas every month. It may not extend your mileage, but sure does extend your driving distance per dollar. Find out free at: www.mygasrebate.com
      fidwriter
      • 3 Years Ago
      How about drilling for the oil that we HAVE! The cost would go down dramatically, it's called "Supply & Demand. " and it WORKS. We would not only drive down the cost oil/gas, but we would put 100,000 people back to work! I will not be liked by the PC crowd or envioromental whackos and I really don't care!
      R L Baker
      • 3 Years Ago
      For shor daily comutes look at the following with an open mind. WWW.flexxy.com/zero-polution-automobile.htm
      LL
      • 3 Years Ago
      My daughter turned 16 last month and there was just no way we could afford to add her to our existing car insurance policy. I started shopping around for new car insurance and found this site: ( http://tinyurl.com/InsuranceTip ) I just put in my ZIP code and received four quotes instantly after filling out the form. By comparing rates we were actually able to include my daughter in our new policy and not pay anymore per month for car insurance than we were originally paying for just me and my wife!
      • 3 Years Ago
      I've used a fuel additive from a company called Syntek Global for more than 2 years. It took me from 19 mpg to 24.4 and I fill up one less time each month saving me over 60 bucks. Some things do work. Not everything is a scam.
      Laurel
      • 3 Years Ago
      I just drive very conservatively and go 55 on the highway. I get 20-40% better fuel economy than rated. I'm well known for getting some ridiculous fuel mileage. For example, I recently bought a 2012 Ford Focus SE with the 5spd manual, which is advertised as getting 40mpg. I have put 4K miles on it since I bought it and my average fuel economy so far is 51.4 mpg. Other than run 35 psi in the tires I have done nothing to the car. It is a complete result of driving for fuel mileage. Why not try that? It's free!
      • 3 Years Ago
      How about fuel injection cleaner, I use STP ( black bottle ) does it work? Tony
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