Gas milage towing my side by side

Discussion in 'Vehicles, Boats, Campers, & ATVs' started by sam, Sep 18, 2017.

  1. sam

    sam Grand Member<br>2007 Photo Contest Winner<br>

    I have towed my Honda Pioneer 500 a lot of miles, round trips to Colorado are 2000 miles, biweekly trips to our hunting lease is 150 miles. It's always amazed me that my F-150 will get 20 to 22 mpg empty. I got 15.6 mpg pulling a 22 foot Stratos bass boat, with a 200 Evinrude, on a tandem trailer at freeway speeds going to northern Minnesota and back this Spring, but when I hook up to my 14 foot single axle trailer and put the 500 on it I get 12 to 13 mpg. A friend of mine, I go to Colorado with, pulled it with his Chevy 2500 diesel and it killed the mileage on his rig about the same percentage, too. The boat outweighs the 500 by a lot, specially full of all our gear like is on the trips to Minnesota. I've tried it with the windshield and rear glass out and it made no difference in the mileage. I've loaded it backwards and still no improvement in the mileage. I've had an idea to try some kind of reflector on the front, for a while now, but never got around to trying it. Yesterday I wanted to bring a lightweight hollow core door home from the lease, so I strapped it on the front of the 500.


    Went from 12.5 mph, on the crooked hilly two lane road I've driven a 100 times, to 15.2 mpg. When I got on the freeway for a few miles the mpg increased to 15.5. I've never got over 13 mpg before, usually closer to 12. I going to get a sheet of 1/4 or 3/8 plywood and rip some 2x2s out of some light weight spruce and build one that reaches all the way to the top of the cab of the 500 and see how it goes.
    QuailRidge likes this.
  2. claytonsdad

    claytonsdad Well-Known Member

    Mine always killed my gas mileage about like that as well. I tried the same things you've tried, with about the same results. You may be onto something with that deflector idea. I hope it works out well for you. Let us know once you get a chance to try it.
    brushcreek and ksf04001 like this.

  3. Saltydog

    Saltydog Well-Known Member

    Ash Flat
    I bet that'll work!
    Amazing what streamlining can accomplish....
  4. Arkie_3_fan

    Arkie_3_fan Well-Known Member

    I know pulling a Ranger 800 on a 16' tandem axle trailer killed my mileage.
    Think my Tacoma ended up getting around 9mpg pulling it.
  5. betweenthecadrons

    betweenthecadrons Well-Known Member

    My wife has a 12' single axle cargo trailer that she uses for her business fairly often. The trailer is light when empty. MPG drops tremendously when pulling the trailer. It catches A LOT of air. She can pack it full and the MPG will stay about the same. Wind drag makes a big difference in MPG
  6. JohnnieWalker

    JohnnieWalker Well-Known Member

    Man if you get that wind block up over the roof you'll probably gain a quarter of a tank going back and forth to your lease. Seriously though, my GMC takes a mpg nose dive when I hook up to my ranger too. I always figured it was the drag. Good info. Thanks for sharing. Post up what you build and how well it works after a trial run.
  7. buck720

    buck720 Well-Known Member

    I took the front windshield off my rhino and it made a tremendous difference.
    JB Weld likes this.
  8. Buck-Ridge

    Buck-Ridge Well-Known Member

    That should help with the drag.