If you're wondering, “does cruise control save gas?” The short answer is yes; you can save somewhere between 7 and 14% of gas consumption using cruise control.
With the increased gas prices in 2022, people are always looking for ways to save on gas and looking for some recommendations and vehicle features to save as much as possible on gas consumption.
Most of our readers raise a very common question regarding cruise control. Does cruise control save gas?
This article will provide you with all you need to know about the benefits of utilizing cruise control and whether it helps save on gas consumption or not. Will cruise control be a good feature to utilize, considering today's skyrocketing gas prices? Let's read on for more details!
What is cruise control?
Before we dive into the details of our does cruise control save gas, it is central that we step back and explain what cruise control in the first place is. Many inexperienced drivers might not be very familiar with this system and what it does in vehicles.
Cruise control is an innovative addition to vehicles that allows you to drive at continuous speed without needing your user input. In other words, when you engage and activate the cruise control, you don't have to continue pressing on the gas pedal if you want to drive at a constant speed.
Cruise control is a system that relies on an actuator which then deals with the throttle to send the required amount of fuel to your vehicle without you keep pressing on the gas pedal. Of course, this does not only save you energy but also keeps you more focused on the road and allows you not to burn too much fuel than needed by your engine.
Does cruise control save gas?
According to recent statistics, by relying on cruise control rather than your user input, you might achieve a 7 and 14% reduction in your gas consumption. This is a lot of saving on your fuel if you think about it long term.
Studies show that any driver who relies on their foot to accelerate or decelerate is expected to consume 20% more fuel than someone else who's relying on the cruise control, especially if you're trying to achieve somewhere between 47 and 53 miles per hour versus leaving your vehicle set to 50 miles per hours at a cruise control speed.
It's important to note that cruise control's great benefits in gas savings. However, driving during a traffic Commission or probably up or downhill is not the best option.
The cruise control is not designed to deal with these situations, and if you know for sure that there is a steep hill or you're driving down hell with so much slope, then you'd better rely on your input to the gas pedal than engaging the cruise control.
The purpose of cruise control is to reduce the stress and pressure on the driver, keeping pressing on the gas pedal for long-distance driving. This way, you can enjoy the drive without feeling too much stress while driving.
When should I not use cruise control?
Despite the great features you'll achieve from engaging the cruise control, there are some critical situations where you should never engage and activate the cruise control, including:
1. Slippery roads
The first and most important situation in which you should never activate cruise control is when you're driving on slippery roads. If you decide to activate this system, you can easily allow your vehicle to spin faster than it should, and it should get you into situations where you're dealing with hydro planning. You won't be able to stop your vehicle or slow down as needed.
Therefore, engaging the cruise control on slippery roads might cause you to lose full control and your vehicle.
2. Drowsy drivers
It's critical to note that engaging the cruise control does not mean that you're driving a self-driving car. It is not auto-piloting, and if you're not feeling good or if you're feeling drowsy, you should never activate the cruise control.
Keep in mind that you cannot activate the cruise control at certain speeds, and if you're driving on city roads, cruise control will not be activated because it's not going to meet the required minimum speed, so it's working properly.
3. City roads
As we mentioned earlier, cruise control requires a specific amount of speed to be activated. So, in other words, if you're driving at a very low speed or in traffic, the cruise control will not allow you to activate it because it's not reaching that minimum speed threshold.
Therefore, if you know that you're driving in the city and going around crowded locations, you should not consider engaging in this cruise control because you're not going to get any benefits.
As we mentioned earlier, since the cruise control does not activate at certain minimum speeds, it's not surprising that automotive experts do not recommend trying to engage the cruise control when dealing with heavy traffic.
5. Winding roads
Finally, if you know that you're driving on winding roads, you should not rely on cruise control because there are many challenges for your vehicle, and engaging a system like this might not be the best idea.
What is the minimum speed for cruise control?
You might wonder if the cruise control requires a certain minimum speed threshold; what is that threshold?! Typically, automotive experts recommend that you can't engage the cruise control if you're planning 25 mph or more.
However, this does not mean that you should engage the cruise control every time you're driving higher than this speed because there are many other factors to consider. For example, if you know that it's not going to be safe to rely on cruise control, you should sit back and decide on driving your vehicle and engaging the gas pedal based on your condition.
Does cruise control save electricity?
If you're driving an electric vehicle or even any gasoline car, electricity should be something to consider in addition to gas efficiency. The good thing is that engaging the cruise control at certain optimum conditions is a good idea to save on electricity.
You will save your battery and maintain its charge and protect it from over depleting by relying on constant speed stats translated into higher fuel efficiency and less electricity consumption.
Is it better to drive with cruise control on or off?
It depends. As we mentioned earlier, there are certain situations where you cannot or are not recommended to engage the cruise control. So, for example, if you're driving on slippery roads or if you know for sure that you're going to the city roads where there's a lot of traffic, then you shouldn't activate the cruise control.
On the other hand, if you know that you are going for a long distance and the speed is not going to be changing or fluctuate frequently, then relying on cruise control would be a great idea that will help you save on fuel and reduce the pressure on you as a driver.
Does cruise control hurt your car?
Interestingly, activating the cruise control never hurts your car. On the contrary, as automotive experts mentioned, if you activate the cruise control at the right location and in the right situation, you can benefit your vehicle and prevent the early winter that could happen from the constant pressing on the gas pedal or the wrong fuel consumption beyond what your vehicle needs.
What are the disadvantages of cruise control?
As we mentioned earlier, there are many advantages to engaging the cruise control at the perfect time. However, there are some disadvantages that you might deal with. These disadvantages do not necessarily mean something wrong with the vehicle itself, but it's more about who will use this feature and during what time.
One of the common disadvantages of cruise control is that many drivers might rely on this feature as a safety feature which seems to them like a self-driving car or a self-pilot. But unfortunately, this leads to a significant car crash that does not only impact the driver himself but also it could risk the life of other people driving on the same road.
Also, even if you're not drowsy, relying on this feature and feel that you are saving all your vehicles and taking care of the world is not a good idea. In other words, you might get more comfortable being distracted and looking at your phone or outside the vehicle.
Keep in mind that cruise control is not a self-driving car again. It doesn't mean that you will leave full control of your vehicle care. You still need to hold on to the steering wheel and disengage this feature when you feel that you need to change lanes because it's not going to be super useful then.
Long story short, you need to take full advantage of the cruise control save on gas but at the same time you must be mindful about when to engage it and when not to because of the potential negative consequences you might encounter.
Can cruise control cause problems?
Cruise control does not cause immediate problems to your vehicle every time you engage it. However, if this system is not working properly, it can easily do lots of problems and dangerous situations that might impact your safety.
That's why as you get close to your long-distance trip, you must quickly inspect your cruise control and ensure that it's working properly so you don't risk your life or the lives of other people driving around you.
We're all now dealing with these skyrocketing increases in fuel prices, and we must learn one thing about ways to save on fuel. Other than the recommendations by automotive experts from certain habits to save on fuel, you can utilize certain features in your vehicle that allows you to save a good amount of fuel down the road.
One of the very common questions that we received from our readers is, does cruise control save gas? According to experts, you will achieve between 7 and 14% of gas consumption reduction if you activate the cruise control at the right situation.
If you feel that your car has lots of problems and you're unable to activate the cruise control on time, it might be the perfect time to sell your vehicle instead of wasting your time, effort, and money, especially if it needs so many repairs.
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