RVs are fantastic as they let you take your “home” on the road. Being in an RV is like being on a vacation and at home at the same time. That said, to get away from your actual home, your RV needs to have fuel inside of it, and yes, fuel can be expensive. So, how many miles per gallon does an RV get?
Average Fuel Efficiency of RVs
RVs have come a very long way in the past years, and this goes for fuel efficiency too. Now, these are big machines, so they do use a good deal of gas, but that said, there have been some big improvements made over the years.
In terms of the miles per gallon your RV will get, it is going to depend on the size and class of RV you have. There are three main classes of RVs, so let’s talk about the fuel efficiency of each.
Class A RVs are often well over 20,000 pounds and can be as long as 40 feet. These are the largest of all RVs out there, and they do use lots of fuel. On average, an RV of this size will get between 7 and 10 miles per gallon. Sure, these are luxury RVs with all the bells and whistles, but they are absolutely not the most fuel efficient models.
Class B motorhomes or RVs, often known as van campers, are quite a bit smaller. They usually top out at around 22 feet in length and usually don’t weight more than 15,000 pounds.
They can come with a lot of amenities, so they are a great option if you want something fancy, like a class A RV, but also want something a bit smaller. This type of RV, due to the variety to choose from, may get anywhere from 10 to 25 miles per gallon.
Class C motorhomes are a good mid-size option, and they can be up to 35 feet long and weigh a significant amount more than class B motorhomes. These models can often tow cars as well. However, keep in mind that due to their fairly large size, you usually won’t get more than 12 miles per gallon out of them.
How To Increase RV Miles Per Gallon
As you can tell, RVs don’t exactly have the best mileage per gallon of fuel. However, with that said, there are some methods to use to increase your overall fuel efficiency.
Both gas and diesel can be quite pricey, especially when you need a lot of it for traveling long distances. Here are some ways you can help to increase the fuel efficiency of your RV.
This one might be a bit obvious, but simply put, the more your RV is carrying, the less fuel efficient it will be. There are some things that you simply cannot leave home without. However, that said, the lighter your pack and less loaded the RV, the less fuel it will need to move.
The heavier your RV is, the more fuel it will require. So, to use as little fuel as possible, only bring along what you need.
Something which many people may not know is that erratic driving eats through fuel. In other words, if you really put the pedal to the metal every time you accelerate, then brake really hard, then accelerate hard again, you will use a lot more fuel.
The simple fact is that the faster and more often you accelerate, the more fuel you will use. So, accelerate slowly, and once you get up to speed, try and stay there without any fluctuations. Accelerating always uses more fuel than simply maintaining speed.
Something that will decrease fuel efficiency in your RV is if the tires are not properly inflated. Generally speaking, while over-inflation is not great, it should not affect fuel efficiency all too much.
However, if the tires on your RV are underinflated, it will take a lot more fuel to accelerate and keep moving. So, you always want to check your owner’s manual for the PSI rating for the tires, and always ensure that they are properly inflated.
Another aspect which can make a big difference in terms of miles per gallon is the terrain itself. Now, you might not always have a choice in terms of the terrain; sometimes there is rough ground to be covered and hills to be climbed.
However, if you can choose between driving 5 miles on straight and flat terrain or just 2 miles on roughly and hilly terrain, if saving fuel is your goal, the longer but smoother drive is the one you want to take. The smoother the drive, the less fuel you will consume.
AC And Heating
The other aspect to help you save fuel in your RV travels is to only use the AC or heating when needed. Running the heat or AC will both use gas. Moreover, if you are using appliances in your RV that are running off the gas and batteries, this will use fuel as well. So, if you are hot, instead of pumping up the AC, if you want to save fuel, you can always open the windows.
In terms of how many miles per gallon an RV gets, this will vary based on type and size of the RV in question. However, no matter what RV you have, taking all possible steps to increase fuel efficiency is recommended.