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2007 T&C Touring 230k mi
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

2007 T&C Touring, 232k miles on the odometer.

I normally don’t care about fuel mileage but I recently reset my console’s MPG and over the course of three weeks it shows 12.8. Granted, I do mostly stop and go driving with the AC on. But with plugs only a year old and smooth idle, is a number this low really to be expected? Considering tossing a bottle of fuel system cleaner in the tank next fill up for kicks. What’s your guys’ mileage looking like this summer?
 

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2008 Town and Country 3.8L 175k mi
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306 Posts
My 08 van with the 3.8 engine gets 10-11 mpg in stop and go traffic. I’m talking stop lights and stop signs every few hundred feet, plus the traffic caused by other cars.

I would say that 12.8 is perfectly normal for stop and go traffic, especially since you have the ac on. The 3.8 engines are not the most efficient.
 

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IMO, those numbers are pretty horrible.

The worst I've ever gotten was 16 MPG. That was in the dead of winter with a lot of idling / warm up time. The best I ever got was 23 MPG, and that was in the summer and mostly highway driving. I'm usually somewhere right around 20 MPG. But, I don't do much inner city driving, and my A/C is inop / bypassed.
 

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fix it if you can
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How much weight is in the van? Manual A/c controls w. a/c always on? hills of flats? how heavy is your lead foot?
I'd say you can get 13-13.5 if you feather the throttle (so it upshifts faster), stay below 2400 rpm and crawl whenever possible instead of stopping...
A two ton brick is not going to do much better with constant acceleration and deceleration.
 

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As a sanity check, do a controlled mpg test on the highway at 60 mph for say 60 miles. Your mileage should be in the low to mid 20's.

Remember, you're pushing around a 4500 lb box, and stop-and-go city driving is the worst. A hybrid recaptures all the in stopping energy thru regenerative braking!
 

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2007 T&C Touring 230k mi
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How much weight is in the van? Manual A/c controls w. a/c always on? hills of flats? how heavy is your lead foot?
Nothing in the van other than all the seats, a jack, pair of jack stands, and full size spare. Yes, manual AC, and I drive the van pretty gently. My family always claimed I drive like a grandpa. :rolleyes:

Once every two months I drive 100 miles home and 100 miles back on a trip and that usually gets me about 20-21 mpg, which sounds right for a van at this age, but 13 in the suburbs seems absurd
 

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fix it if you can
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How old is upstream Oxygen sensor? and is it a Denso/NTK or some Bosch or other aftermarket?
The shorter the distance, the longer (greater percentage of time) it's in "open loop"...
 

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2007 T&C Touring 230k mi
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191 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I had the converter replaced back in 2019 when I first bought the van, the repair invoice doesn’t mention any replacement of the O2 sensors so I’m unaware of their age.

Upstream is the one closest to the engine right? The wiring on it looks fairly newish
 

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Your intown driving MPG does seem pretty low. I get around 17 to 18 MPG, mixed driving using AC. I get 20 to 22 MPG on the highway using AC. I normally drive 70 to 75 MPH, so the mileage would increase if I stayed around 60 MPH.

Make sure your air filter is clean too.
 

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Considering tossing a bottle of fuel system cleaner in the tank next fill up for kicks.
I vote for Techron Complete Fuel System Cleaner... and make sure you achieve the recommended additive to fuel ratio of 1 oz of Techron Complete Fuel System Cleaner for every gallon of gas! According to numerous near out-of-gas fillups, my tank can apparently hold somehting approaching 21 gallons of gas, so I'd suggest shooting for at least 20oz of the techron cleaner... which is basically a couple of bottles of Techron cleaner as sourced from most stores. Have had notable engine operation improvements from using at the proper ratio as compared to more diluted applications in the past.

Also recommend application shortly before an oil change interval so you have just enough time to run the treatment tank followed by a few untreated tankfulls... and then change oil to get much of the residual chemicals/contaminants from the cleaning out of the system shortly after the cleaning instead of continuing to circulate them without the oil change over a long period of time.

FYI, I routinely get around 16.8 MPG (per trip computer anyway) on my 2005 T&C Limited with 3.8L during city stop/go driving; however, that's probably just a bit lower than what should be achievable if my wife didn't insist on "waiting in the car" with the A/C running much of the time I'm out and about with her!
 

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3rd gen > all others
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I have a 5 mile/10 minute drive to work every day, with another 10 minutes of idling at work. Then there's the grocery shopping about once a week that's 10 miles one way, and I've made a couple trips to my parents' old house about 2 hours/90 miles away. My van is a 2004 T&C Limited AWD and it's showing 15.4 mpg average. My A/C is broken, I leave the rearmost seats out and have a fullsize spare tire inside, and my van is the heaviest variation of a 4th gen you can get. I keep my gas tank over the half mark, usually at the 3/4 tank mark so there's the weight of fuel too.
 
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2008 Town and Country 3.8L 175k mi
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On average, my van gets 22-23 mpg on the highway. Sometimes when the road is flat it goes up to 24 or 25.

Like I said, the city mpg doesn’t phase me (anymore) because no maintenance will make up for poor driving conditions.

over the past 1.5 years my van has had New plugs, wires, coil pack, o2 sensors, pcv valve, egr valve, intake gasket, throttle body cleaning, new air filter, new IAT sensor, and probably more that I can’t remember. City mpg is still 10-11. Is it horrendous? Absolutely. But that’s city life (and I live more towards the suburbs).
 

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3rd Gen Plebeian
1997 Plymouth Grand Voyager Rallye
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1,406 Posts
Hey all,

2007 T&C Touring, 232k miles on the odometer.

I normally don’t care about fuel mileage but I recently reset my console’s MPG and over the course of three weeks it shows 12.8. Granted, I do mostly stop and go driving with the AC on. But with plugs only a year old and smooth idle, is a number this low really to be expected? Considering tossing a bottle of fuel system cleaner in the tank next fill up for kicks. What’s your guys’ mileage looking like this summer?
I was getting 28mpg on the highway with my 97 GV 3.3L, 18-19 mpg around the city.

Stop watching the average. Watch the instant fuel economy instead. There's a lot of really good, and really bad, hypermiling strategies you could try to adopt. The good stuff will make you safer, faster, and decrease wear/tear on your vehicle. A lot of the more extreme hypermiling tactics are dangerous or unlawful.

A fantastic one, brake earlier. If your coming up to a stop in traffic or a red light, slow down a lot earlier than you normally would. The goal is to get to the traffic light by the time it turns green, rather than race to it and have to sit until it turns green. Slowing down 5-10mph a couple hundred yards back is quite often enough to buy time so it turns green without you ever getting slower than 30mph say. This saves you a huge amount of fuel, since you're only accelerating 5-10mph after the light instead of all the way from a dead stop. Less wear on your brakes, engine, and transmission. And it makes you way more safe, I do this in traffic too and there's been a few times I would of gotten rear ended if I hadn't braked early: sudden stop in traffic, you want to brake hard and fast then crawl/creep/coast/gradually-brake up to the slowdown. You can then watch behind you and sometimes you'll notice people not able to brake in time behind you, you now have extra buffer area in front of you to stop braking or even accelerate to prevent getting rear ended. Braking early will buy you time, space, and escape options.
Once you get more practiced at braking early, you'll get real good at guessing the timing of lights and rolling into them as they turn green.

Carrying speed through turns. This can be dangerous if taken to the extreme, but at its basic level it improves everything about your driving. You just want to do a very relaxed and safe version of racing lines through corners where possible. Brake up to the entry of the outside of the turn, smoothly transition from braking to turning as you aim for the apex, then come out wide as you transition off of the steering and back onto the throttle. Being near the apex gives you more options to avoid obstacles, since you are already on the inside and can easily go wide if needed. It's safer to not be combining braking or acceleration with turning when needed. Coming in wide, cutting towards the apex, and exiting wide gives you a straighter line and better visibility. The economy benefit is exiting with slightly higher speed, so less acceleration after the turn.

Drafting is frowned upon, except if there's a crosswind. As long as you aren't holding up traffic, you can sit a lane over from a truck in a crosswind and be in their aerodynamic shadow.

Pulse and glide on hills. Conventional wisdom is to accelerate down hills and coast up the other side, but this just decreases the engine efficiency and increases aero loses. An engine is more efficient when it's pushed hard than under light loads, meaning it's better to do quick spurts in some situations. You want to accelerate up hills, then coast down the other side. You're keeping a more constant speed which is golden since aerodynamic drag increases exponentially with speed, and you're subjecting the engine to a more efficient high load up/no load down split than you would with light load up/moderate load down
 

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3rd Gen Plebeian
1997 Plymouth Grand Voyager Rallye
Joined
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1,406 Posts
I vote for Techron Complete Fuel System Cleaner... and make sure you achieve the recommended additive to fuel ratio of 1 oz of Techron Complete Fuel System Cleaner for every gallon of gas! According to numerous near out-of-gas fillups, my tank can apparently hold somehting approaching 21 gallons of gas, so I'd suggest shooting for at least 20oz of the techron cleaner... which is basically a couple of bottles of Techron cleaner as sourced from most stores. Have had notable engine operation improvements from using at the proper ratio as compared to more diluted applications in the past.

Also recommend application shortly before an oil change interval so you have just enough time to run the treatment tank followed by a few untreated tankfulls... and then change oil to get much of the residual chemicals/contaminants from the cleaning out of the system shortly after the cleaning instead of continuing to circulate them without the oil change over a long period of time.

FYI, I routinely get around 16.8 MPG (per trip computer anyway) on my 2005 T&C Limited with 3.8L during city stop/go driving; however, that's probably just a bit lower than what should be achievable if my wife didn't insist on "waiting in the car" with the A/C running much of the time I'm out and about with her!
You'd be way better off with a couple runs of E15 fuel, or E85 if your vehicle is flex fuel capable. The 15%/85% ethanol in those is probably impossible to beat as a fuel system cleaner. Most of the fuel system cleaners and moisture removers are likely just ethanol anyways. It'll clean out your cylinders and valves too, not just the fuel system.
 

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Drivin' Maniac
2002 Grand Caravan ES 3.8L
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2,381 Posts
Most of the fuel system cleaners and moisture removers are likely just ethanol anyways.
Actually, the BEST cleaners contain PEA, polyetheramine according to BobIsTheOilGuy.

when it comes to selecting the best fuel injector cleaner, your vehicle type will affect your choice, but certain features are universally helpful -- namely, the presence of PEA and the shape of the container. PEA is especially effective when it comes to dissolving sediment and cleaning engines, and its presence should be a priority in your selection.
polyetheramine or PEA is an ingredient that makes fuel system and injector cleaners more effective, and many drivers won't consider a fuel cleaner product that doesn't have it.

Here is a good article, where my quotes came from.

 

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3rd gen > all others
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From 2004 to 2007 in the EVIC, all you GET is the average. No more instant fuel economy with the NGC computer. That was one of the things I miss from the earlier vans, that was going to make me swap my wiring harness/computers over to the 2001 parts I have. Then the 4.0 swap came along and I decided it's less work to try to keep the NGC system to run it, and also have autostick from the Pacifica computer and also possibly have the ability to swap over to the 300M Special computer and build a dual exhaust system.

My tires are oversized anyway, so I probably get more miles than indicated.
 

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I forgot to mention proper tire pressure and wheel alignment. Anything that causes resistance to forward motion, will impact MPG.
 

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2006 Dodge Caravan SXE
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I forgot to mention proper tire pressure and wheel alignment. Anything that causes resistance to forward motion, will impact MPG.
Higher load rated tires improve MPG a good deal. For our vans, those tires with a good roll resistance All Season and inflates to 44psi are the attractive ones to look for. Tire that are low for load ratings often will have a side wall bulge. That bulge often cycles around as the wheels spin causing side wall constant flexing and lower MPG overall. This is a common item for hypermilers to correct right away for the first mechanical upgrade to the vehicle.

Good pointer on the tires. A+

Alignments are really needed at least 1X per year.

Brake dragging of the pads need to be checked 2X a year, Spring and Fall usually. Keep the pad glides free of rust and smooth. Often pads are generic to fit various vehicles. So, it the pads ride tight, a little filing is needed to correct the problem. The problem in time could cause warped disc rotors. When I file, I take the sharp edges off other than opening up the slot a little. This helps when the piston pulls back fast and the pad cocks slightly at an angle. No binding. Brake dragging kills MPG and has things remain heated up while in motion.
 
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