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Thread: How much does air con increase fuel consumption?

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    Regular Member cabbage's Avatar
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    confused How much does air con increase fuel consumption?

    Always leave the air con switched on but last week switched it off all week just to see what diffrence it made and can't tell the diffrence in fuel consumption - so is it only 1 or 2 mpg?

    Praps it's cos weathers not hot yet so air con doesn't have to do anything?

    Presumably it's only cooling that increases fuel consumption? Not heating?

    Are there any official vx mpg figures about this?

    Has anyone found any diffrence?

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    Regular Member wanna veccy's Avatar
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    doesn't matter whether it is hot or cold outside the air con will still do the same amount of work and use the same amount of fuel in the summer.

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    Regular Member ballan22direct's Avatar
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    Not sure about mpg but doesnt it go away with a good bit of power? something daft like 10%. so it's bound to make a noticable difference

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    I watched a mythbusters programme on Discovery in which they tried to prove or disprove the fact that aircon makes a difference.

    They did use lincoln navigators (I Think) but the one with aircon on ran out of fuel 30 miles before the one without aircon on!!

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    It seems that the bigger the engine the less the"drag"it has,also most of the fuel is used when it s first powered up and then it settles down after thatOn some small engine's like corsa 1.2 it used to turn off when full throttle was used...

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    Regular Member Big Knox's Avatar
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    something usually not mentioned is that if you roll your windows down instead, this will create drag and decrease your mpg but I don't know how much by in comparison

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    Regular Member davree's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knoxvillain View Post
    something usually not mentioned is that if you roll your windows down instead, this will create drag and decrease your mpg but I don't know how much by in comparison
    This is what they did on the Mythbusters programme I saw, the car with the aircon off had all the windows down!!

    It still carried on an extra 30 miles more than the one with the aircon on!!

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    I had a Renault Laguna 1.8 16v for 3 1/2 years, driving just over 111,000 miles on all types of road / traffic conditions. In the summer I used the aircon, in the winter it was switched off. The car averaged 36.6 miles to the gallon all year round, dropping to 36.2 for the last 20,000 miles or so.

    On that experience, I don't think it makes a lot of difference in the real world.

    Ice

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    Regular Member Big Knox's Avatar
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    I personally don't find this country hot enough to need it although I'm told it's handy for demisting the windscreen.

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    It's about 2mpg drop on my 1.9CDTi 150 - the general rule of thumb is that 40mph is a cut-off where the aero-drag of having the windows open has more downward effect on economy than shutting them and popping the AC on.

    Very useful for demisting, so it's not just about warm weather like it might be in the US (where it can also get very humid in places too).

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