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Hellopeople123 06-19-2012 12:55 AM

Can't get a straight answer
So I have been driving my new ram crew cab 2wd express back an forth to work . I'm trying to get the best possible mileage possible . I have been using cruise control on every trip 65mph . It seems the Eco (on) light shuts off when I go over fifty miles per hour . Flat terrain hmmm .
I m not going to drive 50 mph to get 20 mpg . That's not cool . I wonder if I reset the computer if it will fix the issue and relearn? When I talked to the dealership the service guy asked me if I was carring a load or gong up a hill. I told him no. He then told me chasing the Eco on light was pointless . That's just not good enough for me .

doz 06-19-2012 01:00 AM

Look at your EVIC's fuel mileage. There are times when ECO mode is off but Im getting 20+ mpg on the highway. Its not indicative of mileage AT ALL!

Also, ECO mode doesnt mean that MDS is active.

Hellopeople123 06-19-2012 01:08 AM

I don't have evic on my express . I just figured if the Eco didnt display on the mds wasn't working .

doz 06-19-2012 01:28 AM

MDS can kick in without being in "ECO" mode but it will USUALLY be on during ECO mode. Youd be surprised at how inaccurate that "ECO" light is. Its really a joke. Ill be cruising down the highway @ 75-80mph getting 20-22mpg and the eco light will be off (as well as MDS off).

Best way to check gas mileage is the old fashion way. Fill up prior to departure and fill up on arrival and do the math.

brad12kx 06-19-2012 01:41 AM

The 'ECO' light is only a computer programmed light that is based on an algorithm that was written by some engineer who determined what he believed 'Driving in an Ecological Fashion' is. What I don't understand is why they would put such a light on a 6000 lb truck to begin with.

It's a 6000 lb truck.....there is nothing ecological about it. LOL

That aside.....a bit anyway.....once you increase your speed above about 45-50mph, you are now contending with overcoming a fair bit of air resistance and simply that takes horsepower to overcome. Unless you are going down hill with wind, you are extremely unlikely to see the 'ECO' light, and even less likely to ever get it to switch into MDS (4 cylinder) mode. Simply, you are demanding enough power of the engine to maintain that speed that you are NOT satisfying the computer algorithm that lights the ECO light.

If you drive in a fashion that keeps it lit, you WILL see the fuel mileage benefits; however at what cost!?

- You will start from every stop sign/traffic light so slowly that the sound of horns blasting behind you will become 'Normal'
- You will crest every hill at less 1/4 the speed you started at
- You will never drive over 50mph unless it's 'down hill with wind'
- You will become used to hearing everyone call you 'Grandpa', and not in friendly meaningful way
- You will never get a scratch in the box of the truck as you will never haul anything in it
- You will never experience trailer towing
- You will never experience the awesome feeling of letting the Hemi flex it muscles.

IMO, the price for 'ECO' is way to high and the ECO light is something you need to learn to ignore. Cover it with a piece of tape if yo have to. It will only drive you insane and mess with your driving enjoyment. After all, I'm sure you didn't buy a truck because you were after fuel economy, but rather because you wanted to do things best suited for a truck.

I doesn't hurt to want to get the most mileage out of it, but don't let some stupid light on the dash mess with your mind and have you believing that something is wrong when everything is just fine. If anything, curse the mental midget that thought it was good idea to put an ECO light in a full size truck. :doh:

You have a great truck that looks amazing (love the color ;)). Enjoy all the things it has to offer; Power, style, comfort and that incredible ride. :smileup:

dodgert 06-19-2012 01:52 AM

welcome to driving a hemi lol

Mate2011RT 06-19-2012 11:18 AM

Brad12kx - awesome post (as always - cheers!)

Back to OP: I'm gonna stand against the slings and arrows here and say screw cruise control. Same for the ECO light. You are better than either of those amenities at making your vehicle do what you want.

Here's the thing for me - cruise keeps things even, but it is reactive not predictive, right? By that I mean when you are approaching a hill, it is easier for you to ease on a bit rather having the cruise detent at the last minute and waste the efficiency of the last 5 miles. Or have it over-reach the summit before coasting the other side.
Same when in a passing or other speed change situation - acceleration with cruise is the pinacle of inefficiency (to me), and I swear 'resume' is more aggressive than my heavy right hoof.
Can cruise be more consistent? Sure...I guess. Certainly convenient, but I will still defend that a human operator can outdo it while being more engaged, safer, etc, etc.

So far for me, I drive around town in '5' to keep from having to over-react to get out of MDS in traffic (which was constant - the lag in traffic in a 2ton 4-cylinder is suicidal, let alone wasteful trying to get her going again). I can honestly expect 16-17mpg around town. (I have an R/T, and I tend to drive that way, so being totally honest being closer to 16).
On long trips, if I run in 'D' and stay below 75mph, I can get 20mpg consistently. If I go over 75, I lose a solid 2mpg off that. No cruise, and I'm not big on watching the ECO light.

Guess that was a lot of opinion that might not help too much except to echo the above that you have a great vehicle - enjoy it, and realize how awesome even 18mpg is with this much weight and power. :D

snrusnak 06-19-2012 12:38 PM

I'm almost positive the ECO light is just a glorified vacuum gauge. So it should be lit up with light throttle(cruising at 65mph).

Hellopeople123 06-19-2012 10:42 PM

well i tried something today . I unplugged the battery to reset the computer . I don't know if thats what did it but my mds and my eco light are now coming on and staying on at 70 .( as long as Im not going up a hill) before I couldnt get the mds or eco to come on over 50 .

Thanks guys

brad12kx 06-19-2012 11:28 PM

Resetting your computer like you did is IMO a good thing to do 2-3 times a year; more often if you know your driving conditions will be very different for a while (such as going to the race track for a day), as the reset process removes the learned adaptive variables leaving it in an aggressive learn mode. That way it will adapt aggressively to your current driving style.

You will likely notice that in a short time period that you will have more and more of a challenge trying to get the ECO light to come on. I stand to be corrected, but my observation suggests that the ECO algorithm takes into account 'your' normal driving and bases it's operation partially on the 'average' MPG. I have noticed that it will never light if the real time indicator is below the triangle that represents the average. If you have been driving in a way that results in the average being the same as real time, the ECO light doesn't seem to want to light. :4-dontknow:

All I know is there is nothing ECO about a full size truck, so I see the ECO light as nothing more than a disco light show. :)

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