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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sunday night we are leaving for Texas!

The trip per google maps is about 1800ish miles each way.

So far, my pre-trip plans are

Oil Change
Clean KnN
check Trans fluid, check Diff's fluid, check Transfer Case fluid (Replace if needed)

Wash truck (A clean truck gets better mileage)

Any thoughts as to what kind of range per Tank I should see? I am assuming close to the 400 mile range if I drive like a human..
 

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About a month ago, I did a 2400 mile (round trip) road trip in my Challenger, and posted some tips before I left. Here's what I wrote.

I'm about to embark on my annual Western PA to South Florida road trip that takes me to Captiva Island and my annual vacation/beach-bum-rum-athon.

Having done this a few times, here are some tips that help ensure an enjoyable long distance road trip and make this trip the highlight of my year.

1. Vehicle prep. Nothing magic here. Check all the fluids, tire pressures, belts, etc. Don't start out with any wear item that's "marginal'. The car needs to be in top condition. Clean the windows inside and out.

2. Along with your normal emergency kit, bring along some extra tools, vehicle fluids, and duct tape. If you don't normally carry flashlights, put one in the car.

3. Wear comfortable clothing (especially shoes). Depending on your duration level (I can do 6 hours straight sometimes without needing fuel or to pee), you don't want tight shoes or undergutchies that are climbing into places you may never get them back from.

4. Snacks and drinks. Again, depending on whether you need regular stops, or are a duration driver, snack and drinks can keep you going longer, but too many drinks makes for more road-side stops.

5. Keep the cabin a little cooler than you might on a normal drive. Helps keep you alert.

6. Know the concealed carry laws (where your permit is good and where it is not). When I drive through VA, since they don't recognize my PA permit, I must unload my weapon, and store it separately from my ammo while in VA. Nothing would ruin a road trip worse than a routine traffic stop that turns into 30-days in a rural southern pokey, for not knowing the laws.

7. Speaking of avoiding the police. Don't speed. Resist the temptation to "exercise the HEMI". As a rule, I never drive more than 62 in a 55 zone, 73 in a 65 zone, or 78 in a 70 zone, unless I'm in some traffic or cluster of cars, all going the same excessive speed (just going with the flow). I've NEVER gotten nicked for speeding at these reasonable amounts over posted limits. My only two tickets in the past 20 years were for going 37 in a 30, and going 45 in a 35.

8. If you're off the interstates, research the speed traps and stick to the exact speed limits in small towns and reduced speed zones. On my trip, Summersville WV, Starke, FL and Waldo FL are notorious speed traps. Exact speed limit in construction zones.

9. Have a paper map. NAV (both in-car and on your smart phone) are notoriously inaccurate and not a reliable way to navigate. Just for fun, I put my destination in my NAV when I road trip, and then count the times it directs me to take a wrong turn from what I already know is the correct path. It averages 15-20 incorrect directions each one-way trip to/from Florida. A paper map works when the NAV is offline or when you have no cell/data service. If there's an accident that blocks the interstate, a paper map will easily show several alternate paths, while the NAV may send you on a longer than necessary detour.

10. Know your limitations. I'm a road warrior, and last year, I drove Ft. Meyers to home (1214 miles) in 17.5 hours (including 35 minutes of stops....16hr. 55min. actual driving time). Not everyone can drive like this. If you're only good for 5 or 8 hours at a time, plan your rests or motel stays accordingly. This year, I'm doing 12 hrs first day and 5 the second.

11. Start looking for a gas station when your tank hits 1/4. Don't wait for the low-fuel light.

12. Try to pick a start-time that will keep you out of urban centers at peak traffic times. On my trip, I'll avoid Charlotte and Columbia rush hours, by starting at 6:00 AM. You can actually reduce your drive time by starting later or earlier (depending the specifics of the traffic in the cities on your route). Also....those loop bypasses are not always the best way to go. Some of them are just as heavily traveled as the straight through paths (Columbus OH, and Charlotte, NC, and Richmond VA are some good examples) where I've found the bypasses to be worse paths. Columbia, SC and Jacksonville, FL bypasses are good. The only way to know this, is to drive them both and file away for future trips. And if in Florida, never EVER drive I-4...unless you're actually going to Orlando. There is virtually no time that you won't spend an extra hour in traffic. Find an alternate route. I take 301 from near Jacksonville to Ocala to I-75.

12. Leave the wife at home. Mrs. K-Dawg will fly to Ft. Meyers a day after I leave, and I'll meet her at the Ft. Meyers airport, then reverse the process on the way home. She hates to drive/ride in a car and I hate to fly...so we take separate mode of transportation to our vacation. This way, we haven't driven each other crazy getting there. And we enjoy the beach together. Solo road trips are much better than being cooped up in a car for 17 hours straight.
 

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I will second the windows and esp. the windshield cleaning on the inside - nothing worse than sun glare through haze.


Also, invaluable on a long trip is the premapping of fuel stops - the price varies wildly.
I use


http://www.ohiogasprices.com/Price_By_County.aspx


If you go by your route, you can see the color change, then zoom in on the map and you can see what the prices are and where.
 

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Just got back from a trip to SOCAL about 2100m each way. Just remember the further west you go the less gas stops. I would start looking for gas when my DTE would get to 150m, unless I had to stop for other reasons:Wow1:.
Yes you should see 400m per tank but that can vary depending on weather and head winds and road construction. Good Luck and have a Great Trip.
 

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Road Trip

when i still had my 2009 HEMI Ram, i averaged 16.8 MPG & i had the 32 gallon tank

Every year i drive from San Diego Ca. to Danbury Ct. no one is with me
San Diego, Yuma AZ, Lordsburg NM, El Paso Tx were my first day gas stops. 10 hour day, just under 700 miles

The 2nd day, i stop in Sweetwater Tx, it is the half way point & is just past the smell of the OIL Fields & refineries, about a 6 to 7 hour drive

the 3rd day i drive about 7 - 8 hours to Texarkana Arkansas
I have driven from El Paso to Texarkana Arkansas in 1 day, i did it one time & it is not worth it. It is 814 miles & takes about 14 hours. I take the I-20 to bypass Ft. Worth & Dallas

The 4th day i drive to Bristol or Abingdon Virginia
Day 5 i only have an 8 hour drive to get to Danbury Ct

Now i have the Eco-diesel & it has the 18 gallon tank & i get right at 25.7 MPG
I still make the same stops for fuel & motels, mostly to stretch my legs & grab some coffee

======================================================

Last year construction was bad when i was returning home, so i changed the route
I made the mistake of driving through Columbus OH, at 9 PM
It was all construction zone, it had just rained & it was like going through a Chinese Fire Drill or a Charlie Chan movie run backwards
 

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All good info. If you don't have it already download WAZE to your phone. I find it way more accurate than my nav and it adjusts on the fly for slowdowns. Since it's a social app it also lets you know of cops, obstacles in the road(tires, debris, etc...), stopped vehicles on the side. Warning though, it eats the battery so keep your phone charged.
 

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I like to go online to a Map Routing site
That way, i get to know my preferred routing & alternate routing

Say for instance you are driving through El Paso Texas on I-10, it is crazy with road construction
If it rains or there is an accident, Waze & all the other APPS will route you on the same roads that every other APP, including the Ram trucks Nav to get around the accident :(
Sometimes it is best to stay on the Highway & work your way through the accident.
BUT, what no APPS will tell you, is that there are 2 more ways to go most of the way through El Paso. North Loop & South Loop
I didn't know that they were even there until a El Paso Member in here told me about them

I may take the South Loop when returning home at the end of this month, just to see what it is like
 

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Waze is good; I think I am going to get a radar detector though.


I like to wax before a trip, a lot of people seem to think this is crazy, but the bugs and road grime come off so much easier on the back end when you start off waxed.


I am not a cochino so I don't allow food in my truck.


I expect 500-550 miles out of a tank (32 gallon). I've gone over 700 miles on one freak tank but that was when I had better discipline in controlling my speed and had the OEM low rolling resistance tires.


I try to never let my tank get below 1/4; if I'm towing I'll start getting a little sweaty below 3/8s.


What route are you taking, 70 to 44 in St Louis to 35 in Oklahoma City?
 

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Lots of good info here already, so not much to add other than have a good safe trip and let us know how it went. I've done a few road trips from FL out to Texas to visit family and then up thru NM to CO. This was in my brothers 2011 Ram 1500 Hemi, but towing a UHaul 6x12 trailer so I can't really compare fuel economy with you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, We did the trip and boy was that fun..

We went thru NY>NJ>PA>MD>WV>VA>TN>MS>LA>TX

Averaged about 16.7- 18.1 ish MPG depending on how much drafting I did, about 110 gallons of petrol heading south. I did not keep a log on the way back.

I did try running both 87 and 89 Octane gas.. Made no difference in gas mileage.

Total trip was 4029 miles from when I left to my return.

On another note, if you have never been to San Antonio, I highly suggest it! Had a great time!
 

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On another note, if you have never been to San Antonio, I highly suggest it! Had a great time!



I'm from there; I'll be going back to visit my in-laws for Thanksgiving week and I'm very much looking forward to it
 
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