The Brain Bucket

Advice for New Motorcycle Riders: How To Get Better Gas Mileage

Jun 16, 2018 6:00:00 PM / by Cam

Save money on gas: How to make your bike more gas efficient

When you get that urge to ride and jump on your bike, there’s nothing that can prevent it. It’s like when you get the urge for something sweet, here’s nothing you can do to satisfy that urge, other than give into it. Riding your motorcycle is a lot like that, except it’s usually an urge that happens pretty consistently.

If there’s ever a time you feel a bit more stressed out than usual, or you’re in a room of crowded people that you’re not that interested in conversing with, the urge will randomly kick in. You don’t know where you'll go, or what roads you’ll take, but you know that being on your bike will be enough.


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filling up motorcycle


So imagine hopping onto your ride and starting up the engine, all while feeling your heartbeat increase to prepare for the adventure ahead, only to realize you have enough gas in your tank to get you down your street. The high is crushed, the quickened heartbeat is stalled, and now you have to pony on over to the nearest gas station to fill up  before you can get your fix. When you want to ride, that’s the only thing on your mind, so a near-empty gas tank is an annoyance in the way of you quenching your urge. And sure, it’s a small one, but what if it wasn’t something you had to worry about? If you don’t have a bike that’s already excellent in the “gas mileage” category, how can you improve it?

Here are some tips and tricks to make sure your bike is getting all the gas mileage it can:


Try to take highways more often:

beautiful highway


Okay, I understand that highways don’t necessarily give you the prettiest or most jaw-dropping view. But sometimes it’s beneficial to take them because they’re easier driving overall. The less often you brake or have to drive on curving or swooping roads, the less gas you’ll be using. When you’re driving on a flat service in a straight direction, you don’t have to use as much gas to get you where you’re going. That’s not to say you should take highways all the time, because riders need to experience and view the beautiful nature around them. But if you can justify taking the highway, it’s a great gas savings.


The more bike accessories you have, the more weight:

motorcycle with saddlebags


I know, you have a secret soft spot for those beautiful leather saddlebags that decorate your bike. And while I agree that they’re great (and functional, too) the more you add to your bike, the more weight you’re putting on it. And the more weight you put on it, the harder it has to work to get you where you need to go. As soon as you get on your ride, your already adding additional weight. No, I’m not calling you fat, it’s just important to remember that it’s easy to weigh your bike down. So pick your accessories carefully, and keep this in mind.


Pick a high fuel quality:

gas station


While there is such thing as fuel quality that is only expensive for the sake of being expensive, sometimes not picking the cheapest option can benefit you. It can be easy for fuel to build up and create sludge and residue to clog your fuel injectors. That’s a mess that no one is really interested in dealing with, so consider upgrading your gas quality to prevent that blockage from happening. This will help your motorcycle run as efficiently as it can.


Work with the wind, not against it:

full face motorcycle helmet


I’m sure you have that favored motorcycle helmet that you love to wear because it makes you look just as kickass as you feel, but it might actually be causing more problems than helping. I’ll never suggest downgrading on helmet quality, because safety first kids, but considering how your helmet deals with the wind is important. A full-face helmet cuts through the wind easier than other variations of helmets, which means that it will split through the wind rather than try to work against it. The more resistance you have, the harder your bike has to work.


Show your tires some lovin':

motorcycle tire


As previously mentioned in other articles, no one enjoys having to deck out their bike with a set of new wheels. Sure, it’s easy to check if they’re in good riding condition, but having to purchase new tires can be a bit rough on your wallet. However, making sure your tires are in good condition will help to directly impact how much effort your bike has to make to ride. So make sure the treads are still solid, but more importantly, make sure they’re inflated to the correct pressure. A tire that isn’t round is a useless tire-you try rolling an oval down the street. Put some air in those babies and reap the benefits!


Try not to drive like a bat out of hell:

crazy motorcycle riding


I’m not saying all of the time, just some of the time. The more aggressively you drive, the more gas you’re going to need, and that’s because aggressive driving usually involves quick braking and random spurts of acceleration. Take it easy on your bike and the road, and make an effort to drive more efficiently than you usually do. Plus, you’ll probably decrease your chances of an accident, and staying alive is always nice, right? Just don't be this girl.


Consider a lighter bike:

lightweight motorcycle


You love your bike, I know. It has a special place in your heart, especially for those of you who have named it and treat it like family. But if you’re already considering purchasing another, or your first, motorcycle, it doesn’t hurt to consider a lighter option. Maybe you ride a touring bike right now, but you’re no longer going on the long rides you used to, and you want to adapt to that. If that’s the case, you can consider a cruiser or something a little lighter. But if you want to go from one tour to another touring bike, I can’t help you with that; those things are a fat ride in all the right ways.

While you shouldn’t significantly impact or alter your riding ways to make this happen, it never hurts to be just a little more conscious of how things can be improved. I want you to continue to enjoy the ride any way you choose, but if you’re saving yourself a little money and making things a little easier on your bike, change and adjustment never hurt. Gas can add up, so make your ride count!   


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Topics: Articles, Motorcycles, The Brain Bucket


Written by Cam

I'm new to riding, and I'm here to tell everyone about it! Follow my articles on advice for new motorcycle riders and overviews of some of the most popular motorcycles on the road.