Improving Efficiency = Cost Savings
One of the most common questions at any marine dealer’s showroom is, “How much fuel will it use?” One of the most significant costs of running a boat is fuel, which is why fuel consumption should be a top priority.
Unbeknownst to many boaters, the answer to that classic showroom question lies largely in the hands of the skipper. There are over half a dozen factors that contribute to the fuel dock bill, so here are our best tips for how to stay out for longer between trips to the pump.
Finding the sweet spot requires skill and finesse. Trimming out your vessel while under power will reduce drag in the water by raising the bow, therefore save fuel. It is impossible to achieve optimum fuel economy if you don’t find optimum trim. Trim the bow up until the prop starts to suck a little air (this is called “ventilating”) and then bring it down a little. This is your sweet spot.
“Trim” is defined as the difference between the draft forward and the draft aft. You can read a great writeup about this right here.
Towers and T-Tops can work for you or against you, so it’s important to understand what’s going on. Aerodynamic drag is caused by canvas enclosed T-tops, hardtops, towers and Bimini tops, reducing top speed by up to 3mph. Some T-Tops act as a wing and generate lift, making your vessel more efficient and faster – but as soon as you put the canvas back up, it’s like dragging a parachute. Monitor the tachometer and speedometer while driving your boat with the canvas up and down, and with the windshield open and closed. Understanding these factors will help you reduce fuel consumption.
Tint Your Windows
A HUGE amount of energy is wasted by heating and cooling your cabin. What if you could keep the temperature constant inside, whether it is the height of summer or the cool cold days of fall? Advanced marine window films are perfect for regulating temperature. They keep radiant heat inside in the cool weather and help keep out the blazing sun at high season. This means less need for heaters and A/C, which means you use much less energy. Just like driving a car with the climate control blasting, your boat will be way less efficient the more systems you are using. Give your heater and A/C a break and save a ton of money on fuel in the process.
Ask us to find out about all the options available for you.
Back off on the Throttle
This is one that everyone knows in the back of their mind but may not want to admit. Most vessels will reach around 90% of their maximum speed at around 70% throttle, so unless you are in a tournament, that extra 30% throttle really isn’t buying you much speed. Most of the time, it’s best to back off just a little and pocket the savings.
Affordable boating heaven is easily achievable. These tips will help any craft run more efficiently, keeping you out on the water for longer; and isn’t that what it’s all about?