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This is how far you can really drive on empty

All cars are definitely not equal

A woman driving.
A woman driving. (Photo by Elina Sazonova from Pexels.)

With gas prices soaring recently, perhaps you’re trying to space out your gas station visits. And that begs the question: How far can your vehicle really go on empty?

We found an answer for you! And there are a couple other things worth mentioning, too.

For starters, aside from the obvious problems running out of gas can entail -- getting stranded on the side of a busy highway, somewhere miles from civilization or when it’s blazing hot or freezing cold and you have kids in the car -- driving on empty can also do damage to your vehicle.

According to Your Mechanic, driving with a low amount of fuel in your gas tank can damage your fuel pump, due to any debris or contamination in the gas, which can just naturally settle at the bottom of the tank and be sent through the pump. If you do it once, it’s probably not that big of a deal, but it can be harmful if you’re doing it regularly.

OK, so on to the nitty gritty: How trusty is that gas gauge?

In short, not very.

When your vehicle offers an approximation for how many miles you have until empty, that’s based on the average mileage your vehicle has attained while previously on the road, so it may not be accurate to your current driving conditions, Your Mechanic reported.

And finally: How far can you actually drive on E?

via GIPHY

The answer to this question really depends on a number of things:

  • Your vehicle
  • Your driving habits
  • Road conditions

There’s no doubt, sometimes you get in a situation in which you have no choice but to ride it out on E until you reach the next gas station. This information from Your Mechanic will give you a better idea of exactly what you’re dealing with.

MakeModelAverage miles remaining when low fuel warning light is illuminated
FordF-15039
ChevroletSilverado34
Ram150041
ToyotaCamry42
ToyotaCorolla45
NissanAltima41
HondaAccord45
HondaCR-V37
HondaCivic43
FordFusion39
FordEscape34
ToyotaRAV435
ChevroletEquinox30
NissanRogue44
HyundaiElantra41
FordExplorer32
ChevroletCruze7
FordFocus41
GMCSierra Denali39
HyundaiSonata43
JeepCherokee32
NissanSentra39
JeepWrangler41
Chrysler20026
ChevroletMalibu33
JeepGrand Cherokee30
ToyotaTacoma39
SubaruForester36
KiaOptima34
ToyotaHighlander40
KiaSoul36
ToyotaSienna39
SubaruOutback40
NissanVersa41
VolkswagenJetta44
HondaOdyssey49
HondaPilot41
FordMustang26
FordEdge31
ChevroletTraverse29
ToyotaTundra45
JeepPatriot32
ToyotaPrius56
HyundaiSanta Fe36
KiaSorento32
ChevroletImpala35
FordFlex35
Mazda341
MazdaCX-950
GMCTerrain50
MazdaMiata35

Don’t see your car listed above? Click here to find yours.

If you notice you’re reaching empty quicker than you should, or you have leaking fuel, Your Mechanic recommends having an inspection performed as soon as possible.


About the Author:

Dawn is a Digital Content Editor who has been with Graham Media Group since April 2013. She graduated from Texas State University with a degree in electronic media.