Fuel Savings

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by whacko, Mar 22, 2011.

  1. whacko

    whacko Junior Member

    Wondering how you guys feel about your fuel savings running your bikes to work and if it justifies the purchase or not. Here is my commute story.......anyone else out there use their HD as a daily commuter?

    I drive 68 miles one way to work and I did the math last week and in the car running regular gas I spend $17 a day on the commute.....with the FXDC running PREMIUM I will spend about $10 a day! I save about $100 a month on gas running the bike an average of 4 days a week in the summer!!!!!!!! Can't say it completely justifies the purchase of a $13,000 bike but it helps!!!!!!
  2. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Guest

    Yep, I do not own a car I figure I can run 2 weeks easy on a full tank to work and back 20 miles a day plus errands
  3. Porter

    Porter Junior Member

    So you are looking at 2176 miles/month in just commuting.

    You also have to also look into maintenace costs and what you are willing or not willing to do yourself (if you don't have the tools and the manual you have to buy them):
    Rear tires generally last ~12K miles as an estimate.
    Fronts: usually double, but motoccycle tire are expensive compared to most car tires. Add labor and you are looking at +$200 for each. I don't put my own tires on.....

    How often do you plan on changing you fluids and what type you use can have big differences in cost. Hopefully you will be doing this yourself, but if you are going to pay a dealer: add the labor. 3000, 5000, 10000 miles per change: it is all up to you

    Checking the clutch, clutch cable, belt tension, general lubrication etc are other items that if you don't do yourself, and you want to keep up on, would significantly add to the operation costs.

    I am not trying to talk you out of it. I do 500 miles a week most of the year (Ice and snow stop me, but that is about it). The better fuel mileage is nice, but for me the reason is riding. To me it is a better way to travel and it makes me think about what I am doing and appreciate each day. That is worth it for me, even if I got less mpg than a car. Also, I would not call a HD a commuter bike. It has too much style to it. When I think of the term "commuter vehicle" it has a neglected, utilitarian vibe to it. A commuter vehicle doesn't have lots of chrome, a V twin proudly on display and a sound you want people to hear...so while I may be technically "commuting" I am also riding in style. Most people commute to jobs they don't like, and there for dislike the commute as well. On a HD, you love the commute, no matter where you are headed at the end....
  4. Duane53

    Duane53 Active Member

    For me it's just the love of riding my bike. Yes I do save a lot in gas over my truck, but I'll ride my bike anytime the weather lets me.
  5. ultra...good

    ultra...good Banned

    I don't know how much of a savings there really is, when I factor in how much the bike cost, how much more oil changes, tires, and other maintenance is. Short term, you do pay less at the pump, but then again in the long term it is probably a wash. My ultra gets in the upper 30's to lower 40's and my car avgs. upper 20's to lower 30's.
    Either way, it is supposed to snow (sorry for the curse word) around 8-10" here tonight through tomorrow. I just got back from a 3200+ mile trip so I can hold out for a bit longer, but the 7 day forecast says it won't be into the 40's for at least 8 days. What did I do wrong? It's just not fair..................
  6. whacko

    whacko Junior Member


    You are absolutely right! I was not saying that the fuel mileage justifies commutng......I was saying that my commute 4 days a week saved me 100 bucks a month on fuel which is only a bonus! I definitely spend more than that on the maintenance! I plan to do a full service every 5,000. I put 8,000 on the bike last season and did the changes at 1,000 and 6,000 then did a full service before picking it up from dealer storage so i'm good to go with fresh oil for the season.

    No way that my $13k Harley is justified by the fuel efficiency.....it is just a small bunus to take the edge off........and I mainly ride to work because it gives me something to look forward to when the work day is through!!!!!!! I get to cruise home instead of just drive home!!!!!!!!!

    If I wanted to ride to completely save gas I would have a 500cc "beater" that cost me $2,000! Then I may actually say I was riding to save money but could not live with myself riding a pathetic bike! :D
  7. mat 60

    mat 60 Senior Member

    Well ,I dont think I would leave my bike in a parking lot all day unless thair was a safe place for it. .Mabe I need to go see the doc again?:D..I would drive the car, I try not to spend much time worrying about gas but it hasnt hit five gallon yet..:D
  8. Dr.Evil

    Dr.Evil Junior Member

    Living in Michigan it does not make as much sense as it would in a southern 12month state. But what I do know, is I save no money on gass because I ride for pleasure many more miles than I would drive in my truck. But a long commute would pay for the fun miles so that's not a bad trade off. I thought of these things because I will have to change jobs soon and I may have a longer commute. I know I would not like to ride into the morning sun every day.
  9. whacko

    whacko Junior Member

    Good discussion here! Added HD maintenance costs probably make the fuel savings null and void but I think commuting to work on my harley is awesome! As far as the comment about a safe place to park I'm a full time member of the Army National Guard so the parking lot is under survailence!!!! And I park my bike next to about 10 other bikes in the summer.......more than half of those are HD!!!!
  10. Billbo

    Billbo Junior Member

    I realize you did say "on a Harley" --- but IF you bought one of those little 150cc scooters (I see a lot here in La. ) for about 3500 and it got about 100 mpg.........then you would soon be saving a bunch of money!!!!:bigsmiley12:

    Please -- NOT trying to put anyone on anything other than a HD.