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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After reading Gryphon's posts in this thread about tachometers, I decided to order an Echometer for msyelf. It's a little guage pod that measures instantaneous MPG, average MPG, revs, and MPH. Sort of like the scanguage II, but is a bit more simple and is pod-shaped instead of a long rectangle. I decided to start this thread so we can share our experiences with this new gadget.

I got mine from PartsShowRoom.com. Though they had no ratings on Froogle, they had the cheapest price I could find at $73.78 shipped to CA, so I decided to risk it. They followed through and a couple of days later it arrived via FedEx.

Installation was very easy. I put mine on the right side of the pod behind the steering wheel (opposite to where Gryphon put his--pics coming soon). I like this position because it is more to the center of the car, so I don't have to look that far away from the road and my other pods, and it does not block any other gages or warning lights. I also reset my mileage counter often, so on the right it does not block that button.

The instructions say that it comes configured to automatically calibrate itsself for 2008 and newer cars. However, I'm not sure if it does so for the Smart. In city driving, I was getting between 2 and 8 mpg while on the throttle, and 15mpg while coasting to a red light. On the freeway, while maintaining 60mph it was reading 12mpg. While going 60mph down a light slope (the 2nd half of the Bay Bridge) I was getting 38mpg. The instruction manual says that some cars need a bit of callibration by setting the engine displacement and a couple other variables. I'll try this when I get home today and post what my settings are, if any.

At any rate, regardless of the accuracy, it has a nifty set of bars that shows you when you are driving at your highest efficiency. The less bars displaying the more efficient you are. I'm really surprised at just how costly accelerating is after watching those bars go.



Anyone else have some good or bad experiences with the ecometer?
 

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Nice Carl. I like that. Several people have approached me wanting to put a Scangauge in their cars only for of the MPG meter. This is a good, cheap, pleasing to the eye solution that has only what they need. I'll have to hit them up for this instead.

What does the gauge face happen to measure in relation to the pod faces. You see where I'm going. :wink: A nice replacement for the pod clock haters out there if it was the right size. Gut the clock and put this in it's place.

p.s. my Scangauge does what I need it to do but for most people this is probably a much better option.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sure thing. When I get home this afternoon I'll post photos of where I installed it, how I snaked the wire (without cutting or fastening anything), and different modes. :D
 

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What does the gauge face happen to measure in relation to the pod faces. You see where I'm going. :wink: A nice replacement for the pod clock haters out there if it was the right size. Gut the clock and put this in it's place.
I agree, much more useable than 2 clocks. Also waiting to see if someone gives it a try.
 

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The scan gauge can clear error codes and has alot more features. I'm already locked in with having the scan gauge.
 

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The scan gauge can clear error codes and has alot more features. I'm already locked in with having the scan gauge.
Exactly. Also, did you know a Yaris 5dr has 2 extra doors and can carry 5 people :p....but it seems like some Smart owners don't NEED the extra 2 doors and ability to carry those extra people.:rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
. . . and here it is

Good points Bum-bling-B and ForestAcademy. Both Scanguage and Ecometer (and Kiwi I suppose) have their purposes. I chose the Ecometer because it is easy to install and nicely displays what I need it to without compromising on dashboard real estate and aesthetics (at least not that much) without hacking into my car. So here are the details and pics.

Turns out the Smart needs some callibration, as it apparently does not broadcast the size of the engine over the OBDII. The reason my ecometer was displaying an average of 10mpg was because it thought I was using a 4 litre engine! To correct this, hold the right button while plugging it into the OBD II port. It will display the engine size (4.0) and you can then press the right button over and over again until it cycles past 12 and then go up to 1.0. Then push the left button and wait for it to say EFF. Then push the left button again and you should be set. You can redo the steps and set efficiency after seeing the EFF code to increase or decrease after looking at a full gas tank's mileage compared to your average mileage for that tank as displayed on the device.

Below are some pics of the various modes. Sorry some of them are a bit blurry. I had low light and I was trying to hold a DSLR camera in Av mode (no flash) while driving :eek:

Average MPG mode after my first drive around the block


MPH MODE (sorry its so dark--it says "19.3")


Instant MPG Mode (while going down a hill with my foot off the gas)


RPM Mode (it read 3.14 for 3140 RPM. Look to the tach pod above for accuracy)


And now some photos on how to fish the wire with no hacking, cutting, attaching, taping, or fastening. The gauge comes with its own 3M industrial-velcro-like sticky fastener which as held up quite well so far. The rest is quick and dirty but it works for now.

Putting the wire behind the steering column hides it nicely


Then fish it over the back of the left cubby


Then down to where there is a screw in the bottom-left part of the fabric part. This screw can be removed and the wire fished behind it. Re-attach the screw and the wire fits snugly and does not have to be attached anywhere. It will be pretty taught when plugged into the OBDII so it does not dangle below the dash or get caught on your feet.
 

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That last photo suggests frustration. How did the installation make you feel? Did you have a good childhood?

Sorry - trying to sound like a bad shrink but it doesn't come off right without the transe music that's going through my mind right now.

I'LL BE RIGHT THERE, MOTHER!
 

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Legible without a magnifying glass for some of us. Thanks for the photos. Do you find it useful? What do you use it for most? Thanks
karl
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Ya apologies for the blurry pics. I encourage anyone else who gets one to post some better ones :)

I've been finding it very useful so far. I have been using it for instantanious readouts of my MPG and the "green bar" is useful for getting to know how to drive with optimum efficiency real-time. I haven't yet finished this tank, and I'll only see results after the next tank, so it will be a few weeks before I see if it really helps improve my MPG that much. I'm on fuelly so I'm going to mark this and track my MPG there to see if there is an improvement. As you can see I have a lot of room for it compared to many other smart owners :)

 

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I agree, much more useable than 2 clocks. Also waiting to see if someone gives it a try.
The analog clock is a wonderful item for those of us who regularly wear magnifying glasses to see things up close. The little digits on the LCD display don't show up very well.
 

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Not to throw cold water on these devices, but one needs to bare in mind that they will be kind of close as far as mpg and gallons remaining ect, but not spot on. I currently have several cars with factory built ins, and have had them going back to my 81 Caddy 4-6-8, and that has been my observation. That said, the idea of being able to read and reset fault codes, will prompt me to get a Scangauge or Kiwi for my 09 Passion.
Rich
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The analog clock is a wonderful item for those of us who regularly wear magnifying glasses to see things up close. The little digits on the LCD display don't show up very well.
I also found that I can't see the digital clock very well when I have my sunglasses on. I'll keep my analog clock for now.
 

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I picked up the ecometer. I plugged in into the OBD port and began to use it. It did need the Displacement adjustment made to change from 4 liters to a 1 liter engine.

The instantaneous mileage feature is a fun gauge to play with. On level ground in 5th gear my smart gets mileage in the mid 50s. The switch over place between 4th and 5th it runs about 44 mpg. I'm still playing with this.

The tach feature is consistent with the tach in the pods.

The speedometer runs a little lower than the smart. My analog guage reads 51 with the ecometer reading 48.1. The difference is about right. The ecometer jumps in 0.6 mph increments.

A feature that would be nice is a kph readout. I have a trip planned to Canada and our smart does not have the metric markings.

I'll send along more impressions as they come.
 

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Just FYI on the ecometer:

I've had my ecometer on the car now for a little more than 400 miles, about 2 fill-ups. After computing my actual gas milage I have re-calibrated my ecometer to 78% EFF (efficiency). At that setting I seem to be reading about 0.2 mpg below the calculated milage. The next step available is 79% EFF and that makes the ecometer read about 0.4 mpg too high. In that taking the gallons used vs. distance traveled method is, in itself, prone to variation due to differences in fill-ups, please don't take this information as definitive, just informational. YMMV:D

The accuracy of the ecometer's speedometer function is more accurate than the smart's speedometer. At 70 mph indicated on the smart speedo the ecometer reads 67.8 mph and my Garmin GPS says 67.1 mph.

I've tried to get useful information from the ecometer's instantaneous mpg readout but it varies so rapidly that it is difficult to interpret. I have attempted to find a smooth, level length of lightly traveled roadway and to run the car using the cruise control for speed stability, but the instantaneous mode is still difficult to use. I'd like the instantaneous mode to use just a little time based averaging (a couple of seconds?) to smooth out the information.

The smart's analog pod tachometer is, for me, easier to use than the ecometer's digital readout, but both show about the same accuracy.

The sticky-backed industrial plastic velcro hold-down doesn't stick very well to the cleaned surface of my steering column cover as I have bumped it loose several times now while cleaning that area. I think I'm going to screw mount it when I decide on it's permanent location.

Overall, I'm satisfied with the performance and legibility of the ecometer. It accomplishes the purpose for which I wanted it.
 
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