How To Reset Distance To Empty?

If you are reading this article, I’m assuming you know a little bit about DTE, which means distance till empty. The DTE is a display feature that tells you how many miles you have to cover before your car runs out of gas. Most people believe the distance till empty feature automatically resets itself once you refill your tank. But what if I tell you that you can reset the distance to empty if it doesn’t reset itself after filling your gas tank? Will that be interesting?

That’s what this article is all about. In this article, you’ll learn how to reset distance to empty if it doesn’t reset after filling your gas tank.

A little over five months ago, I published an article titled What Does a DTE Mean on a Car? If you haven’t read it, I recommend you do so because it covers the fundamental of this article. If you already know the meaning of distance to empty, jump right in as we are about to take a flight on how to reset it.

distance to empty in car

How to reset distance to empty

Under perfect conditions, you don’t need to do anything to reset the distance to empty indicator. The indicator automatically resets itself whenever you refuel the gas tank. When you refill the gas tank, the indicator will show how much mileage to cover with the current amount of gas in the tank.

However, if you bought only a small amount of fuel, it may not be enough to reflect on the distance to empty display feature on your car. In this case, the only feasible solution is to add extra fuel or wait for the system to recalibrate and update.

If your distance to empty is not working even after refilling the gas tank, you may have to reset the system. Every vehicle has a different reset approach. So, it is essential to consult your owner’s manual for steps on how to reset distance to empty on Ford Explorer or your specific car model.

It’s a simple issue if your miles until empty is not working or updating even after getting gas but the fuel gauge changes. Here’s a simplified step on how to reset distance to empty on Nissan vehicles.

  • Go to the menu.
  • Click on average miles per gallon.
  • Press Okay to reset
  • Click on yes

This should update the distance to empty. Here’s a YouTube video for a visual clarification on how to reset distance to empty on Nissan Rogue and other Nissan models. Kindly note that this procedure is for Nissan cars. Other car models may have different reset approaches. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you calculate the distance to empty?

Distance to empty is calculated with the distance you can drive with the amount of fuel in your gas tank. To calculate the distance to empty in car, calculate the gallons of fuel remaining in the gas tank with the average miles per gallon.

What is the distance to empty sensor?

The distance to empty is a display feature in many cars that tells you the distance you will cover before you run out of gas.

The distance to empty does not use any physical sensor in any part of the vehicle. Instead, it is a software-based feature that uses data from car sensors like fuel level sensors, odometer, and engine management system to determine how long the fuel in the gas tank will cover.

Can you reset a car to 0 miles?

While you can reset your car mileage, it is illegal to do so. Mileage tampering is an illegal act in all US States that tends to deceive intending buyers of the car’s actual value and conditions.

To be precise, while you can reset your car to 0 miles, always think twice before doing so because it is fraud and can attract a fine of $10,000. Is the tempering of the odometer worth the 10k fine? Or do you just want to engage in a fraud?

How many miles can a Toyota run on empty?

On most Toyota vehicles, you still have 2 to 3 gallons left in the gas tank when low fuel light appears on the dashboard. This is equivalent to 30 to 50 miles, depending on your fuel consumption and driving style.

Remember, the higher your speed, the more gas the vehicle will consume, meaning less mileage to cover. So, if you want to cover more mileage, you have to drive at a moderate speed, around 60 to 70 MPH.

Is distance to empty accurate?

The distance to empty is accurate to a certain degree. The precise mileage to cover depends on your driving style, miles per gallon, and the driving you are doing, that is, whether you are driving on off-roads or highway pavements and if you are using the air conditioning system or any other system that may consume more fuel.

Final Words

This article has provided various steps on how to reset distance to empty. But to sum it up, under perfect conditions, you don’t have to do anything for the distance to empty to reset. Instead, the reset happens automatically once you refill the fuel tank. However, the DTE may not update if the fuel you added is too small. So you have to ensure you added enough fuel before worrying about the DTE.

Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a certified mechanic with over a decade of experience in the mechanic garage, and he has over five years of experience in the writing industry. He started writing automotive articles to share his garage experience with car enthusiasts and armature mechanics. If he is not in the garage fixing challenging mechanical problems, he is writing automotive repair guides, buyer’s guides, and car and tools comparisons.

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