Hi so I was just doing a flight KLAX - KJFK and landed at KLAX because the fuel remaining said I only had 3 hours despite the fact I put 8 hours in. Could someone please explain why this is?
The fuel remaining is based on normal engine thrust at cruise. What engine % were you at when it said 3h?
Did you have headwind? That can use up more fuel
As said above, this estimate is for cruise. You need to finish your climb for the rate of fuel consumption to level out which will give a more accurate prediction. Also, generally you need to put an hour of fuel greater than suggested by the estimate, increasing this the longer the flight will be. Plan your flight using simbrief.com and fpltoif.com to get an accurate estimate.
The best thing is to fly with a fuel altonomy that you can reach until your destination and in case of wind change you alternate, even if it is an alternative to change the runway. I’ve had a similar experience. And another tip, whenever you take off see which airports will be closest to your route and leave with an alternative airport in your plan.
Everyone else above is correct, but also: as you burn more fuel, you will become lighter, and so require less fuel — boosting your fuel economy.
Example if confused...
Yesterday, I took off from London in a 747-400 headed for Nairobi with 105,000kg of fuel. The flight was estimated to take at least seven hours and its distance was 3800nm. As soon as I took off and began to climb, my fuel remaining indicator was coloured orange. As I continued to climb, it went orange. At cruise, it was also orange for a bit. I left the flight overnight once at cruise and this morning landed with 29,000kg of fuel still in the tanks after parking.
It is common for your fuel indicator to show orange or red at the beginning of a longer flight and is to be expected. Just trust your fuel calculation (done manually or through sites like the one I have attached via link below) and your redundancy measures (e.g. diversion airports, extra fuel, etcetera).
FPL to IF (once again, attached via link below) will also give you the option to build in step-climbs — an aviation realism that boosts fuel economy with the principle that the more fuel burnt, the lighter an aircraft becomes.
Thanks. Will do.
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