Are you a frequent air traveler? If you are, you’ve probably seen a fuel truck pulling up to an aircraft to start refueling. But have you ever stopped to think about how much fuel a Boeing 737 can hold?
Well, the fuel capacity of this airplane varies depending on the specific model and generation. According to Boeing.com, the 737-600/-700/-800/-900ER models have a maximum fuel capacity of 6,875 gallons. The wings on the above models are able to hold 30% more fuel then previous generations.
Now that you know the fuel capacity, how long do you think that lasts?
How Much Fuel Does a 737 Use per Hour?
The Boeing 737 consumes one gallon per second, which translates to 3,600 gallons per hour. This means that in a typical 5-hour flight, it burns up to 18,000 gallons of fuel.
Question is, just how far can the Boeing 737 fly on a full tank? The 737 can cruise in air for two hours or less. This is because it doesn’t have as large a fuel capacity as its rivals like the Boeing 747.
The latter is said to have a total fuel capacity of 47,000+ gallons. With the same consumption rate of 3,600 gallons an hour, it means this aircraft can fly for no less than 10 hours on a full tank.
That said, newer variants of the Boeing 737 are fitted with auxiliary tanks to increase their fuel capacity. For instance, the 737 Max 9 and 737 Max 10 contain one auxiliary tank each. Others like the Boeing Business Jet Max 7 contain up to 9 auxiliary tanks.
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Why Is a Boeing 737 So Popular?
Despite recent concerns regarding safety, the Boeing 737 variants continue to be the most popular aircrafts ever. Here’s why:
Reduced Operating Costs
An important point to note is that the Boeing 737 runs on LEAP engines, which boast remarkable fuel- and cost-efficiency.
This, in turn, allows the airlines that use them to keep their costs to a minimum. This means that there are more people willing to travel through these airlines because their flights are more affordable.
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Yet another reason that makes the Boeing 737 so prominent is its sustainability. As seen from this analytical report, it has a 40% smaller noise footprint than other aircrafts. And when it comes to emissions, it also boasts a 14% decrease in CO₂ emissions.
Compared to other popular aircrafts – like the Airbus A320neo – the Boeing 737 requires 20% less airframe maintenance. This is what the company states on its website:
“From the early stages of airplane development, the 737-600/-700/-800/-900 team strove to lower maintenance costs and give the airlines the airplane with the most competitive operating cost possible.
The target for overall reduced airframe maintenance costs was 15 percent, relative to the earlier 737-300/-400/-500 family, which had set the standard for lowest operating costs in its class.“
Generally, the 737 is regarded as one of the easiest aircrafts to maintain. This allows the maintenance to be conducted within a shorter period; hence, saving its owners both time and money.
Unknown to many, an aircraft’s maintenance expenses actually consume a large chunk of money.
On average, they account for about 10% to 20% of the airplane-related operating costs (AROC). Though these proportions appear small, they represent huge sums of money.
Put bluntly, giant aircrafts like Boeing spend up to $1 billion or more solely on maintenance. So the fact that the Boeing 737 has lower maintenance costs is a big deal.
Appeals to Both Passengers and Flight Crew
The Boeing 737 is adored passengers and pilots in equal measure.
When you look at the flight deck, you’ll find more advanced and bigger displays that significantly enhance a pilot’s experience.
As for the passengers, they get to enjoy a quieter journey thanks to the integration of cutting-edge engine technology. If you’ve had an opportunity to fly in this aircraft, you may have also noticed bigger storage space in the overhead bin.
Moreover, the windows in this aircraft are larger. This allows passengers to enjoy panoramic views.
The final reason that explains the popularity of the Boeing 737 is its longer range.
Allow me to illustrate by comparing the Boeing 737 Max 7 to its Airbus competitor, the A319neo. The Boeing 737 Max 7 can carry a maximum of 178 passengers and has a flight range of 7,130 km. Meanwhile, the A319neo has a maximum of 160 seats and a range of just 6,850 km.
The best part is that the Boeing aircraft offers these benefits all while operating at a lower cost. Impressive, right?
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Which Boeing Plane Is the Most Popular?
Without a doubt, the 737-800 is Boeing’s most famous jet. This conclusion is based on the deliveries that have taken place in the past few decades.
If you look at the aircraft’s output between 2000 and 2020, it’s fallen to less than 100 per year just four times. And back in 2016, the company delivered a whopping 411 jets of this model in that year alone.