Gas prices are on the rise again! Here are some tips to help you conserve gas and save money:
- Have your car tuned regularly. Cars in poor running condition use more gasoline. An engine tune-up can improve car fuel economy by an average of 1 mile per gallon.
- Check your tire pressure to keep your tires properly inflated. Under-inflated tires can decrease fuel economy by up to 1 mile per gallon. Over-inflated tires can also reduce your fuel efficiency, so don't overfill.
- Slow down. The faster you drive, the more gasoline your car uses. Driving at 65 mph rather than 55 mph reduces fuel economy by about 2 miles per gallon.
- Avoid jackrabbit starts. Abrupt starts require about twice as much gasoline as gradual starts. Try to accelerate slowly when leaving the stop light. Pace your driving. Unnecessary speedups, slowdowns and stops can decrease fuel economy by up to 2 miles per gallon.
- Drive the speed limit. Stay alert and drive steadily, not erratically. Keep a reasonable, safe distance from the car ahead of you and anticipate traffic conditions.
- Use the air conditioner sparingly. If you have a lower setting, use it. Turn it on until the car gets cool, then turn it off and let the fan circulate the cool air. The use of air conditioning can reduce fuel economy by as much as 2 miles per gallon under certain speeds and operating conditions.
- Avoid lengthy engine idling. If you are stuck in traffic, at the bank, or at a fast food restaurant and you don't think you are going to go anywhere in the next five minutes, turn your car off.
- You no longer need to warm your car up for long periods of time, especially new cars. New cars are made to run when cold.
- No need to buy the highest priced gasoline. Most cars are built to run on regular unleaded. Check your owner's manual or consult a mechanic to determine if this is the case for your car,
- Plan your trips carefully. Combine short trips into one to do all your errands in a single outing.
- Arrange car pools with co-workers to share the cost of commuting to work. Walk, bike or run to your intended location whenever possible.
- Keep your windows closed when traveling at high speeds. Open windows cause additional drag and lower your gas mileage. At high speeds, an open window can use more gas than many air conditioners (especially if they are on a low setting).
- Take unneeded items out of the car to lighten the load. Don't haul extra weight in the trunk or cargo area of your vehicle. A heavier vehicle uses more gasoline.
- Don't fill up when the price is too high. Wait for the price to go down before you fill up your tank. Filling up your tank when the price is peaking lets gas companies know that you are willing to pay ridiculous prices for gasoline.
- Seek to purchase vehicles that get very good gas mileage. The difference between 20 miles-per-gallon and 40 miles-per-gallon is huge. For instance, there are many hybrid gas-electric vehicles in the market place today that are getting from 40-55 miles per gallon.