Tips to Combat Gas Prices
There are several simple steps you can take to combat rising gas prices. The most important place to start is at the gas pump; buy only the octane level gas you need. The higher the octane, the higher the price. Check your owner's manual to determine the right octane level for your car.
Tips to increase your car's gas mileage.
Drive more efficiently
- Do not speed. The faster you drive, the more fuel you use. For example, driving at 65 miles per hour (mph), rather than 55 mph, increases fuel consumption by 20 percent. Driving at 75 mph, rather than 65 mph, increases fuel consumption by another 25 percent.
- Use overdrive gears. Overdrive gears improve the fuel economy of your car during highway driving. Your car's engine speed decreases when you use overdrive. This reduces both fuel consumption and engine wear.
- Use cruise control. Using cruise control on highway trips will help you maintain a constant speed and, in most cases, reduce your fuel consumption.
- Avoid unnecessary idling. Turn off the engine if you anticipate a lengthy wait. Unnecessary idling wastes fuel, costs you money and pollutes the air.
- Combine errands. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as one trip covering the same distance when the engine is warm.
- Remove excess weight from the trunk. Avoid carrying unneeded items, especially heavy ones. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk reduces a typical car's fuel economy by one to two percent.
Maintain your car
- Keep your engine tuned. A poorly tuned engine can increase fuel consumption by as much as 10 to 20 percent depending on a car's condition.
- Keep your tires properly inflated and aligned. Car manufacturers must place a label in the car stating the correct tire pressure. Underinflated tires cause fuel consumption to increase by six percent.
- Change your oil. Clean oil reduces wear caused by friction between moving parts and removes harmful substances from the engine.
- Check and replace air filters regularly. Your car's air filter keeps impurities in the air from damaging internal engine components. Clogged filters can cause up to a 10 percent increase in fuel consumption.