How to Save Money on Gas And Improve Mileage
August 12, 2009
Who wants to get gas for free? All of us who don't live under a rock know how unstoppable the cost of fuel rocket these days. But what are we to do, when we've got a handful of important expenses as well? Here, we've compiled a handful of the most effective fuel-saving and mileage-improving tips that smart drivers have used successfully. And there's a bonus. Commit these to memory and practice them. You'll soon find yourself relieved from time-consuming and energy-draining stress. It might even save your life.
Give Your Breaks a Break. The break pedal consumes about just as much (maybe even more) fuel as the gas pedal. Go easy on it. The answer is simple physics: When you're going fast, it'll cost you more force to stop the momentum (i.e., break from your current speed), and it would be harder to get back to the same speed.
Don't floor it. It is unnecessary to accelerate just to catch the red light, or as soon as the light turns green. There's most likely another stop light in the next intersection anyway. Go smooth on the gas pedal and you'll surely spend less on gas. This is very advisable when you're on the highway.
Go light. Remove unnecessary things from your car, especially heavy ones. The heavier your vehicle's load, the more gas it requires to move and maintain speed.
Find a good station and join its loyalty club. A number of gas stations offer marked-down prices for its loyalty club members.
Fill up on Wednesdays... For some reason, statistical reports show that prices of gas are lowest on Wednesdays. Just keep in mind that this data was based on long periods of time, and does not apply to Wednesday.
...Or three days before a holiday. Don't you notice that the cost of fuel almost always rises astronomically during holidays? Beat it.
Go techie. There's another reason to use Global Positioning System (GPS). Armed with GPS, you can navigate your way on the roads and choose the shortest distance with the least amount of traffic to your destination. Steer clear from hillsides and thoroughfares with numerous stoplights.
A/C on the expressway. Opening your windows when you're driving at low speed not only lets fresh air come in but also increases your mileage. On the other hand, opening your windows on the highway will require more gas consumption because of drag. Eight percent of fuel consumption is attributed to heavy air-conditioning.
Let it rest. Just because you've got the bucks to refuel doesn't mean it's a good idea. A car is a machine, after all, and has to be parked and allowed to cool down after heavy work. It would also be good for your body if you walk, use the bike, or ride the train or bus every now and then. If you're not into public transportation, try joining a carpool. It's a triple whammy: your car could rest, you'll save on gas, and you'll make new friends!
Keep it on. There's only one situation in which turning the car off spends more fuel: when it's already on. This is because cranking your car requires more fuel than when it's on idle mode.
Drive and stay safe. No matter how much you save from doing all these tricks and others, it would all be pointless if you get wrecked because of 'trying to save gas'. Practicing safe driving would save you a lot more cash than risky touch-and-go driving. The cost of your life—and others'—is infinitely higher than the highest savings you can get on your gas costs.
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