Saving Money on Gas

Wallet Getting sucked dry at the pump?

Here are some useful hints and tips to help you save some of your hard earned dollars when filling up your gas tank.

Maintenance/Car related
> Perform regular maintenance regularly. Having fresh clean oil and a clean air filter can do wonders for your gas mileage. Your engine will run smoother and be able to breathe better making it more efficient. Have your oil changed every 3000 miles and check your air filter every 6000 miles, if it looks dirty replace it. Check your other fluids (anti-freeze/coolant, transmission fluid) regularly and fill them appropriately, this will not only keep them in working order, but will also help you spot minor problems before they become major.
> Use the lowest grade of gasoline possible. Buying a higher octane rated gas is a waste of money unless your car specifically asks for it. Higher octane gas is made for one purpose, to reduce something called “knock” in engines, and unless your car requires a higher octane rating, buying it wont do anything for your car and end up costing you more. You can usually find out if the manufacturer recommends a higher octane rating by looking in your owner’s manual or inside the cover for your gas tank. If your car recommends a high octane gas then give it what it wants or you run the risk of doing serious damage to your engine, but if there is no recommendation, then get the cheapest stuff available.
> Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Having too little air in your tires will decrease your mileage, not to mention cause them to wear improperly.
> Remove excess weight from your vehicle. Make sure your trunk is empty of anything that you don’t need to have in their (bowling balls, sports equipment, tools). Carrying around excess weight will also cause your gas mileage to drop, if you don’t need it, take it out and store it somewhere else until you do.

Habits
> Accelerate as conservatively as possible. Mashing down on the gas to get up to speed, while it can be fun, will use considerably more gas than if you ease your way up to it.
> Don’t ride the brake. Its not only bad for your brakes its bad for your mileage as well by making your engine work harder to make or maintain speed.
> If you have cruise control use it, if you don’t look into getting it (some sort of cruise control is often available for most cars as an after market ad on). Cruise control is much better at managing the throttle of your car than any mortal human could ever dream of being, this better management will lead to better mileage.
> Avoid traffic as much as possible. It takes relatively little effort (gas) to keep your car going at a constant speed, what sucks gas and kills your mileage is acceleration. The more you can avoid slow and go or stop and go traffic the better, even if it means going a little farther, the difference in mileage will often make up for the extra miles unless the detour around traffic is excessive.
> Don’t speed. Almost all cars are designed to reach peak efficiency at around 55mph. Going over 55mph will start to eat at that efficiency, the faster you go, the less efficient you become. Oh yeah, and speeding is illegal anyway.

While none of these hints and tips will alone lead you to any great savings at the pump, the more you practice the better results you will see, and over a long period of time even little amounts of savings will add up. Drive safe.

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