Pain at the Pump: 5 Ways to Save Money by Improving Your Gas Mileage

Frugalful | 12:58 AM |

As gas prices continue to rise and rise, making sure you're getting good gas mileage has almost never been so important. Everyone hates filling up their car and thinking, "I could have bought something with that money." While gas mileage is something that is hugely dependent on what kind of car you have, people have a tendency to hinder their fuel economy without even realizing it. Whether it's skipping out on maintenance or driving inefficiently, people actually lower their MPG. However, these are things that can be easily resolved with the right information.

Lighten Your Car

Some people like to think that hauling all their junk in the back of their car does no harm. Unfortunately, it does. Having a heavy car prevents you from getting the maximum amount of gas mileage out of your car. The engine has to work that much harder to keep the car going! Only keep the necessities in your car. A few t-shirts and water bottles aren't going to make a difference. However, when you start using your car as a mobile storage facility, you're going to run into some problems at the pump.

Stop Speeding

This is probably going to be one of the more useful tips. The faster you're going, the more your engine has to work to push through the air. People love going 90 MPH down the highway and wondering why their gas seems to be getting sucked out of their tank. This is an example of inefficient driving. Drive around 60-65 MPH to get the most out of your fuel economy. Save yourself the gas and the speeding ticket, and keep your speed below 65.

Don't Jump on the Accelerator

This is yet another tip most drivers need to learn. Jumping on the accelerator when the light turns green is a waste of gas in itself. You arrive at exactly the same destination, albeit three seconds faster, but you used up three times the amount of gas to do it. You might get a small thrill from trying to race another car off the light, but it isn't worth the strain on your car or your wallet.

Properly Inflate Your Tires

Most tires are at their most efficient when at 40 PSI. It's always best to check. For instance, OTR tires and normal tires obviously have different needs as far as air pressure goes. Either way, properly inflated tires helps with MPG immensely. Over or under inflated tires will hurt your gas mileage. Keeping your tires properly inflated is a very inexpensive way to lower your gas bill.

Avoid Idling

Idling is using up your gas without actually going anywhere. When you can help it, keep from idling and just turn the car off. This will save your car and the environment. Especially during winter months, when drivers will leave their car idling, this can run up the gas bill significantly. Grab a pair of gloves for the cold steering wheel and wear an extra layer, and you can save a lot of money at the pump.

All in all, there are many more ways to save money at the pump. However, these are the best solutions to a driver's most common problems.

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