As the weather warms up, many people are hitting the road for summer vacation. Here's a few tips for saving money on fuel.
The Alliance to Save Energy calculated that the average U.S. household will spend nearly 3,500 dollars fueling up vehicles this year, even with lower gas prices. The good news is that maintaining your vehicle and using smart driving techniques can make the gas in your tank last longer – and put a few dollars back in your pocket. And, a well-maintained vehicle emits fewer pollutants that contribute to ground-level ozone pollution on hot summer days.
Viewer Tip: Whether you’re driving cross-country or making your daily commute, these tips can help save fuel and money.
- Keep tires properly inflated. You’ll increase mileage by up to 3.3 percent and save about 60 dollars per year. Check the vehicle owner’s manual for the proper pressure levels.
- Lose the extra baggage. Leave any unnecessary items at home to lighten the load – for every 100 extra pounds, mileage drops by about 2 percent. That’s about 40 dollars wasted.
- Chill out. Aggressive driving – speeding, quick acceleration and rapid braking – can drop gas mileage significantly at highway speeds, to the tune of about 980 dollars per year! Around town, aggressive driving can drop mileage by about 5 percent, costing 98 dollars per year.
- Kill the engine. Idling gets zero miles per gallon. Depending on the size of your vehicle’s engine and how much air conditioning you use, you could waste up to half a gallon of fuel per hour sitting idle. Turning off the engine and restarting uses minimal fuel and reduces emissions.
Visit http://ase.org/resources/fuel-efficiency-top-tips-save-gas-and-money for more smart driving tips.
More tips from the allience to save energy:
- low down. Gas mileage usually decreases rapidly above 60 miles per hour (MPH). DOE says each 5 MPH over 60 is like paying an additional 29 cents per gallon for gas.
- Avoid excessive idling. Idling can waste a quarter to a half gallon of fuel per hour, depending on engine size and air conditioner use. But it only takes a few seconds’ worth of fuel to restart your engine, according to DOE.
- Use cruise control. Using cruise control on the highway helps you maintain a constant speed and, in most cases, will save gas and money.
- Engage the overdrive gear. With overdrive gearing, your car’s engine speed goes down, saving gas and reducing engine wear.
- Combine errands into one trip. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as a multipurpose trip covering the same distance when the engine is warm.
- Beat the traffic. When possible, drive during off-peak hours to avoid stop-and-go or bumper-to-bumper traffic conditions, thereby reducing gas costs, time and stress!
- Ditch the junk in the trunk. Remove unnecessary items from your vehicle. An extra 100 pounds in your trunk could reduce mileage by 2%.
- Lose that loaded roof rack. Taking of off your bikes, luggage and anything else you’ve been lugging around longer than needed can decrease your fuel economy by 5%.