Smart Spending

Ten Tips to Reduce Your Gas Bill

Next to food, air and water, most of us require regular trips to the gas station for our other life necessity – gasoline. Gas has become so expensive there will soon be armed guards at every gas station protecting the supply of gas and the cash in the register.

As gas is now so costly, everyone is trying to save on its use. While buying a fuel-efficient car is one way of reducing fuel costs, it is an option that many of us cannot afford.  So, here are a few tips to help you reduce your gas bill.

  1. Observe The Speed Limit – Though you might feel as if you are being left far behind, driving at high speeds drastically decreases your fuel mileage. For every five miles per hour you drive above 60 MPH, calculate another thirty cents per gallon for your fuel costs.
  2. Check Tire Pressure Frequently – Low air pressure in your tires wastes gas. In hot weather your tires, if not fully inflated can heat up and blow out. Additionally, when you have your car’s oil changed have your tires rotated and wheel alignment checked. Wheels that are not correctly aligned can cause drag on the car, reducing mileage and prematurely wear out your tires.
  3. Avoid excessive idling – standing still with the motor running reduces your miles per gallon to zero. If you are stuck in line at the fast food drive through, the bank it might be better to park and go inside. While a drawbridge is open or if you stopped for a wreck, shut off your car. It is a myth that restarting your car uses more gas than letting it idle.
  4. Reduce Trips – Many of us are used to jumping into the car and running to the store for a quart of milk, and then later in the day going again for a loaf of bread. This is a costly habit on our parts. Consolidating trips, and making lists is much smarter. Hit the cleaners, the bank and the grocery store (with a list) and make only one trip instead of several. This will save you gas and wear and tear on your car.
  5.  Use the correct grade of fuel – You love your car. So, every so often you like to treat it to a premium grade of fuel, though the car normally runs on regular. Your car has no idea of your devotion to it, it has no use for the extra and costly octane. Incidentally, Ethanol is sold in many parts of the country and some cars cannot use it, make sure your car is able to use E85 fuel before you fill up with Ethanol.
  6. Reduce Wind Resistance – Roof racks are cool, look how many crossovers and SUVs have them. However, they create wind resistance and make your car less efficient. If you can, remove roof racks and carriers when you are not using them. If you have a pick up remove the gate when possible, your mileage will improve by as much as 30 percent. With today’s gas at nearly $4.00 per gallon that is almost a savings of $1.20 per gallon.
  7. Change filters regularly – a clogged air filter can cause serious engine damage, even a dirty filter can cost you 10 percent in fuel mileage that is almost forty cents per gallon.
  8. Do not accelerate quickly from a stop – This poor driving technique can cost you as much as 30 percent off your gas mileage, which is almost $1.20 per gallon.
  9. Use cruise control – this is the most efficient way to operate your car on the open road. While calculating savings is difficult, simple logic says it makes sense as you are not constantly accelerating and decelerating.
  10. Take public transportation whenever you can.

These tips will help you to reduce your overall driving car and keep your car in good operating order. Start saving now, it is easy.