With the cost of filling up your tank with gas rising once again, and no certainty of lower prices on the horizon, getting the best gas mileage from your vehicle has become more important than ever. There are two areas where you can improve your gas mileage: on the road, and off the road, through good maintenance of your vehicle. Here are some basic, common sense things that you can do to get better gas mileage, help protect the environment, and save money.
On the Road
- Drive evenly and obey the speed limit. Aggressive driving with lots of sudden, quick acceleration burns more gas than steady, even driving. Maintaining at a more even speed and accelerating at a moderate pace saves you gas, and money. Use your cruise control on the highway whenever possible. Additionally, faster driving tends to burn more gas than slower driving, particularly at speeds over 60 mph. Obeying the speed limit will save you money, and not just because you don’t have to pay for a speeding ticket!
- Avoid idling whenever possible. Idling is the least fuel-efficient thing that you can do in your car, because you’re literally getting zero miles to the gallon. The average cars uses the same amount of gas idling for two minutes as it would driving a mile! Turn off your engine if you are going to be stopped for longer than a few seconds.
- Plan your trip carefully and thoughtfully. They less you drive, and the fewer times you need to start your car, the less gas you burn, and the less miles you put on your vehicle. If you have several errands to run in one day, do them all in one trip, taking a route that will require you to drive the least amount of miles. Avoid traffic, or other routes that will cause stop-and-go driving, which wastes more gas, when possible.
Off the Road
- Get regular tune-ups for your vehicle. This is one of the most important things you can do to help your gas mileage. Tune-up service is available at most Colorado auto repair centers, and can improve your gas mileage by 10% or more. Your car should be tuned at regular intervals. Check your owner’s manual to find out how often your car should get a tune-up.
- Check your tire pressure. Under-inflated tires force your car to work harder, which means that it uses more gas. Checking your tires regularly can save you a lot of money.
- Change your motor oil regularly, and pay attention to the kind of motor oil recommended for you vehicle in your owner’s manual. Using the right kind of oil can increase your gas mileage.