Top 5 Ways to Save Gas While Driving

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Fuel prices are probably not going significantly lower anytime soon. Unless you want to fork over the cash for a tiny hybrid or electric car, make your current car more fuel-efficient by changing your driving habits. The best ways to save gas while driving are practices that are simple to implement and help you get the most mileage out of your vehicle.

5 Sometimes Use the A/C

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When the weather gets warm and you’re on the highway, save gas by turning on the air conditioner. According to a May 2011 article in “Popular Mechanics,” when you drive over 55 miles per hour and use the A/C instead of opening windows, your car is more fuel-efficient because there’s less aerodynamic drag. At lower speeds, open your windows to stay cool and save gas.

4 Plan Your Trips

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Before the weekend arrives or as you plan a big event, think about the items that you need to buy. This way you can take care of all your tasks in one trip instead of making several. However, before you run around town, think about where you need to go. Plan your trip so you make it to your destinations in a logical order and avoid driving across town multiple times.

3 Lose the Junk in Your Trunk

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The heavier your car is, the more gas it uses to get from point A to point B. The U.S. Department of Energy says that every 100 pounds in your car reduces its fuel economy by up to 2 percent. Roof racks are worse because they decrease your car’s aerodynamics, making it up to 5 percent less fuel-efficient.

2 Get Regular Maintenance

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Keep your car in shape and it’ll pay off at the pump. Get your car tuned regularly for a savings of about 14 cents per gallon. The U.S. Department of Energy says that keeping your tires inflated to the right level can save you as much as 11 cents per gallon, a 3 percent savings. When you change your car’s oil, use the grade that the manufacturer recommends so your engine doesn’t have to work harder to process it.

1 Practice Efficiency

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Ditch the road rage and high speeds when you’re behind the wheel. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, aggressive driving—where you step on the gas, then stomp on the brake—can decrease your fuel economy by up to 33 percent. Driving the speed limit can improve your fuel economy by as much as 14 percent. When you’re picking up someone, turn off the engine as you wait for them to arrive. Idling costs you about 3 cents per minute.

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