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You don’t need a hybrid or electric vehicle to save on MPGs. With ever increasing gas prices we want to get as many miles as we can from our gas tanks, and there are plenty of ways to do it in your current ride. If you want to be more conservative with your gas, here are the five best ways to do so.
5 Check your tires
Under-inflated tires are a huge culprit in maintaining max MPGs. When tires aren’t filled to their proper PSIs, they have more rolling resistance which requires more gas burning to get them in motion. Inflated tires are also important for your own safety and proper tire wear. I recommend keeping a tire pressure gage in your glove compartment and checking the air every so often. Since you should wait until after the tires have had a chance to cool down to check them (hot tires can affect yourpsi reading), I usually park my car at work and before I head off, I’ll give the tires a check every so often. You can see how much proper inflation you need either by either looking in the car’s owner manual or a label inside of the door jamb.
4 Become Less Aggressive
When we say aggressive, we aren’t saying you are the type of driver that runs cars off the road. What we mean is, you like to hit the gas at the red lights, zoom past others in the passing lanes, and generally slow down and speed up erratically, or just like to push your car hard. Chilling out and just becoming a smoother, calmer, driver who doesn’t speed up as fast as they can, only to slow down thirty feet later, can save you a lot on gas down the line.
3 Weight of Cargo
We aren’t telling you to boot your kids out of the car and have them walk (or maybe we are) but one of the best ways to be sure to save on gas mileage is dropping the extra weight inside of your car. If you are the type of person who carries a lot of excess stuff in both the trunk and back seat which you never use (sporting equipment, old luggage, car parts, boxes full of stuff you keep forgetting to drop off at the thrift store) – lose it. Every 100 lbs you add to your car will reduce your MPGs, and it’s surprising how fast random junk can add up to 100 lbs. If you are like me and tend to keep a jack and jack stands in your trunk in case they are needed at the track (or just for emergencies), think about picking up aluminumversions since you probably won’t be doing any heavy duty work outside your garage anyways. These light ones will shave a few pounds off your cargo load.
2 Use Cruise Control
Constant accelerating and decelerating are not the best way to keep gas in your tank. Maintaining a constant speed will usually help you increase MPGs. Again, if you have the patience and live in a state where average highway speeds are 55, try using your speed control to go exactly the posted speed and calculate how much gas yousave. I think you’ll be surprised.
1 Think about going over 50 mph
Once you go over 50 miles per hour your MPGs start falling. I know it’s hard for most of us, but even cutting down on driving ‘five or ten over the speed limit’ on the freeway is going to save you some gas. The fueleconomy.gov site claims that every five miles per hour you go over 50 mph, you are paying an additional 0.24 cents per gallon. Remember to be safe when driving slower in conditions where others are driving fast. Pull over if you have to and don’t let the speed demons and aggressive drivers get to you!
So there you have it. Start saving money on gas right away and raising your MPGs. You’ll be surprised how much gas you can save with just these five tips.