Fuel Saving Tips to beat the Gas Crunch Part 1 of 4

More than likely we don’t have to tell you how ridiculous gas prices have become lately. Unless you don’t drive a car you’re more than likely acutely aware of the fact that filling up your gas tank can put a serious hurt on your wallet. Now, to be perfectly frank, we’ve written plenty of blog articles about how to save money on gas. From carpooling to riding a bicycle and everything in between we probably covered it already.

That being said, we also realize that many of our readers are new and many of you are searching for tips, advice and facts that will help you to lower your gasoline costs right now. Some of the tips and advice will be sharing with you during this 3-part series you might have heard about already and some of them are new (even to us). Thus we present Part 1 in our 4-part series of fuel saving tips to beat the gas crunch. Enjoy.

Lighten the load. Simply put, the more junk you carry around with you in your car more gasoline your car is going to use. Some people carry so much stuff in their car that they don’t even have room for other passengers! Lighten the load and you will lighten the stress that filling up puts on your wallet.

Air on the side of caution. Tires that are either under or over-inflated can negatively affect your gas mileage. On the inside driver doorframe of most cars you’ll find a sticker with lots of information, including the correct PSI for the tires that came stock with your car. Use this number rather than the number that’s written on the side of the tires as your recommended psi and make sure to check your tire pressure at least once a week, especially in summer, to make sure that they are properly inflated.

The shoe for you.  Unless you need to wear thick, heavy boots because it’s winter or because of your work, try to wear thin shoes as it will give you a much better feel for your gas pedal and you’ll use less gasoline. This is especially pronounced if you do a lot of stop and go driving around town.

Avoid the rush. Unless you have to be at your work, or anywhere else for that matter, at a time that coincides with rush hour, avoid going anywhere at this time as it means that you will more than likely encounter much more traffic and be forced to accelerate and decelerate much more frequently and thus use much more gasoline. We have heard of many people that have changed their work hours so that they could arrive earlier and leave earlier and vice versa so that they could not only avoid rush-hour but save on gas costs.

Don’t drive distracted. Do you eat, talk on the phone or even play games on your smartphone when you drive? If you do you’re not only a danger to yourself and your fellow drivers but you’re also wasting gas. Don’t do that, please.

Up to speed. There are two trains of thought on how quickly you should accelerate from a stop. The first says that you should accelerate slowly and build up speed slowly so that your engine uses less gas. The second says that, while you shouldn’t take off like an Indy 500 driver from a stop, you should accelerate at a reasonable speed to get your car into a higher gear more quickly (where your engine will use less gas). More than likely the best way to accelerate from a stop is somewhere in between the two, based on the type of car that you have and the area of the country where you live.

Coast to coast. There are many people that overly use their breaks. (We know, we’ve followed you.) What you do when you frequently use your breaks is cut down on your cars inertial energy, energy that you’ve already used gas to build up. Better to use this gas-fed inertia to coast to a stop, coast down hills and coast more when you are in stop and go traffic. This will not only save you gas but will save you maintenance costs to replace brake shoes and pads.

Egg on your shoe. This may seem a bit silly but we tried it and it works. What you need to do is pretend that there is a raw egg between your foot and your cars accelerator pedal. By doing this you will use less force when accelerating and thus less gas. (We don’t recommend this with a real egg because, frankly, it can be quite messy.)

Use your cruise (control). If your car has cruise control and you are not in stop and go traffic you should definitely be using it as much as possible. Simply put, even small amounts of acceleration and deceleration while you’re driving, which most people do when they’re not using cruise control, can negatively affect your gas mileage. On the highway especially you should use cruise control and set it at 65 mph. This will save you money and also save you from getting a speeding ticket.

That’s it for Part 1. We hope that some of these tips have been useful and we invite you to come back very soon for part two. Until then, drive safe, drive smart and have a great day. See you back here soon.

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