Owning a car comes with numerous expenses – car insurance, maintenance, gas, etc. Prices at the pump fluctuate by the week, so you never really know what to expect. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to improve your vehicle's fuel efficiency and reduce the number of stops you need to make at the gas station.
You are not a race car driver, so there is no need to break the speed limit, no matter where you are going. According to the Chicago Tribune, gas mileage begins to decrease rapidly as soon as you breach 50 mph. So, if you are on a highway with a speed limit of 65 mph, you are only hurting your fuel efficiency by speeding. And, will you really get somewhere that much faster by going 75 or 80 mph?
Maintain your vehicle:
Neglecting your vehicle is a great way to hurt your gas mileage, so you may want to consider taking your car in for regular check ups. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, fixing a car that is out of tune or has failed an emission test can improve its gas mileage by 4 percent. And, if it has a serious problem – such as a faulty oxygen sensor – fuel efficiency can improve by as much as 40 percent.
Properly inflate your tires:
Believe it or not, a slight drop or increase in tire pressure can potentially impact your car's fuel efficiency. To get the most from a tank of gas, the Chicago Tribune said you'll want to check to see if your tire pressure is at the recommended level – this information can generally be found in the owner's manual. According to the Tribune, keeping your tires at the recommended psi can boost fuel efficiency by 3.3 percent.
Buy a more efficient vehicle:
If you drive a gas guzzling SUV or pickup truck, you may want to consider searching for a car that is more energy efficient. The Department of Energy said a car that gets 10 more miles per gallon can save you around $818 per year. This could also allow you to save on insurance, so if you do choose to purchase a new car be sure to search for cheap car insurance quotes.