With gas prices exceeding $3.65 per
gallon on average, filling up could cost upwards of $50, $60, $70 or
more. Goodwrench offers consumers helpful tips to improve vehicle fuel
economy and help drivers get every possible mile out each drop of
gasoline. One of the simplest ways of doing this is with proper vehicle
maintenance and sensible driving techniques.
engines have reduced requirements for regular tune-ups, but it's still
terribly important to use a clean air filter, clean oil filter and
follow your manufacturer's recommended oil change intervals to keep
your vehicle running in optimal condition," said Peter Lord, executive
director, GM Service Operations. "In fact, following your
manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule will help improve the
vehicle's performance throughout its life."
According to a recent CBS News/New York Times
consumer poll, American's think escalating fuel prices are the biggest
economic problem currently facing the country followed by the housing
and home mortgage crises and jobs. This further reinforces consumer's
desire to improve fuel economy wherever possible.
Lord says Goodwrench offers easy tips to help consumers save gas at www.goodwrench.com. He also points to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Web site, www.fueleconomy.gov, for four detailed examples that could improve a vehicle's fuel economy. They are:
Observe the Speed Limit:
While each vehicle reaches its optimal fuel economy at a different
speed (or range of speeds), gas mileage usually decreases rapidly at
speeds above 60 mph. As a rule of thumb, assume that every 5 mph you
drive over 60 mph is like paying an additional $0.20 per gallon for gas.
Fuel Economy Benefit: 7-23 percent
Equivalent Gasoline Savings: $0.25 - $0.81 per gallon
Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration and braking) wastes
gas. It can lower gas mileage by 33 percent at highway speeds and by 5
percent around town.
Fuel Economy Benefit: 5-33 percent
Equivalent Gasoline Savings: $0.18 - $1.16 per gallon
Check and Replace Air Filters:
Replacing a plugged filter improves fuel economy by up to 10 percent,
according to the EPA. A vehicle's air filter keeps impurities from
damaging the inside of the engine. Not only will replacing a dirty air
filter save gas, it will help protect the engine.
Fuel Economy Benefit: up to 10 percent
Equivalent Gasoline Savings: up to $0.35 per gallon
Keep tires properly inflated:
Improve gas mileage by around 3.3 percent by keeping tires inflated to
the proper pressure. Under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by 0.4
percent for every 1 psi drop in pressure of all four tires.
Fuel Economy Benefit: up to 3 percent
Equivalent Gasoline Savings: up to $0.11 per gallon
pressure is critical," said Robert Sinclair, spokesperson for AAA of
New York. "If you've ever ridden a bicycle with low air pressure, you
know that extra rolling resistance makes you work much harder. It's the
same thing with your engine."
10 Ways you can Save Gas from Goodwrench:
1. Go the speed limit. Use cruise control. You can get up to 20 percent more mileage traveling 55 mph than 70 mph.
Drive evenly. Avoid hard stops. Quick starts burn gas while hard stops
also cost you. Take your foot off the accelerator and coast a bit
before stopping for a traffic light or a stop sign.
3. Avoid idling and rush hour traffic. You're burning fuel while idling - up to a gallon every hour.
Open windows at slow speeds. Use A/C on highways. Around town, turn
your air conditioning off and roll down the windows. On the highway,
open windows create drag at speeds of 40 mph or more, so roll them up
and use the air.
5. Remove junk from the trunk. Added weight in your vehicle affects fuel economy, so take unnecessary items out of your trunk.
Fill up when it's cool and before holidays. Cooler temperatures in the
early morning or late evening create less vapor. Also, getting a
fill-up three days before a holiday will help you save on the
per-gallon price at the pump.
Don't top off gas and tighten the cap. When buying gas, stop when the
pump shuts off automatically. And remember, your tank needs both fuel
and fumes, so tighten the gas cap after every fill-up.
8. Use the correct fuel grade. Use the fuel grade recommended by your vehicle manufacturer.
Don't accelerate up hill. Build up speed before an incline, and then
maintain it on the way up. Coast on the way down for additional fuel
rooftop carriers. Approximately one quarter of each gallon of gas is
needed to overcome wind resistance, so avoid carrying things on your
roof. If necessary, use an aerodynamic carrier to help minimize drag.