With the news of gas prices rising in the United States to an average of $3.67 per gallon, according to the Associated Press, drivers are looking for any way to make that tank of gas go further. While you can’t necessarily control the price of gasoline, here are five ways to help you squeeze every penny’s worth out of your next fill-up.
While it may get you to your destination a little later, slowing down can really make the savings add up. According the U.S. Department of Energy, for every 5 mph over 50 mph, it's like paying another 25 cents a gallon for fuel. It may not necessarily be practical to drive at 50 mph on the highway, especially in a 65mph zone, butslowing down in general will help your overall fuel economy.
Don't Just Sit There
Sometimes it’s unavoidable, but keep in mind that idling gets you 0 mpg, burns gas and burns even more if you’re running the air conditioner as well. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates idling costs drivers between $0.02-0.04 a minute.
If you don’t need all those things in your trunk, lighten the load. Having excess weight in your vehicle can reduce your fuel efficiency by 2 percent. While this doesn’t affect larger vehicles as much, smaller vehicles may feel the impact more.
This is probably one of the most important things to check and fix. It doesn’t matter how many safety features your car has or how expensive it is if you’re not taking care of the four tires that connect with the road surface. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that for every 1 psi of underinflation, gas mileage drops by 0.3 percent.
Windows Down vs. Air Conditioner
When you're traveling at lower speeds, consider keeping the windows rolled down to cool the car. However, when traveling on the highway, it may be more efficient to keep the windows rolled up and the air conditioner running because drag, or air resistance, affects a vehicle more with the windows rolled down at higher speeds, according to a study conducted by the Society of Automotive Engineers in 2004.
Know more tips to maximize gas mileage? Let us know in the comments.