You’ve probably been driving for many years and when you learned how to drive the price of gas was no doubt considerably cheaper than it is now. You might remember as a teen driver, it was cool to drive fast, peel out, stop suddenly and just drive for entertainment. But with the increase of gas prices, here are some money saving gas tips.
Those habits were excused because you were young and the cost of gas was nothing compared to costs today. Almost everyone drove impatiently and in a hurry to get wherever it was they were going if they were going anywhere at all. You didn’t mind being called the one with the lead foot.
We’re being forced to learn how to drive all over again because of the high cost of gas and to make an effort to save at the pump. I don’t know the price of gas where you are but here in North Carolina, the price is almost $3.00 a gallon because of Hurricane Harvey and we are bracing for Hurricane Irma as I write this. Buying gas is something we must do all too often, sometimes weekly to get us to work and other necessary destinations. It’s not a bill that just comes around monthly such as utilities. It has become a constant strain on our cash flow.
- Perhaps the best lesson to be learned is to drive calmly, slow down and be patient. Drive as though there is a cup of hot coffee on your dashboard and you’re doing your best not to spill it. This will not only save gas but be safer as well.
- The faster you drive the more fuel you’re using. 55 mph is the optimum speed on the highway. Authorities are again considering making 55 mph required on all highways in an effort to mandate fuel conservation. If they do that, you’ll be well ahead of the game. On some highways in west Texas, you can drive legally 80 mph. Gas mileage drops dramatically at this speed.
- Don’t drive erratically. Strive for smooth starts and stops. Pick a lane and stay in it without weaving in and out of traffic. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. If you can cut the number of miles driven by only 5% it can save you up to $100 or more a year. Doesn’t sound like much, but it can mean a free tank of gas or two. And I can tell you after driving to and from Greensboro yesterday, there were so many drivers not practicing this. There were a few times I thought an accident might occur.
- Travel lightly. Do away with the roof top luggage rack and save another 5% by reducing the air drag and weight. Make sure your trunk is empty too or the extra weight will add 2% to your gas bill for each 100 pounds. Small things add up quickly. Make sure they add up to your benefit.
- No idling. Perhaps when you were young and learning to drive your mom or dad instructed you to let the car engine idle and warm up for a few minutes before driving. This is not needed now. Late model cars are designed to be driven almost immediately with warm up time cut to only a few seconds.
- Gas up in the coolest part of the day. When gas is hot the volume increases and could leak out or spill over the top. Use the lowest octane your vehicle can tolerate without pinging. Stay cool and get your money’s worth. We normally gas up either in the early morning or early to late evening. And here is a plus, lines are a lot shorter than.
So tell me what ways have you found to save on gas? Share your gas tips.