With gas prices on the rise we all can use as many tips about improving gas mileage as we can get. Here are some tips from the US Department of Energy.
Idling gets you 0 miles per gallon. The best way to warm up a vehicle is to drive it. No more than 30 seconds of idling on winter days is needed. Anything more simply wastes fuel and increases emissions.
Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration, and hard braking) wastes gas. It can lower your highway gas mileage 33% and city mileage 5%.
Avoid high speeds. Above 60 mph, gas mileage drops rapidly. The fuel economy web site shows how driving speed affects gas mileage. As a rule of thumb, you can assume that each 5 mph you drive over 60 mph is like paying an additional $0.20 per gallon for gas.
When you use overdrive gearing, your car’s engine speed goes down. This saves gas and reduces wear.
Reduce drag by placing items inside the car or trunk rather than on roof racks. A roof rack or carrier provides additional cargo space and may allow you to buy a smaller car. However, a loaded roof rack can decrease your fuel economy by 5%.
Car Maintenance Tips
Keep tires properly inflated and aligned to improve your gasoline mileage by around 3.3%.
Get regular engine tune-ups and car maintenance checks to avoid fuel economy problems due to worn spark plugs, dragging brakes, low transmission fluid, or transmission problems.
Replace clogged air filters to improve gas mileage by as much as 10% and protect your engine.
Combine errands into one trip. Several short trips, each one taken from a cold start, can use twice as much fuel as one trip covering the same distance when the engine is warm.