With gasoline prices spiraling upward-especially in California, which lays claim to the nation’s highest-priced gas-it’s time to review the most effective ways to cut down on gasoline guzzling.
Of course, you will save gas by planning and combining car trips or by choosing a more fuel-efficient automobile. Beyond that, from a panel of fuel economy advisors, here are the top 10 ways to get the most out of every gallon:
Check that lead foot You may be in a hurry, but aggressive driving can lower your mileage by 33% on the highway and 5% around town.
Observe speed limits Mileage decreases rapidly when you are driving over 60 mph. Every five mph you drive over that is like raising your gas price by 24 cents a gallon.
Keep it light Every 100 pounds you carry in your vehicle can reduce you mph by 2%.
Avoid excessive idling Idling gets 0 miles per gallon. The larger the engine, the more wasted gas.
Use cruise control Maintaining a constant speed on the highway saves gas.
Use overdrive gears They slow your engine down, reducing gas consumption.
Keep the engine tuned A car that is out of tune or has failed an emissions test can improve gas mileage by 4% when tuned.
Keep tires properly inflated Under-inflated tires lower gas mileage. You can improve your mileage by 3.3% by keeping them properly inflated.
Use recommended grade of motor oil You can improve mileage up to 2% by using the manufacturer’s recommended grade.
Replace clogged air filters In older cars with carbureted engines, a clogged air filter can improve fuel economy by 2-6% or more. (This does not apply to newer cars with fuel-injected, computer controlled gasoline engines).