Here in the States, gas is priced at an all-time high, setting outrageous records, literally. I’d love to suggest an outright boycott, but that’s just not feasible for most of us, so until our entire infrastructure changes, what can we do but keep shelling out more and more money for gas? There are actually a lot of things we can do, actually, to get better gas mileage… and here are a few of them!
1. Keep Your Tires Properly Inflated
Did you know that under-inflated tires can make your car a lot less fuel-efficient? Sounds crazy, but it’s true! Keep your tires properly inflated and you’ll get better gas mileage, sometimes as much as a mile or more per gallon!
2. Keep Tuned up
A car that’s not properly kept up, and tuned up, will suffer in terms of gas mileage, which of course means you’ll pay more at the pump, more often. Keep on god terms with a mechanic you can trust, so you’ll know when it’s time for a tune up, and don’t put it off!
3. Don’t Speed!
To get the most miles per gallon, heed this tip: don’t speed! Studies have shown that driving more than 50 miles per hour reduces your miles per gallon… and it’s just not as safe, either. So slow down and save some cash at the pump (and perhaps a speeding ticket, too).
4. Avoid Stop and Go
Except for cars with regenerative braking, to get the best gas mileage, avoid stop and go traffic. That stopping and starting again at traffic lights and at stop signs (known as “city” driving) takes its toll on your MPGs, and your stress level. So if possible, avoid surface streets, and take the highway instead… and also, avoid rush hour, where stop and go is the norm.
5. Avoid Heavy Loads
Did you know that carting around heavy loads can also decrease your fuel efficiency? If possible, avoid carrying heavy objects in your car. Why you’d need a load of cinderblocks or sandbags in your trunk is beyond me, but you see my point: off-load heavy objects as soon as you can to get the best gas mileage.
6. Get a Smaller Car!
It’s a fact we’ve all come to accept: the big SUV may look cooler and drive better and make you feel safer, but it’s hell on your gas mileage. My HUMMER only got 8 miles to the gallon! If you’re driving a behemoth SUV, trade it in for something smaller… and you’ll likely get closer to 30 MPG instead.
7. Consider a Flex-fuel or Hybrid
Gas-electric hybrids and ethanol-gas flex-fuel cars aren’t just for tree-hugging hippies, you know, and they’re not under-powered or weird either. I’ve test-driven several of them for a number of weeks, and I can tell you with all honesty that they’re amazingly well put together, stylish, peppy, eco-friendly, quiet… and best of all, great on gas!
Remember, these high fuel prices are only going to get higher, so we need to keep as fuel-efficient as possible… at least until we can all afford electric cars! Which of these tips do you follow to get better gas mileage? Or do you have another tip to share?
Top Photo Credit: GirlsKartToo