It’s no secret that we all dislike the cost of filling up our gas tanks. And with many parts of the state doing a lot of commuting, some have to fill up more often than they’d like. If you’re looking for ways to save money, the gas pump is a place where you can decrease costs. I’ve put together a list of ways that you can save:
Always filling up at the gas station closest to your home is convenient, but going elsewhere could potentially save you some money. Make a mental note of station prices on your commute and start filling up at whichever one has the lowest cost – even if your tank isn’t on empty yet. You can also take advantage of GasBuddy, which is a specialized gas savings app that does most of the work for you. Saving you both time and money, the app will direct you to gas stations with the lowest prices after pinpointing your location. GasBuddy is free and compatible with both iOS and Android!
On top of saving money by avoiding potential tickets, driving under the speed limit will help you save on gas. According to Fuel Economy, rapid acceleration, high cruising speed and braking abruptly instead of coasting are the biggest contributing factors to low gas mileage. Those who adopt a calm driving style can expect to save up to 40% on gas. Each vehicle reaches its optimal fuel economy at different speeds. However, every vehicle’s gas mileage decreases rapidly when traveling above 50 mph. For every 5 mph you drive over 50 mph, you can expect your costs to increase by an equivalent of 19¢ per gallon.
Eliminate Wind Resistance
Hauling cargo on the roof of your vehicle is often necessary, and even more so if you’re driving a car with limited storage space. Whether it’s a kayak, bike or simply a storage container, it can interfere with the aerodynamics of your vehicle. According to GasBuddy, hauling cargo on your roof can reduce your fuel efficiency by up to 25% on the interstate. So if you’re planning on taking a road trip this spring, it’s actually more cost-efficient to tow a small trailer. And while air conditioning does lower your gas mileage, an open window increases drag and costs you even more fuel efficiency. So if you can, opt for air conditioning if you’re traveling at speeds over 45 mph.
Keep up on Maintenance
Properly inflated tires reduce friction and offer better gas mileage. Make sure you’re keeping an eye on your tire pressure and that you swap out your winter tires soon. Waiting too long to change them this spring will reduce your fuel efficiency, as snow tires cause excess friction on dry surfaces, wasting gas. Tuning the engine, changing filters and using the correct motor oil all contribute to better gas mileage as well, so it might be time for a spring tune-up!
If your destination is a relatively short trip, consider riding a bike or walking there. Not only will you be saving gas money, but you’ll be improving your heath as well. Personally, I’ll be riding my bike a lot more as the weather improves. It was a long, cold winter and I’m looking forward to getting out in the sun more!
How often do you have to fill up? I’d love to know!