How to Maximize Your Gas Mileage

How to Maximize Your Gas Mileage

Posted on Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Pumping gas can feel like dumping cash straight in the tank.

Gas may be relatively cheap right now, but we always want to stretch out every tank of gas, for both environmental and financial reasons. So how you can get the most out of the pump? Here’s what you need to know about maximizing gas mileage.

Drive Smartly

Speeding, braking suddenly or speeding up quickly, and other bad behaviors aren’t just annoying on the highway. They’re burning up far more of our gas than we realize, 5% more when we’re driving around town, and up to a third more on the highway. Of course, we don’t always know when we’re driving poorly, and sometimes we have to drive aggressively to be safe. Investing in a driver feedback device might help you figure out when you’re being a little too heavy on the pedal.

Clean Up

The heavier a vehicle is, the more energy you need to get it going. And, thus, the more gas your car burns. Hauling cargo is a common job for any car, of course, but we’re all guilty of leaving stuff in the trunk or not getting the trash out of the back. It might only make a small difference, but keeping the junk away from your car’s trunk will pay back benefits at the pump.

Keep your tank more full by being efficient with gas.

Check Your Tires

Tire pressure is tied to almost every system in your car, and improperly inflated tires drag down your gas mileage. It seems odd, but it’s all due to physics: The more of your tire on the road, the more grip your car has, and thus the more energy the tire needs to pull away from the road. So, make sure your tires are inflated to the proper pressure on a regular basis. Remember that heat can expand and cold can shrink tires and plan accordingly.

Avoid Traffic

We all hate traffic, no matter who we are or what we drive. And being stuck in traffic isn’t just bad for your temper and making appointments, it’s also bad for your wallet. Burning gas in traffic is a problem, and the best way to prevent it is to avoid it. There’s many ways to avoid traffic; you can use public transit, use a crowdsourced app that lets you avoid traffic when you’re driving, or time your drives so that traffic is flowing. You can’t dodge every traffic jam, but making an effort will help you maximize your gas mileage.

Keep Off The Roof

Another factor that can keep your gas bills higher than you might like is storing stuff on your roof. Cars are very sensitive to changes in their aerodynamics, and even the most streamlined, well-designed roof storage unit is going to add weight, height, and drag to your car. That means you’ll burn more fuel getting to where you need to go. If you need to put something on the roof, use a cargo container that’s easily removed.

In the end, saving gas is about driving smart and knowing how your car works. The less energy you need to get your car rolling, the less you’ll feel it every time you hit the pump. And if that means getting a new car,
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