Better Driving Habits for Better Gas Mileage

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated March 29, 2012)

1

in trouble. Have you ever noticed how the price of gas seems to go through a vicious cycle where it will go up really high, then drop down a bit (but never quite as low as it used to be), before going back up again? While there isn't a whole lot that we can do that would affect the overall cost of gas (except for not buying it that is) there are a few things that you can do that will help you reduce the number of times you have to refill your tank. The best way is by learning some better driving habits for better gas mileage. You would be amazed at just how quickly these savings will add up.

  • Check your tires regularly. Having your tires at the proper psi can do wonders for increasing your gas mileage. According to some, this simple action can help improve your fuel efficiency by as much as 5%. While it may not seem like much, it is more than what many credit card companies offer for cash back incentives.
  • Don't speed. Unnecessarily speeding, or going for the quick start as if you were in a race, can suck up quite a bit of gas. In fact, if you are able to reduce the overall number of times that you accelerate and decelerate you can help reduce the amount of gas that you use. A simple example of how you can do this is to simply remove your foot from the gas pedal when you see a red light ahead of you, only push on the brake when you need to. Often times, if you are far enough away from the light it will turn green again before you reach it. By properly anticipating such stops and starts, and limiting your speeding on the highway, you can increase your gas savings by as much as 47%.
  • Limit your air conditioner. If you are simply driving around town, and not going to be going very fast then limit the use of your air conditioner. In fact, simply roll down your window and allow the car to be "naturally" cooled by you driving around. Save your air conditioner for when you are going to be going on long trips, and traveling above 50 miles per hour.
  • Avoid idling as much as possible. Another simple method for getting better gas mileage is to reduce the amount of idling that you do. Simply put, when you idle you are using the gas in your tank. Since you are not driving anywhere you are not getting very much use out of it. If you will be sitting at a single location for longer than a couple of minutes. Considering that the average red light doesn't last for more than five minutes, this should be a good round number to use. If you have local ordinances that say otherwise, make sure that you are following those instructions to avoid getting

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

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What is 8 - 1?

2015-10-29 23:25:20

JHorwitz

You can improve gas mileage by driving so as to maximize average engine vacuum. Since few vehicles have vacuum gauges installed, the way you do this is to use less throttle when driving slow, more when driving fast (seems obvious, doesn't it?).

However, on hills, you achieve this by slowly reducing throttle uphill, losing speed when you do so. You continue to reduce throttle as you lose speed (but not so much you can't have some reasonable speed over the crest of the hill. You reverse this by slowly increasing throttle (and gaining speed) down hill (but watch the speed so it's never "too" fast).

The problem is that, in the extreme, you would be going very slow across the crest of hills and very fast in the valleys at the bottoms. So, the big trick is to learn how to look ahead and apply a reasonable amount of this approach when the roads, traffic, etc., make it feasible.

As a practical example, on a lightly traveled limited access highway, you might want to give up 10-15 mph going up a hill and gaining it back coming down. Just do what's safe and not likely to get you a violation!


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