Here are a few tips to help you save money on gasoline.
- Drive Safely. Avoid braking hard or accelerating unnecessarily quickly. Erratic driving reduces your vehicles fuel economy.
- Slow Down. For every 5 miles per hour over 60 miles per hour, your vehicle loses up to 23 percent of its fuel economy.
- Maintain your Vehicle. Make sure your tires have the recommended pressure. Under inflated tires lower your vehicle's fuel economy and wear out more quickly. Tires that are out of alignment also diminish fuel economy and wear out faster than normal. A clogged air filter can cut fuel economy by 10 percent, a faulty oxygen sensor can cut fuel economy by 40 percent. Change your spark plugs before they are due. Worn spark plugs can misfire and incomplete combustion can reduce fuel economy. Worn oxygen sensors inadequately measure the air/fuel mixture in an engine and can cost you up to 15 percent in gas mileage.
- Plan Ahead. Plot your route on AAA's Internet TripTik planner to find the cheapest gas along your route. You can also download TripTik apps to your smartphone or iPad with gas price information - available for iphones and Android devices. Combine errands around town to cut down on daily driving.
- Travel Lightly. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk can reduce fuel economy by one percent. Remove items such as golf clubs when driving around town.
- Turn it off. Don't use the air conditioning if you can avoid it. Idling for a minute or more uses more gasoline than shutting off and restarting the engine.
Drive Green, Save Green
The North Carolina DOT is encouraging all drivers to create a lean, green, money-saving machine. Visit their site, “Drive Green, Save Green”, for more information on how proper car maintenance, speed and tire pressure can positively affect your fuel savings.