Get ready to pay more at the pump! Gas prices in Florida are expected to rise as spring approaches, peaking at around $3.75 a gallon this year, according to AAA. Not everyone is in a position to buy a more fuel efficient car, but there are a few things you can do to improve the fuel efficiency in your current vehicle.
- Keeping your tires properly inflated is one of the easiest, and most rewarding, ways to improve your fuel efficiency. Check your tire pressure at least once a month, or in cases of significant temperature fluctuation. Under-inflated tires burn more fuel. Under-inflated tires can lower the gas mileage on your vehicle, even tires under-inflated by just 1 or 2 psi.
- Lighten the load! Weight can make a difference in fuel economy, so remove any unnecessary heavy items from your vehicle. If you’re storing sporting equipment or a trunk full of items you don’t need to haul around, clean out your car and reap the rewards of better gas mileage… and less clutter in general. For more tips on how to get your car organized, check out our blog post, “Everything in its Place – How to Organize Your Car for A Safe Trip.”
- Regular maintenance is key. Regular checkups and tasks such replacing dirty air filters as outlined in your owner’s manual, or more if you drive in dusty conditions, are important for better fuel efficiency.
- When filling up at the pump, make sure your gas cap is screwed in tight. Loose or missing caps can allow gas to vaporize.
- Ease up on the gas, and watch your speed. Quick starts and acceleration can increase your fuel consumption. A smooth, light acceleration from a stop will use less fuel (and is safer in general!) than a rapid acceleration. Further, speed plays a big part in how much you can expect to pay at the pump – in addition to the added cost of any speeding tickets! According to the U.S. Department of Energy, gas mileage usually decreases rapidly at speeds above 50 mph. For each 5 mph you drive over 50 mph, it is like paying an additional $0.24 per gallon for gas.
You can save cash with some simple changes to your driving habits. What other tips would you give to drivers on how to save at the gas pump?
- AAA: Gas prices will rise ahead of spring – Orlando Sentinel
- Driving More Efficiently – US Department of Energy