Check the Air in Your Tires
Always make sure your tires have the recommended amount of pressure. Underinflated increases how much harder your car's engine has to work and increases how much gas you use. If you have a newer vehicle, it most likely has built-in alerts that warn you when you need to add air and tells you the manufacturer's recommended PSI.
Change Your Oil Regularly
Similar to your tires, when your vehicle's needs to be changed, the engine works harder and you burn through extra fuel. The fresh oil ads more lubrication to the metal parts and improves efficiency. By getting regular oil changes based on how often you drive, you can reduce how much gas you use. Also, pay attention to the type of oil the manufacturer recommends. There are different types and using the wrong one can limit your vehicle's performance. Additionally, clean oil reduces the wear on the engine, which can prevent repair costs. So, if you've been putting off an oil change until you have the money, your best option is to have it changed or do it yourself and spend less money on gas.
Get Routine Auto Check-Ups
If you have a new vehicle, chances are you won't need regular check-ups. However, if it's a few years old, routine maintenance can keep it running smoothly, and your fuel costs low. According to Exxon.com, these appointments can spot problems, such as a faulty oxygen sensor. Replacing it can improve your mileage up to 40%. During these visits to an automotive specialist, simple tasks such as replacing your air filter can improve fuel economy.
Reduce Excess Weight
Don't drive around in a vehicle with an unnecessary load. For example, if you drive a pickup truck for work, only take the equipment you need for the day. For every extra pound in your vehicle, the harder the engine has to work and the more gas you'll burn.
Check the Seal on Your Gas Cap
Gas cap seals tend to wear out after a few years and can need repair or replacement. When you fill-up your tank, always verify the seal is intact. Although you're not losing liquid gas, it will evaporate through a damaged seal. If you have a newer vehicle, you may be able to bypass this step. Any leaks will activate a check engine soon light and your dealership's mechanics will get a code that tells them what they need to repair.
Although many people don't want to hear it, if you have a "lead foot", you're going to go through more fuel than someone who drives the speed limit or under. Additionally, changing your driving habits can improve gas mileage. As you're heading towards a stop sign or red light, let your car coast. When you're braking, speeding up, and braking again, you're wasting gas. Tailgating, which requires pumping the gas in short bursts and alternating between the gas and brake, can eat fuel, costing you more money for questionable driving habits.
Turn Off the AC
Another suggestion you may not want to hear involves air conditioning. If you don't need it, leave it off. Cooling off a hot car that's operated by a steaming engine on a 90-degree day isn't easy and will cause it to work harder to keep you comfortable. When your AC is on, you will use more gas.
Stop "Warming Up" Your Vehicle
A decade or more ago it was common to "warm-up" your car's engine before driving off. Even in the winter, you should have heat in a few minutes and don't need to let it idle to prevent engine damage. This is false information that wastes gas. In fact, the fastest way to warm up your vehicle is to drive it.
Keep the Car Off Between Stops
Don't leave your vehicle idling. If you're not going to be leaving for 10 seconds or longer, turn off the engine. You may think you're saving money by not turning it on and off. However, holding your car for more than 10 seconds burns more gas than turning it on and off.
There's a lot you can do to improve your vehicle's gas mileage. If you're still not seeing an improvement, it may be time for a new vehicle that can save you money in the long-run between fuel economy and repairs. To learn more about how a new car or truck can help you save on transportation expenses, contact Gerry Lane Cadillac today.