If You want to save money, check out the Gas !
The surest way you can improve your fuel cost problem is to change your motoring habits. Listed below under four categories are 30 effective methods of doing so… no need to buy expensive add-on equipment.
WARM-UP THE ENGINE, BUT NOT TOO LONG
1. Avoid prolonged warming up of engine, even on cold mornings – 30 to 45 seconds is plenty of time.
2. Be sure the automatic choke is disengaged after engine warm up… chokes often get stuck, resulting in bad gas/air mixture.
3. Don’t start and stop engine needlessly. Idling your engine for one minute consumes the gas amount equivalent to when you start the engine.
4. Avoid “reving” the engine, especially just before you switch the engine off; this wastes fuel needlessly and washes oil down from the inside cylinder walls, owing to loss of oil pressure.
5. Eliminate jack-rabbit starts. Accelerate slowly when starting from dead stop. Don’t push pedal down more than 1/4 of the total foot travel. This allows carburetor to function at peak efficiency.
6. Buy gasoline during coolest time of day – early morning or late evening is best. During these times gasoline is densest. Keep in mind – gas pumps measure volumes of gasoline, not densities of fuel concentration. You are charged according to “volume of measurement”.
7. Choose type and brand of gasoline carefully. Certain brands provide you with greater economy because of better quality. Use the brands which “seem” most beneficial.
8. Avoid filling gas tank to top. Overfilling results in sloshing over and out of tank. Never fill gas tank past the first “click” of fuel nozzle, if nozzle is automatic.
9. Exceeding 40 mph forces your auto to overcome tremendous wind resistance.
10. Never exceed legal speed limit. Primarily they are set for your traveling safety, however better gas efficiency also occurs. Traveling at 55 mph give you up to 21% better mileage when compared to former legal speed limits of 65 mph and 70 mph.
11. Traveling at fast rates in low gears can consume up to 45% more fuel than is needed.
12. Manual shift driven cars allow you to change to highest gear as soon as possible, thereby letting you save gas if you “nurse it along”. However, if you cause the engine to “bog down”, premature wearing of engine parts occurs.
13. Keep windows closed when traveling at highway speeds. Open windows cause air drag, reducing your mileage by 10%.
14. Drive steadily. Slowing down or speeding up wastes fuel. Also avoid tailgating – the driver in front of you is unpredictable. Not only is it unsafe, but if affects your economy, if he slows down unexpectedly.
15.Think ahead when approaching hills. If you accelerate, do it before you reach the hill, not while you’re on it.
16. Do not rest left foot on floor board pedals while driving. The slightest pressure puts “mechanical drag” on components, wearing them down prematurely. This “dragging” also demands additional fuel usage.
17. Avoid rough roads whenever possible, because dirt or gravel rob you of up to 30% of your gas mileage.
18. Use alternate roads when safer, shorter, straighter. Compare traveling distance differences – remember that corners, curves and lane jumping requires extra gas. The shortest distance between two points is always straight.
19. Stoplights are usually timed for your motoring advantage. By traveling steadily at the legal speed limit you boost your chances of having the “green light” all the way.
20. Automatic transmissions should be allowed to cool down when your car is idling at a standstill, e.g. railroad crossings, long traffic lights, etc. Place gear into neutral position. This reduces transmission strain and allows transmission to cool.
21. Park car so that you can later begin to travel in forward gear; avoid reverse gear maneuvers to save gas.
22. Regular tune-ups ensure best economy; check owner’s manual for recommended maintenance intervals. Special attention should be given to maintaining clean air filters… diminished air flow increases gas waste.
23. Inspect suspension and chassis parts for occasional misalignment. Bent wheels, axles, bad shocks, broken springs, etc. create engine drag and are unsafe at high traveling speeds.
25. Inflate all tires to maximum limit. Each tire should be periodically spun, balanced and checked for out-of-round. When shopping for new tires, get large diameter tires for rear wheels. Radial designs are the recognized fuel–savers; check manufacturer’s specifications for maximum tire pressures.
26. Remove vinyl tops – they cause air drag. Rough surfaces disturb otherwise smooth air flow around a car‘s body. Bear in mind when buying new cars that a fancy sun roof helps disturb smooth air flow (and mileage).
27. Auto air conditioners can reduce fuel economy by 10% to 20%. Heater fan, power windows and seats increase engine load; the more load on your engine, the less miles per gallon.
28. Remove excess weight from trunk or inside of car – extra tires, back seats, unnecessary heavy parts. Extra weight reduces mileage, especially when driving up inclines.
29. Car pools reduce travel monotony and gas expense – all riders chip in to help you buy. Conversation helps to keep the driver alert. Pooling also reduces traffic congestion, gives the driver easier maneuverability and greater “steady speed” economy. For best results, distribute passenger weight evenly throughout car.
30. During cold weather watch for icicles frozen to car frame. Up to 100 lbs. can be quickly accumulated! Unremoved snow and ice cause tremendous wind resistance. Warm water thrown on (or hosed on) will eliminate it fast.
SOME EXTRA TIPS
Install pressure regulator valve (sold in auto parts stores)… Use graphite motor oil… Beware of oil additives, regardless of advertising claims… Add Marvel Mystery Oil into gas fill-ups… Investigate fuel/water injection methods and products… combine short errands into one trip… Use special gas additives to prevent winter freezing of gas lines… convert your V8 engine over to a V4 – no special kits needed!!!
A Story and a Truth : Gas Savings !
|I always love going on Road Trips in the summer. It’s the period of the year when I like drive the most. Due to the recent hike in gas prices, I thought it might be a good idea to share this article with you. Even though gas prices don’t hurt my bottom line that much, I can truly feel the pain this must cause a lot of people. As a student I didn’t have a lot of money and the cost of gasoline was always a major issue for me. I have learned many ways of saving money for gas by improving my gas mileage.There are many things you can do, aside from going out and buying a more fuel efficient car, that will help you tremendously to cut down your gasoline expenses. Many require only minor adjustments to your driving style. I am going to review some well known techniques and some of my own that I used as a student. I have always been able to exceed the specified gas mileage of my car (even meeting the specified numbers is pretty tough). In my last article on gas prices, I speculated that those high prices are here to stay and that we will never see really cheap gas again. In this article I am going to talk a bit about what you can do to save gas. Changing your Driving Habits
Brake the right way
1. A car consumes most gas as it accelerates. It’s a simply law of physics (force equals mass times acceleration). A moving car doesn’t require much gasoline to keep moving (due to the inherent inertia). In real life this means, in order to improve your mileage you need to keep the ride smooth. Let me give you some examples.
2. If you own a hybrid powered car, the statement above applies even more to you. Try to avoid fast braking. Hybrid cars have the ability to convert braking power into electric energy and store them in their batteries. However this (induction) will only give yo so much braking power. If you need to decelerate faster, your brakes will engage and energy will be lost.
Turn off your air condition
3. This tip might be somewhat impractical in some areas. I would never dare to switch off the air condition of my car in Arizona in the Summer. However I also know that the compressor for the air conditioner loads the motor of my car more, which will reduce my fuel economy. I try not to use the air conditioner if I don’t have to.
Park your car in the shade if you can, so you won’t have to keep the AC working as hard when you go somewhere.
Turn off the AC 5 minutes before you reach your destination and don’t keep it working until the last second.
4. A manual transmission is truly fantastic. I can only encourage everyone to try it out. You can pretty much determine if you want a sporty shifting (at higher RPM) or a fuel efficient shifting (at low RPM). No matter how “intelligent” automatic transmissions are, they aren’t as smart as you. Due to the way an automatic transmission shifts, there are also higher losses associated with automatic transmissions. Overall a manual transmission can be a lot more fuel efficient.
5. If you have a cruise control and there isn’t a whole lot of traffic, you probably should use it (it will keep the speed constant and hence doesn’t need to accelerate).
I added some more information on shifting, down in the comments below this post.
8. Coming back to the force equals mass times acceleration. We already established that one shouldn’t accelerate as much. You can also try to reduce the mass of your car by emptying out the trunk and removing heavy items that you don’t need (keep your spare tire and car lift, but get rid of the gardening equipment).
Turn your car off
9. When you turn on a car, it uses a bit of gas. When the car is idling, it uses a fixed amount of gas over a period of time (especially with the AC on).
10. Yeah right. Obviously thats not something I am all that fond off being the leadfoot driver I am. Well, it’s a proven fact that driving fast will increase the drag (turbulence) and thus increase your fuel consumption, however I simply cannot bring myself to drive below the legal speed limit. It’s your choice. There is not that much difference between 60mph and 65mph in terms of fuel consumption. However I grew up in Germany (no speed limits). A car racing along at its maximum speed of 200km/h (depending on the car), would consume about twice as much gas as if it were driven at 160km/h. At the upper end of the power spectrum engines become very inefficient.
Ride the slipstream
11. This driving technique has given me some excellent mileage when I used to commute long distance a long time ago. Obviously, it requires a bit of skill and it’s not exactly recommended, since you should pay attention to the road and we all know, most people who read this just don’t. However it is probably one of the best “secret” fuel saving tips I can give you.
Close your windows
12. Believe it or not, but opening your windows will increase the turbulences and eventually cost you fuel. If you can, use only the ventilation system of your car. I cannot really gauge this against using the air conditioner. I believe that opening your windows at low speeds and using the air conditioner at high speeds gives you better fuel economy.
Fill up at Arco
13. Year after year Chevron and Shell are making new record earnings while squeezing the poor motorists for every penny. They advertise their expensive gasoline with buzzwords such as Techron, V-Power and some other BS words. Basically, that means they put some expensive stuff into the gas to sell it at a better profit. In fact, the gasoline of all gas stations flows through the same pipeline and the only difference is the magic stuff they poor into the gas to claim a cleaner burning fuel or better fuel efficiency. At the same time their average gas price is about 10c – 30c above other cheaper gas stations in the neighborhood. I can see no difference in my gas mileage when I empty a tank of Arco vs. a tank full off Techron enhanced souped-up high tech additive gas spritz. And if it cleans anything then certainly my wallet, which is all squeaky clean after filling up.
14. When I am on the road, I try to keep an eye open for gas prices along the way. If I see the price jumping down, i usually fill up. Some gas stations offer free coffee with fill up or a free hot dog, and if their gas costs the same as the gas across the street, I go for the coffee with my gas.
Pick a better route
15. Avoid heavy traffic and lots of traffic lights. The shortest route is not always the most fuel efficient if you have to stop a lot.
Cheap Car maintenance
Why cheap car maintenance? I don’t believe that spending a lot of money on fuel additives or special tires or whatever I see suggested elsewhere will really help you to improve your bottom line, and that’s what this article is about. For instance I do not believe that your fuel economy suffers much if you change your oil every 5000 miles instead of 3000 miles (but it does save money not to change oil that often).
Pump it up
16. Inflate your tires to the specified level (I usually go about 0.2 PSI above). This will reduce the contact area of your tire to the road and therefore reduce the friction. It will help you to get a slightly improved gas mileage.
Rent a smaller car
18. Remember that mass and acceleration equation? Well, a small car always has a better fuel economy due to its smaller mass. Smart budget travelers therefore rent smaller cars and don’t care much about the status a shiny big car conveys. They rather indulge in a good drink at the end of the day (when they don’t need to drive anymore) with all the gas money they saved. Their vacation pictures look just as glorious, but they still have pocket change for bigger prints.
19. Why are you driving around with that ski-, bicycle- or luggage-rack on your roof if you don’t need it? Didn’t you know that this increases the wind resistance of your car? Well now you do. Seriously, removing those will save you quite a bit of gasoline.
20. Chip tuning for your engine used to be pretty big way back when gas cost less then water. These days the buzzword is eco tuning. Many tuners offer replacement chips for your engine computer that increase the power while at the same time saving gas. How is this possible? Well to cut this already long article short, they improve both ends of the curve. At the upper end they give you more power (with reduced efficiency) and at the lower end a better efficiency. You choose with the gas pedal which mode to use. Make sure you use manufacturer approved tuners if you don’t want to lose your warranty.
Use the correct grade of motor oil
21. The grade of the oil pretty much tells us about the viscosity. If you use the wrong grade, you may increase the friction in your engine. It gets hotter and uses more gas.
23. Replace your air filter when you need to, or your mix won’t be right. However don’t replace it every time the mechanics tell you to (they make money with it). Try to find out how often you need a new filter.
Turn off the lights
24. Well, this one might be a safety concern. Many Rental Car companies have daylights enabled on their cars which are rather efficient. However every electrical equipment is powered from the alternator which will increase its load on the engine to produce more power. So when you can do it safely, turn off those headlights.
Here comes the discussion we don’t like to read as much.
25. Well, if two people are riding in a car, the gas used per person is immediately cut into half. If 4 people are sharing a ride, their individual gas bill becomes only one third. Since they can now use carpool lanes, they won’t have to spend as much time in traffic (idle engines use gas too) and get an even better gas mileage, plus they get home sooner. Its not always feasible though.
26. Try to combine trips. If you live outside of town, try to go into town only once and get everything you need done.
Fuel Efficient Cars
27. If you are in the market for a new car, you definitely should consider fuel efficiencies. However I wouldn’t buy a hybrid just for the better fuel economy if I weren’t in the market for a new car. You can easily calculate how much money you would save a year and weigh that against the cost of the car (plus the potentially higher maintenance cost).
28. Its not commonly known, but Diesel engines can give you a much better gas mileage than Hybrids on long distance drives. That’s one of the reasons, hybrids aren’t popular in Europe but Diesels are.
29. Don’t fill up unless you are on empty, since all this gas weighs a lot and as we have already learned (force equals …. – you know it). However I usually only do this when gas prices are falling or constant (so I can wait longer and get cheaper gas). When gas prices are rising, I fill up sooner. Due to the psychological impact of rising gas prices, people usually do the exact opposite, which will eventually cost them more.
30. The list still grows. Someone made an excellent suggestion for trucks in the forum. Dropping the tailgate of his small truck, Ronald is able to improve the aerodynamics and thus get a better gas mileage. Sounds plausible.
31. I also noticed that the first gas station you encounter after a long thirsty stretch is almost never the cheapest. After you leave a national park and didn’t have a chance to pump gas for a long time, the first station will often have slightly higher prices as everyone pulls over to fill up as soon as they can. I usually drive a little further to find a cheaper station.
32. I do not fill up on gas stations visible from the Interstate I am driving on or from the main freeways. I usually take an exit at a moderately sized city when I am on a road trip and head for the city center. Before I actually get there, I usually find much better deals. Location and Competition are the factors that determine local price fluctations.
This means you need to look for places with lots of competition (hence moderately sized city) and avoid prime locations (get away from the main roads). Large cities often have higher gas prices and are harder to navigate. On my last trip, I pulled over whenever I saw a station that had significantly lower prices then I had seen previously, even if my tank was only half-empty. On road trips, the rules are slightly different. Fill up whenever and wherever it is cheap and do not wait for yout tank to be empty.