Improve Your Gas Mileage
Editors Note: We all want to save money on gas, and with gas prices climbing, we all need to look at ways to improve gas mileage. The following article will help you save money on gasoline and increase your gas mileage.
Gas Saving Tips from the Pros
(ARA) - They're up, they're down, they're back up. Gas prices got you down? If telecommuting and pubic transportation are not viable options for you, here's some down-to-earth advice from the pros at the non-profit National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).
It is important to keep your vehicle properly maintained and change your driving habits so as to maximize your mileage, according to ASE officials. Here's a plan of action from the group that tests and certifies automotive technicians:
Monitor your tires. Under-inflated tires or poorly aligned wheels waste fuel by forcing the engine to work harder. Let the tires cool down before checking the air pressure. Out-of-line wheels, as evidenced by uneven tread wear, should be aligned by a professional.
Consolidate your daily trips and errands. Some trips may be unnecessary. Also, try to travel when traffic is light so you can avoid stop-and-go conditions.
Avoid excessive engine idling. Shut off your vehicle while waiting for friends and family.
Observe speed limits. Speeding decreases your miles per gallon.
Drive gently. Sudden accelerations guzzle gas. Anticipate traffic patterns and adjust your speed gradually. Use cruise control. (You'll help your brakes and suspension system last longer, too.)
Get rid of excess weight by removing unnecessary items from the vehicle. Store only essentials in the trunk. Less weight means better mileage. After family vacations, make sure you remove all unnecessary items, including that roof-top cargo carrier.
Use windows and air conditioning wisely. Your mileage should improve if you keep the windows closed at highway speeds, since air drag is reduced. This is true even with the air conditioning on -- assuming that the system is in good working order. If possible, try to avoid using your air conditioner in heavy, stop-and-go traffic such as traffic jams or holiday weekend back-ups.
Be a sensible patriot. Everyone loves the flag. But show your patriotism by affixing a decal rather than hoisting a large flapping U.S. flag, which increases air resistance.
Keep your engine operating at its "peak efficiency." A well-maintained engine will help you maximize the gas mileage for your specific make and model. A misfiring spark plug can greatly reduce gas mileage. Follow the service schedules listed in your owner's manual. Replace filters and fluids as recommended; have engine performance problems (rough idling, poor acceleration, etc.) corrected at a repair facility. Given today's high-tech engines, it's wise to have this type of work done by auto technicians who are ASE certified in engine performance.
These conservation tips will not only save gasoline, they'll help extend the life of your vehicle and help you conserve precious natural resources. Patriotism, indeed.
The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) was founded in 1972 as a non-profit, independent organization dedicated to improving the quality of automotive service and repair through the voluntary testing and certification of automotive technicians. ASE-certified technicians wear blue and white ASE shoulder insignia and carry credentials listing their exact area(s) of certification. Their employers often display the blue and white ASE sign.
Visit www.asecert.org for more information.
Courtesy of ARA Content