With the economy still struggling to recover, most people are continuing to search for ways to save money in their daily lives.
One area that should not be overlooked is driving. A great deal of money can be saved through a few tips that will help conserve gasoline and prevent early maintenance costs.When it comes to saving money on the expense of driving, changing just a few habits can go a long way. One of the main areas is trying to save money on fuel. Since gas prices are not likely to come back down anytime soon, using as little of it while still performing day to day chores is a must.
*The driver – The largest savings on fuel and maintenance costs can be realized by the driver of the vehicle. One that does not drive aggressively, such as speeding, rapidly accelerating and frequently hitting the brakes, can save the most. Driving in a manner such as this can lower fuel mileage by as much as 33 percent on the highway. Going faster than 50 miles per hour not only uses fuel more inefficiently, it can pose a hazard which may lead to repair bills. If it’s available, use the cruise control. This also increases the car’s gas mileage.
*Plan ahead – Before setting out on any trip that will require multiple stops, be sure to plan them out. Combine errands into one trip rather than spacing them out over several days. Make sure the route is familiar and set it up so there is little or no backtracking. When traveling some place that is unknown, be sure to have directions. Nothing wastes more fuel than being lost.
*Maintenance – Make sure the vehicle is in the best working order possible. Tuning the engine can improve fuel efficiency. If the oxygen sensors are not working properly, have them repaired or replaced as soon as possible. Check the tires and be sure they are inflated to the proper pressure. While the savings on fuel for properly inflated tires is minimal, this step can keep the tires from needing to be replaced sooner.
*Extra weight – Avoid using the vehicle as a storage unit and remove any excess weight. This is especially true for smaller cars. If extra cargo needs to be hauled, try to do it in the trunk rather than using a carrier on the roof that will increase wind resistance.
*Find alternatives – Consider creating a car pool group with co-workers, friends or neighbors that may work in similar locations. Each person can save on gas money, while rotating driving shifts will reduce daily wear and tear on each vehicle.
Cutting expenses has become a necessary part of everyday living for most people. When it comes to cars, better driving habits and continued maintenance can lead to big savings down the line.
Jane Simpson has changed her driving habits to reduce her fuel consumption and save money. She writes for a website that has a useful car interest calculator to help illustrate the monthly cost of purchasing a new vehicle.
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