10 Driving Tips to Save Money and the Environment
Fuel costs have been rising steadily for a few years and probably won’t be going down any time soon. At the same time, CO2 emissions have more than doubled in the last twenty years. We have tried to avoid the issue for years, but we are finally hitting a road block where we need to accept that we have no choice but to change our driving habits. You may or may not agree with Al Gore’s take on global warming, but you can’t deny that pollution causes serious problems for our environment.
Economists usually tell us to drive less, but this isn’t practical advice for many of us. We live busy lives, but we can at least change our driving habits to reduce our gas bill and protect the environment at the same time. Here are ten ways you can conserve fuel:
1. Check your cars air filter. One in four cars on the road has a problem with its air filter. If you are one of those cars, you should replace it. Doing so can save up to 10% on fuel.
2. Keep the front end your car aligned. If the front end of your car isn’t properly aligned, your engine and tires will have to work a lot harder. This causes your car to use up to 10% more on gas.
3. Get an engine tune up. Make sure that you get regular tune ups. Doing so will keep your car running properly and help you save on your gas costs.
4. Properly inflate your tires. Properly maintaining your tires will help keep your car in alignment and running smoothly.
5. Check your gas cap. It is a common mistake for people to forget to tighten the gas cap after filling their tank. When you leave your cap off, your gas evaporates along with all the money you put into it.
6. Drive a bit slower. When you drive faster, your engine has to work harder. You can save about 7% of your fuel every time you reduce your speed by 5 miles per hour.
7. Maintain a consistent speed. Try to drive as smoothly as possible. Constantly accelerating and reducing your speed can cause you to waste a third of your gas.
8. Don’t ride the brakes. Not only is this bad for your brakes, but it can force you to spend 35% more on fuel.
9. Don’t drive with heavy loads in your vehicle. Clean out the trunk of your car and don’t drive with more than you need to. You are putting more stress on your engine and can be using up a lot more fuel than you think.
10. You don’t always need to warm up your car. Some of us have been told that we need to warm our car every three minutes to keep it from stalling. This is true in freezing temperatures, but otherwise you are only wasting more of your gas.
As much as we hate high gas prices, they probably aren’t going down anytime soon. Practicing better driving skills will save you money on fuel and make your car last longer at the same time. The environment is going to thank for your efforts as well.