If you are regularly commuting around Springfield, there is no doubt you are looking for ways to improve your gas mileage. After all, as gas prices fluctuate, you want to keep your fuel costs reasonable.
But you may think that energy efficiency is fixed, getting whatever was posted on the sales sticker when you bought your vehicle. These statistics are what the vehicle was manufactured to get when operating at peak efficiency. However, your car does not operate at top efficiency all the time.
Unload Your Vehicle for Gas Mileage
Weight is one of the biggest factors affecting fuel efficiency. The more weight you transport, the harder your engine has to work. The more your engine works, the more fuel you consume.
Most people do not even think about all the weight in their vehicle. Do you carry tools or fluids for your car everywhere you go? What about stuff from work that you do not need on a daily basis?
All of this adds up and increases your fuel costs. Simply cleaning out your car and removing unnecessary items can improve your fuel efficiency by 1%-2%.
Keep an Eye on Your Tires
Your tires are a critical part of your vehicle, and one that is easily forgotten until you find you have a flat. When your tire pressure is low you drop your fuel efficiency by about 0.2% for each 1psi your tire is low. If your tire is 10psi low, then you have just lost 2% efficiency right there.
If you notice your vehicle’s tire pressure is frequently running low, then you should have the tires inspected. It may be as simple as cleaning up the rim from oxidation that causes additional air to leak.
Don’t worry about trying to find time to get to a tire shop to have your tires serviced. MTS Express offers mobile repair services, coming right to your home or place of work. These services range from simple balancing and rotating all the way to full replacement.
Get Regular Maintenance
Regular maintenance is key to keeping your vehicle running properly, avoiding costly repairs, and extending the life of your engine. Simple maintenance that can negatively affect your fuel efficiency include:
- Dirty air filters
- Overdue oil changes
- Improper alignment
- Poorly calibrated fuel injectors
- Misfiring spark plugs
Upgrade Your Driving Skills
How you drive has as much to do with fuel efficiency as your vehicle being properly maintained. If you change the way in which you drive, you can improve your fuel efficiency by as much as 40%. Here are common driving habits that increase your costs:
- Hard stopping
- Rapid acceleration
- Higher speeds
- Constantly changing speeds
- Using four wheel drive
- Driving with one foot on the break
Not only do these habits increase your fuel costs, but they also increase the wear on your vehicle. By changing these habits, you will reduce your overall operating costs and improve gas mileage.
Avoid Long Idling for Fuel Efficiency
Idling is one of the hardest things on your car and its efficiency. You are expending a minimal amount of fuel to keep the engine running, but you are gaining nothing in return. While winters in Springfield can be cold and summers warm, try to keep your idling down to under 30 seconds at a time.
Your car uses between one quarter and one half a gallon for each hour of idling, depending on the accessories you have running. That means when you shut your car off instead of idling for 10 minutes waiting for someone, you have just saved $0.50 and $1.50, depending on the gas prices around Springfield. You also save on the wear on your engine and reduce the impact on the environment.