Are you one of those people that sit back and complain about gas prices all of the time? About how it isn’t fair that you have no control over how much a gallon of fuel costs you at the pump? You aren’t alone. Most of us have spent more than a few minutes whining about the cost of unleaded, yet very few of us have done anything to improve our situation. Instead of preaching about the prices you have to pay, take some steps to use less gas and make your stops at the gas station less and less frequent.
Bad Habits you Don’t Know About
You might think of yourself as a good driver because you keep your eye on the road and drive at a reasonable speed most of the time. While it is good to keep yourself safe while driving, there is more to being a good driver than that. With a smart approach behind the wheel and some attention to detail, you will be able to not only stay safe but actually save money in the process.
Most drivers do things on the road on a daily basis that actually waste gas. You probably assume that you will use the same amount of gas per mile no matter how you get there – but that isn’t true. The following habits will hurt your mileage and end up costing you more of your hard earned money at the pump each month.
- Accelerating quickly – When you stomp on the gas pedal coming off a stoplight, you are rushing gas into the engine faster than is needed. Sure your car might jump off the line, but what’s the rush? If you ease your way into the acceleration, you will use far less gas and reach the same speed in just a couple extra seconds. Make this adjustment to your driving habits and you will not waste nearly as much gas when stuck in stop-and-go traffic.
- Getting Stuck in Right Lane – We’ve all been there – you are rolling along in the right lane when you suddenly come up on a trucker and have to slow way down. Between the act of slowing down and then accelerating back up to speed in order to pass, you have used about 30% more fuel than you needed to. A better idea is to keep your eyes ahead and make any lane changes in advance so you don’t have to slow down. This technique will keep your speed even throughout the trip and greatly improve your fuel economy.
- Going too fast – Everyone loves to fly along in the left lane, but that speed is costing you money. Going 70 uses more fuel per mile than going 50, so watch your speed if you want to use less gas. Also, keeping your speed under control will prevent you from getting a speeding ticket, which would cost even more cash.
Bottom Line – Be Smart
None of the techniques you need to use on the road to save gas are all that complicated or involved. Simply keep your eyes down the road, accelerate smoothly, and try to maintain a reasonable speed. Just like with preventative maintenance, the savings from good driving can add up quickly. If you are able to do just those three basic things each time you drive, your bank account will thank you.