How to Save Money on Car Fuel Prices

Save Money on Your Gas Bill

Rising fuel prices are a good enough reason to learn how to reduce costs, and save some of that extra money it's costing you.

Yes we know these points, yes, we have read them all before, but perhaps the frugal driving tips will make the difference.

  • The AA will tell you that your car must be serviced regularly as blocked filters will prevent the from engine functioning efficiently and raise emissions.
  • Use the correct specification engine oil to maintain optimum engine efficiency.
  • Tyre pressure should be regularly checked as under inflated tyres create resistance, and to increase tyre pressure when carrying heavier loads.
  • As the compressor for the air-conditioning , takes its power from the engine, it would increase gas consumption at low speeds, but is insignificant at high speeds.

Fuel Saving Gadgets - Do they work? Fifth Gear

Driving Tips - Save by Driving Frugally

Drive smoothly, accelerate gently and avoid unnecessary braking, these three things alone will save you so much money!

When you have to slow down, leave the car in gear, release the accelerator letting the car cruise to a stop. Working you way down through the gears is heavy on fuel, rather drop from your top gear to first gear.

It is not advisable to put the gear in neutral and cruise down a hill or to a stop, as you do not have full control of the car and it becomes a safety risk, taking the foot off the throttle means no gas at will be used, as the ECU cuts the fuel supply.

Change gear, without letting the engine labour, usually at 2,500 revs for petrol and 2000 revs for diesel cars. Accelerating hard and using high engine speeds obviously uses a lot of fuel. Driving steadily will reduce fuel consumption as will using the engine in its most efficient range.

  • Try to keep the car moving, stop/start driving uses more fuel, if you can a rolling stop is more efficient.
  • Learning how to react properly to road conditions, listen to the engine notes to change gears at the right time, slow down at crossroads, roundabouts, etc.
  • If faced with speed bumps, drive slowly as constant acceleration and braking will guzzle your gas.
  • Avoid short journeys. When an engine is cold it uses more gas because some of the fuel energy is used to heat the engine.

40 Fuel Economy Tips

More Tips to keep you going

Speed: According to the Department for Transport, driving at 70 mph uses up to 9% more fuel than at 60 mph and up to 15% more than at 50 mph. Going the other way, 80 mph uses 25% more than at 70 mph.

Roof Racks: The latest aerodynamic designs add little to the fuel bill, but a loaded open rack can add 30% to the gas bill, as it changes the aerodynamics of the car and increases drag.

An open window or sun roof will increase drag when driving at speeds over 65mph and add around 5% to the fuel bill.

Engine Size: A 2.0L engine will work less pulling the car, than a 1.6L engine on the same car, thereby reducing consumption and emissions.

Super-unleaded petrol will give at least 13 miles extra from a tank, this applies to a new and an old car, and slightly more using high quality diesel. The vehicle will run more efficiently, enabling improved combusion which reduces fuel consumption. The drawback back being it costs a little extra.

Plan your trip, and if you have several stops, work out the traffic flow and try to drive opposite to the way the traffic is moving. If people are travelling north to south on their way home, then leave earlier and start your errands in the South and travel north back to your starting point, thereby avoiding stop/start driving.

Avoid excessive idling - rather switch off if you are going to be stationary for some time.

When possible, share lifts, carpool and take turns in taking the children to/from school and their various activities.

Do not get lost, plan any unfamiliar routes, and check the traffic news before you go.

Measuring Gas Consumption

Use your car’s on board computer to take note of the overall fuel consumption you’re getting now. Reset it, and then see how much you can improve it by following the driving advice above.

If you don’t have this computer, find out the car manufacturer's quoted fuel consumption, out of the three different figures use the ‘combined’ figure.

To measure gas consumption, fill the tank and record the mileage. Ideally go back to the same pump at the same garage to fill the tank again. Now divide the total mileage travelled, by the total number of litres used and multiply by 4.546 to get miles per gallon.

Obviously you could do this exercise twice, once to see what your particular mileage is before applying the smoother driving principles, and then again after applying the better driving principles.

You will be very pleasantly surprised to see exactly how much money, driving in the above way, will save you at the pump .

© 2012 Shelley Watson

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Comments 10 comments

LouTucci profile image

LouTucci 4 years ago

Dear Shelley,

Thanks for all those tips! Anything we can do to save money is always a big plus!

Lou


Eric Calderwood profile image

Eric Calderwood 4 years ago from USA

Great tips on reducing fuel consumption and saving money on gas. If anyone has trouble implementing the smooth driving techniques above, just pretend that you are almost out of gas and that your destination is a gas station that you have to make it to without running out of gas. You'll drive more conservatively if you think you are about to run out of gas.


CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 4 years ago Author

Thank you so much Lou for the visit!

Eric, Thank for the great tip! I remember when I first started driving, I caught myself thinking that if I drove faster I'd get to the pump before the fuel ran out!


LouTucci profile image

LouTucci 4 years ago

He Shelley, good mornin'! Like most men, I guess, we tend to be creatures of habit...always running late and pulling up to the pump, throwing the guy $5.00...the problem is that on the way home, I have to put another $5! These prices are rediculous aren't they! Where are you any way - in the states?


CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 4 years ago Author

Hi Lou, it's good afternoon over here, it's 4.15pm! I am in South Africa, and $5.00 worth of petrol er gas, here will buy you about 3.5 litres - which won't get you too far. The price is ridiculous, but I believe there will be quite a big drop in June worldwide, which is great. Thanks Lou will be off to visit your hub!


LouTucci profile image

LouTucci 4 years ago

Thanks one again for reaching out to me Shelley. I never realized that I will have the opportunity to meet wonderful people all over the world!

Lou*


Desertarmor profile image

Desertarmor 4 years ago from Arizona

Thanks for the great tips, anyway to save money!


CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 4 years ago Author

Thank you Desertarmor, I appreciate the visit. Loved your hub on kennel training and Rebel!


CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 4 years ago Author

Pleasure Lou, I feel likewise, there are some very interesting hubbers and I am glad I joined!


LouTucci profile image

LouTucci 4 years ago

There you go! Enjoy*

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