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How to Save Money at the Gas Pump

Updated on April 18, 2008

We're car pooling, taking public transit, consolidating our errands, but is there something more we can do to save gas and money? Turns out there is. Read on.

An employee of the fuel industry clued me in on some little known facts. This first one is probably the most valuable. Did you know that when you go to fill up and squeeze that gas pump so that the maximum amount of fuel comes out, 3-4 % of that fuel, THAT YOU'RE PAYING FOR, goes back into the backflow system and not your fuel tank?

Over a years time that adds up to a lot of fuel, and with today's prices, a LOT of money. The solution is simple. When fueling, set the handle at the first or second notch only. Let the gas trickle into your fuel tank instead of gush. All it will cost you is a little bit of patience and an extra minute or two. The other benefit is that you won't get dizzy looking at the numbers spin uncontrollably on the meter.

Another trick to getting more gas for your dollar is to fuel up when it's cold. Early morning is best since the underground tanks will have had all night to cool down from the heat of the day. Cool gasoline is more compressed or dense. I was told the compressed gas from a fill up is the equivalent of an extra gallon of gas.

Fill up when your tank is at the ½ full mark; this allows for less space in your tank for fumes which evaporate.

Quit lead footing it! I can't tell you how many drivers still jackrabbit off the line; tear down the street, only to be stopped at the next traffic light. Most newer model cars have a handy console computer that calculates your gas mileage while driving.. From my observation, the slower you are off the mark and the more evenly you accelerate and maintain a cruise speed, the more efficient your gas mileage.

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