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10 Ways to Save Money on Gas

Updated on June 2, 2011

1.  Air Conditioning -  This first one is a bit on the iffy side of things.  Some say this will help and others say it won't although the argument lies more in the question of how much it matters rather than if it does.  It may not save you $10 every time you get in the car, but hey, every little bit helps.  Basically, try not to use your air conditioning as much.  It takes away some of the power from your engine therefore causing you engine to work harder which requires more gas.

2. Accelerating Slowly - This is a big one.  When you're getting on the highway it's better to stop and slow down a little to let a car go rather than pushing the pedal to the floor to get in front of them.  Think of it this way.  The harder you push down on that pedal, the faster that gas is being used up.

3. Coasting - When you see a big hill in the highway, take advantage of it.  Coast downhill.  Use the decline to keep your car rolling rather than speeding down. Although if you need to speed up, it's better to do so going downhill than uphill.

4.  Constant Speed - As you're driving, it's best to try and maintain a constant speed.  This will keep you from speeding up, slowing down, speeding up, slowing down, pounding the pedal, losing momentum, pounding the pedal, losing momentum.  Catch my drift?  This way you're pumping less gas to maintain the speed.  As mentioned before, use hills to your advantage.

5.  Cruise Control - This is another one that's rather debatable.  It depends a lot on where you're driving.  If you're driving up a mountain side this may not be the best option, but if you're on a straight stretch of highway, this will help you accomplish all the things mentioned above (except air conditioning obviously).  A machine can maintain a steady pace much easier than a human foot.

6.  Buying Gas - This one may or may not surprise you, but buy gas less often.  Try to fill your tank if you notice the gas prices are low or may be rising.  I know this isn't always an option, but it can help.  Not only could you get more gas for less cash, but it also means less trips through the gas station, possibly even out of your normal route.

7.  In Idle - A lot of new cars don't waste much gas in idle, but not everyone has a new car, and as I said before, every little bit helps.  If you find yourself in serious traffic, turn the car off.  I'm not asking that you sit in 90 degree heat, that would be an obvious exception, but if the car is off, it's using less gas than when it's running.

8.  Windows - Judging by the very first piece of advice, many might think that using their windows to cool down is a good choice, but it actually may not be.  It can create a drag effect and actually push much more air against the car and in the car, forcing it to work harder to maintain the same speed.  Therefore, it's using more gas.  Usually there is an option on the air conditioning nob that has little white figures rather than blue (which means air conditioning).  If you use only air from outside, rather than cooling the air, you may be able to avoid air conditioning and open windows.  Of course if you're only driving through town, windows are fine.  This is more for on the highway.

9. Highway - Speaking of highway, use it more often.  Although sometimes trips through town are more pleasant, taking the highway is much more economically-sound.  Even though you're traveling at a higher speed, you're making fewer stops and starts: less traffic lights and less stop-and-go traffic in general.

10. Driving Slower - Lastly--this is probably the easiest one--drive slower in general.  Not only is it safer, but it saves gas.  The only thing that's hurt by driving slowly is your travel time, but let's face it.  Is it really that much of a big deal to get to Wal*Mart at 11:02?  I'm pretty sure all or most of them are open 24 hours a day.  There's no need to rush.  Driving can be pleasant, and above all relatively cheap.


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  • scla profile image

    scla 7 years ago from Southern California

    Good information on how to help decrease your gas costs. There are some good applications available on cell phones that help you find the cheapest gas prices around your area. This is another resource to possibly use to reduce your gas costs.

  • kassishae profile image

    kassishae 7 years ago from Ohio

    Thank you both for the info! I had forgotten about the morning gas trick. And I had actually read up on some of that information, Mr. Brown, but thank you for the detail. =)

  • Neil Sperling profile image

    Neil Sperling 7 years ago from Port Dover Ontario Canada

    One more point - fill your car early in the morning - the gas is at it's coolest temp in the storage tanks and thus you take advantage of a denser product = "More gas per gallon."

  • Wayne Brown profile image

    Wayne Brown 7 years ago from Texas

    Fuel-consumption does encompass the above subjects. The litmus test for fuel useage is about "rolling-resistance". In essence, Mass (the vehicle), frictional resistance (road surface/wind), and the power applied to overcome that resistance. We burn most of our fuel in stop and go driving as we overcome the rolling resistance necessary to go from zero to 35 mph. Above 35 mph, aerodynamics and wind resistance come into play and as speed increase these become greater factors than the initial rolling resistance. That's today lesson! WB