There are some surprisingly simple ways to reduce your gas spending and save some extra cash that can go toward other expenses (such as that nice vacation you’ve been thinking about). This post highlights some of the best tips for saving on gas consumption and spending less, too.
Saving at the Pump: Simple Ways to Reduce Your Gas Spending …
Time your pump times
In most parts of the U.S., gas stations often increase their pump price just before the weekend in anticipation of the weekend travel rush. They know most of us will be traveling or running errands. (The weekend is always a time where I work around the house and get a few groceries.) I’ve also noticed the same pricing pattern goes for holiday periods as I travel across the state to visit family. As a result, I’ve planned my pump dates so I fill up my tank before a price increase. A great piece of insight I’ve gained from Chris Faulkner, president and CEO of Breitling Energy Corporation, is getting gas on Wednesdays and early Thursdays when prices are lower.
Also, it is best to fill up your tank in the mornings or at night, according to Money Crashers. This is because gas is usually denser in the cool hours of the morning or evening, making it easier to get more on the gallon.
Drive the right way
I love traveling, but I’ve experienced more than a few drivers who like to behave recklessly on the road. Driving responsibly and obeying traffic rules and speed limits actually can improve gas mileage. Driving erratically, in a road rage, or braking and revving suddenly all can contribute to higher fuel use versus driving calmly.
When traveling, I’ve learned that using cruise control to maintain safe and medium speeds is actually best for gas mileage. High speeds increase drag, which demands more fuel consumption. I’ve also noticed when traveling with friends that different vehicles can have very different gas mileage simply due to variations in aerodynamics. Boxy vehicles, vehicles that have non-aerodynamic objects on them or vehicles carrying too much weight can drag more and consume more fuel.
My dog also contributes to fuel consumption. My dog loves to have his head out the window as much as the next dog; however, leaving my windows open increases wind resistance, which can contribute to drag and increase fuel consumption.
Drive a fuel efficient car
Our family recently purchased an eco-friendly car. My previous vehicle was an older SUV. If you are thinking of purchasing a new car, opt for a more fuel efficient one. To those driving gas hogs, make sure they are properly maintained to bolster their fuel efficiency. According to Good Housekeeping, a clean air filter improves gas mileage by up to 10 percent.
The one thing I really appreciated about my older SUV was it had a manual transmission. A manual transmission is usually more fuel efficient than an automatic transmission. A few of my close friends aren’t considering fuel-efficient vehicles. So they have to remain careful about the places they fill their tank, as well as the gas they use to fill up. Before switching to my eco-friendly vehicle, I consulted with my mechanic to be sure about high-octane fuel so I would not spend unnecessarily on premium fuel.
Leveraging technology is often one of the most effective means of saving fuel. Some apps help me determine the traffic pattern to my destination. Following a path with less traffic means fewer stops and starts, which helps me save more. I have an iPhone, so I typically use INRIX for traffic, maps and routes. The same applies to routes with fewer stop signs and traffic lights.
It's also easy to find apps that show which gas stations have the most competitive gas prices in your area. GasBuddy is one of the best apps I've used for finding cheaper gas prices.
What tips do you have to save on fuel every month?
Matt Rhoney is an avid reader on trending topics and a writer in his spare time. On the beautiful coast of North Carolina, you usually will find him catching up on the latest news with locals or on the beach surfing, kayaking or paddleboarding. He loves writing pieces on health, fitness and wellness, but often writes about families and safety.