Car Care Tips

Driving Habits

  • Clean your car regularly. Mud can weigh down the undercarriage of your car, slowing you down.
  • Consolidate your daily trips and errands. Restarting your engine uses a lot of gas, so plan your errands with as few stops as possible.
  • Whenever possible, avoid air conditioning. Keep in mind, however, that driving at higher speeds with windows open creates drag.
  • Change speeds gradually. Sudden stops and speed increases use more gas than gradual changes, so don’t throttle the gas or brake hard.
  • Don’t idle for long periods of time. Turn off the engine if you anticipate a lengthy wait, or you will use more gas than it takes to restart the engine.
  • Limit car warm-ups during the wintertime.
  • Clear unnecessary items from the trunk. More weight results in more drag.
  • Avoid high speeds. Although high speeds are nearly impossible to resist, you can improve your gas mileage by nearly 15 percent by driving at 55 mph rather than 65 mph.
  • Use overdrive. If your car is equipped with overdrive gearing, use it as soon as your speed is high enough.
  • Use cruise control. Keeping a steady speed is ideal for improving your gas mileage.

Servicing Your Vehicle

  • Improve your engine’s spark. This will allow the air and fuel mixture to be burnt better.
  • Improve your intake/output system. Efficient intake of gas and output of exhaust will improve your vehicle’s overall performance and gas mileage.
  • Reduce friction. Use high-quality or synthetic motor oil.
  • Check your oil! Low oil levels force your engine to work harder.
  • Change your filters. Dirty filters may increase the amount of fuel your vehicle uses by 10 percent.
  • Keep tires properly inflated and aligned. Check regularly to ensure that your wheels are fully inflated and that your car’s wheels are properly aligned.
  • Get regular engine tune-ups and car maintenance checks. A lot can go wrong with a car, so check for needed repairs on a regular basis. Damaged spark plugs or transmission problems can also contribute to poor gas mileage.