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Driving Towards Savings: Tips to Improve Gas Mileage

Low gas light on a car

As a responsible member of Utah Community Credit Union (UCCU), we understand the importance of saving money wherever possible. One area where you can make a significant impact on your budget is by improving your vehicle’s gas mileage. Not only does this benefit your wallet, but it also reduces your carbon footprint. Here are some practical tips to help you get better gas mileage and maximize your savings. Here are some tips to improve gas milage.

Keep Your Vehicle Well-Maintained: 

Regular maintenance is key to ensuring your vehicle operates efficiently. Schedule routine oil changes, replace air filters as needed, and keep your tires properly inflated. A well-maintained vehicle can improve gas mileage by up to 4%.

Drive Sensibly: 

Aggressive driving habits such as speeding, rapid acceleration, and sudden braking can significantly reduce fuel efficiency. Practice smooth and steady driving, obey speed limits, and anticipate stops to avoid unnecessary fuel consumption. Remember, every time you hit the brakes, you’re wasting energy that could have been used to keep your vehicle moving forward efficiently.

Avoid Excessive Idling:

Idling consumes fuel without getting you anywhere. If you anticipate being stopped for more than a minute, such as waiting in a drive-thru or for a train to pass, consider turning off your engine. Restarting your car uses less fuel than idling for an extended period.

Use Cruise Control: 

Maintaining a constant speed on the highway can improve gas mileage by reducing fluctuations in speed. Utilize cruise control when driving on flat terrain to help you maintain a consistent pace and conserve fuel.

Reduce Wind Resistance:

Wind resistance increases at higher speeds, causing your vehicle to work harder and consume more fuel. Avoid driving with open windows, especially at highway speeds, as this can create drag. Additionally, remove roof racks or carriers when not in use to minimize aerodynamic drag.

Plan Efficient Routes:

Combine errands into one trip to minimize unnecessary driving. Use GPS or smartphone apps to find the most efficient routes with minimal traffic congestion and fewer stops. Avoid rush hour whenever possible to prevent wasting fuel in stop-and-go traffic.

Lighten Your Load:

Carrying excess weight in your vehicle can decrease gas mileage. Remove unnecessary items from your trunk and cargo area to reduce the vehicle’s weight and improve fuel efficiency. Every 100 pounds of extra weight can reduce MPG by up to 2%.

Use the Right Fuel: 

Refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual to determine the recommended fuel type. Using a higher octane fuel than necessary does not improve performance or fuel efficiency and only adds unnecessary costs.

Keep Your Gas Cap Secure:

A loose or damaged gas cap can cause fuel to evaporate from your vehicle, decreasing gas mileage and harming the environment. Make sure your gas cap is tightly sealed after refueling to prevent fuel vapor leaks.

Consider Eco-Friendly Driving Habits: 

Modern vehicles often come equipped with eco-driving features such as eco-mode or hybrid drive modes. Explore these options to optimize your vehicle’s performance for better fuel efficiency.

Get Better Gas Milage Today

By incorporating these tips into your driving routine, you can improve your vehicle’s gas mileage and save money at the pump. At UCCU, we are committed to helping our members achieve financial success, and adopting fuel-efficient driving habits is just one way to reach your savings goals while also contributing to a cleaner environment. Drive smart, save money, and enjoy the journey towards a brighter financial future!