Do It Yourself: Improve Your MPG

November 15, 2011

Do you keep unnecessary junk in your car? Our mechanics often find piles of needless items in customer vehicles. Your son’s hockey equipment, your spouse’s presentation materials, your daughter’s entire wardrobe….you name it. These items weigh down the vehicle causing a decrease in its miles per gallon (MPG).

The #1 way to make sure you get the most mileage for every tank of gas is to take the junk out of the trunk.

But, how else can you improve your vehicle’s fuel economy?

1. Drive carefully. Enjoy your drive and avoid accelerating and braking abruptly. It wastes gasoline.

2. Observe speed limits. Gas mileage typically decreases significantly over 60 mph. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can expect to pay 28 cents more per gallon of gas for every 5 mph over 60.

3. Keep your car in shape! Have a trusted mechanic tune the engine and always maintain proper tire pressure. Check your owner’s manual for proper maintenance schedules and obey them.

4. Avoid idling. Turn the car off when not in use. You’re still using gas and even more so if you have the air and radio on!

5. Use the air conditioner. You might think rolling the windows down will save gas. However, open windows create a drag on the vehicle and make it work harder. Roll the windows up and use the A/C – especially if you’re on the highway.

What about you? Do you pay attention to your gas mileage? What else do you do to keep your gasoline costs down?