Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Going Broke Just Filling Up Your Vehicle?

Gas prices have hit record highs around the country, and motorists are expected to pay even more at the pump in the coming months. “Consumers are tired of feeling like they are spending their whole paycheck just to fill up their tanks,” said Randy Fisher, Director of Consumer Marketing at Royal Purple. “No one is talking about what preventative measures can be taken to help combat the rising gas prices and help consumers stretch the value of their dollar. That’s why we have compiled these basic, easy tips for consumers to help make that hard earned dollar last.”

•    Keep tires properly inflated. Under-inflated tires can cut fuel economy by a half percent per pound of pressure below recommended levels.
•    Do not purchase mid-grade or premium gasoline unless it is considered necessary by the vehicle's manufacturer. Using self-serve regular fuel compared to premium can save an average of 17 cents per gallon.
•    Give your car a full tune-up, as recommended by the manufacturer.  A misfiring spark plug can greatly reduce gas mileage. Follow the service schedules listed in your owner's manual. Replace filters and fluids as recommended. A poorly tuned engine can increase fuel consumption by up to 50 percent or more.
•    Don't let the vehicle idle for more than a minute. Idling consumes half-a-gallon to one gallon of gas per hour and wastes more fuel than restarting the engine.
•    Keep windows closed when traveling at highway speeds. Open windows cause air drag, reducing your mileage by 10%.
•    Use overdrive. If your car is equipped with overdrive gearing (on 5-speed manual transmissions and 4-speed automatic transmissions), be sure to make use of the overdrive gear as soon as your speed is high enough. Your owner's manual can give you further information.
•    Get regular oil and filter changes and switch to a high-performance synthetic motor oil. 

As average car with a 15-gallon tank that saves 3 miles per gallon, would save 45 miles per tank full. If you fill up your tank once a week, that's 2340 miles per year or an average of 117 gallons of fuel.  At $3.79 a gallon, you’d save more than $443 annually. If you follow the suggestions outlined above, you'll get five, six, even seven extra miles per gallon.

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