Five Ways to Save Gas Money Every Day
FuelCinic.com is more than just a website where you can track your fuel mileage – we’re starting a program to help educate drivers on how they can start saving money right away – using techniques that have been developed over the last several years. Some people call these techniques “thrifty driving” or “hypermiling” – but they are more commonly known as “eco-driving”.
Here are the 5 “golden” rules of eco-driving:
- Shift up as soon as possible
Shift up between 2,000 and 2,500 RPM. If your vehicle has a powerful engine, many times you can shift up as low as 1,800 RPM. Up-shifting early maximizes your engines mechanical advantage and improves fuel mileage. Experiment with this technique in an area without traffic to learn how your particular car handles during early up-shifting. (Note: With a manual transmission, up-shifting much too early can cause stalling.)
- Maintain a steady speed
Use the highest gear possible and drive with low engine RPM. Avoid accellerating in cases where you’ll have to rapidly brake, such as stop-lights or stop-and-go traffic congestion. If you have an automatic transmission with an economy mode, make sure you use it. Avoid using “sport” mode.
- Anticipate traffic flow
Look ahead as far as possible and anticipate the surrounding traffic patterns. Slow early if the cars ahead of you are braking or stopping. Allow tailgaters and aggressive drivers to pass you safely.
- Maintain rolling momentum
When you have to slow down or to stop, decelerate smoothly by releasing the accelerator in time, leaving the car in gear. Many times a red light will turn green before you must stop completely. By maintaining some rolling momentum you will decrease the amount of fuel needed to accelerate back to the posted speed limit.
- Smooth is efficient
If you follow rules 1 thru 4 you are well on your way to being a “smooth operator”. If you adopt these simple techniques, and combine them with an overall stress-free smooth driving style, you can slash your fuel consumption by 25% or more (some tests reflect 31% average). Discover what works for you. Leave a little sooner for appointments, let aggressive drivers pass, chill out with commercial-free music (iPod, satellite, CDs).
Getting involved with your fuel efficiency is the key to making real improvements to your fuel mileage. Chances are that you can achieve near-hybrid MPG performance in the vehicle you already own. Tracking you MPG in real-time using an on-board instrument will show you exactly what works and what doesn’t. Tracking your mileage over time will help you understand the long-term benefits of fuel savings.
Over the next few weeks we’ll be bringing you additional information that will help you save gas money.