Ways to Cut down on Gas Consumption
Gas in the US is nothing like as expensive as it is in Western Europe. In Michigan, on average, drivers are spending in 2019 something like $2.75 to $2.95 a gallon. That’s not a bad deal, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be finding ways to cut down. Reducing your gas consumption can bring amazing savings in the long run; savings that you could put towards a family vacation, or even a new car! Below we’ll get you started with some ways you can cut down on your rate of gas guzzle.
First, turning off the engine when you can clearly see you’ll be idling for more than a minute or so is a good start. Some claim that keeping the engine running is more economical than stopping and starting again, and that’s true if your stop is under 30 seconds. Each time you start the engine, you use about as much as gas as idling for 30 seconds. So, in long lines or heavy traffic jams, switch off the engine.
Another thing you can do is to reduce your speed and keep a steady pace. The cycle of acceleration followed by deceleration, acceleration and deceleration again is where you’re wasting the most gas. Even small increases in RPMs greatly increase gas consumption. Use cruise control on the highway, and at other times maintain a nice steady speed for as long as possible.
If you drive a stick, then try to remain in a higher gear as that will keep RPMs down and thus improve your overall gas mileage. Finally, you can consider carpooling with workmates if you live conveniently on the route. This is a huge saving, allowing you cut down your car use as much as 80 percent during the working week.
Outside of Driving
If you’re in a built-up area, use the bus for short trips. Better yet, take a walk! Any journey under a mile is easily walkable. Many of us waste gallons and gallons of gas each year starting the engine and making the short, accelerated trip down the street. Your body will thank you for the exercise, and once again the gas level in your car remains unchanged.
For longer distances, use a bike if possible. You’ll be surprised how far you can get quickly you can get places when you cycle instead of walking.
There’s a lot you can do to save gas, some of which can even bring you added benefit like exercise. Another good method is to consult with your dealership when you’re buying or leasing your next car as to your preferred model’s estimated gas mileage. That will tell you a lot about how much you’ll save over time.