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Quick Tips for Saving Money at the Pump

By Guest Blogger(view all posts by savingtools.com)
at 9:30AM Wednesday February 15, 2012
under Money Saving Tips

While there isn't much you can do about the rising cost of gasoline, there are plenty of ways to save money on gas by changing some simple habits. Just by making a few of these adjustments, you will notice that you're putting less gas in your car and saving money on the gas you buy.
Fill up at the Right Time of Day

If you buy your gas in the middle of a hot day, the gas begins to evaporate as soon as you start pumping. Plan to fill up in the early morning or the evening so you more of the gasoline goes into your tank rather than into the air.

Avoid Additional Charges

Watch for stations that charge extra for using a credit card. Use cash to avoid those additional fees.

Buy Gas More Efficiently

Go ahead and fill up your tank every time you stop for gas. Buying gas a few dollars at a time is actually more expensive because you have to burn fuel to drive to the gas station for every additional stop. Let your tank get down to the last quarter before you fill up because your car will be lighter and burn less fuel as the tank empties.

Turn the Car off Instead of Idling 

Idling for more than a couple of minute's burns more fuel than restarting the car when you have to sit for a while. Turn off the car when you know you won't need to move for a few minutes.

Consolidate Trips and Plan the Best Routes

Make a plan before you hit the road. Think about all of the errands you need to run in a normal week and plan them all for the same trip if you can. Organize your trip so that you take the shortest, most efficient route between stops.

Turn off the AC

Your car's air conditioner burns extra fuel. Unless the temperature is unbearable, try to live without the AC as much as possible. At slower speeds, it is more fuel efficient to roll down your windows. On the highway, you should leave the windows up and use the car's fan.

Share the Ride and the Cost of Fuel

Carpool and rideshare when you can so that everyone splits the cost of fuel evenly. Even if you carpool with one other person, both of you will spend half as much on gasoline than you would have spent if you were driving separately.

Take Advantage of New Car Technology

Modern cars are lighter and more fuel efficient than older models. They also come equipped with technology like cruise control that allows you to travel at consistent speeds. Trade in your older car for something that is smaller and lighter and you will notice a difference in gas mileage right away. 

Avoid Quick Starts and Stops

Accelerate and decelerate gradually to maintain a steady flow of fuel to the engine. Quick starts use excess gasoline that isn't needed. Braking too quickly can also cause unnecessary gasoline to spill into the engine.