Saving money on gas is always a good thing. What some people don’t realize is that there are things you can do to curb gas consumption and save yourself money. Here are some tips that can keep your hard-earned dollar in your pocket.
You might not automatically recognize it, but tire pressure means a lot to mileage. Having low tire pressure forces your engine to work harder because the car’s rolling resistance increases. Find the car’s correct tire pressure on the labeling in the driver’s side door or the owner’s manual. Check it frequently and inflate if necessary. According to the EPA, having the correct tire pressure can improve gas mileage by as much as 3 percent.
A spark plug must fire correctly to ignite the air/fuel mixture in the engine combustion chamber. According to the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), a misfiring spark plug can reduce fuel efficiency as much as 30 percent. Some spark plugs last for 100,000 miles, but some need to be replaced before that mark. During the last 20 percent of a spark plug’s life, misfiring happens more often. Check the owner’s manual to see how often the vehicle’s spark plugs need to be changed. It can help with a better running engine, which leads to better fuel efficiency.
On older vehicles, it is important to replace a clogged air filter because it can improve both fuel economy and acceleration. Newer models with computers and air flow sensors allow for better air/fuel mix, so you reach maximum fuel economy. However, checking the air filter and switching out a dirty filter for a clean one will help engine performance overall because a dirty filter means less air gets to the engine with hard acceleration, and thus, the car is slower to speed up.
Most car owners know that having regular oil changes helps with a car’s performance. Those oil changes also impact fuel efficiency. Over time, oil can become dirty and heavy. It works less effectively. This kind of oil makes the engine work harder because oil is vital in maintaining a vehicle’s viscosity. Without proper viscosity, the engine runs hotter. This has a negative impact on gas mileage. Depending on how you drive, an oil change is needed every three months or 3,000 miles.
Check engine light
When the check engine light goes on, it typically means that one (or more) of the car’s systems are not working properly. If that is the case, it can impact fuel economy. When the light goes on, take the time to check out the problem. It could save more money than you may think.