Tips to Keep You From Spending All Spring/Summer at the Pump

Enjoy these 10 Tips from VehicleMD on how to save save fuel, time and money.


Routine preventative maintenance of your vehicle can not only save you in fuel economy, but it can also help you avoid costly repairs. Automotive service centers will most likely catch any problems before they become too costly, even when you just came in for a routine oil change.

Check your tire pressure at least once a month to make sure they are inflated properly. Tires that are not properly inflated can lower your fuel economy. Checking your tire pressure is so simple, quick and easy, yet can save you money in fuel economy—also aiding in safety—so don’t neglect his important procedure!

A dirty air filter restricts the flow of air into the engine—and when your engine needs about 9,000 gallons of air per each gallon of gas used, air restriction is a big deal. Most technicians will show you your air filter while you’re getting your oil changed. Make sure you have it replaced at least once a year—have it replaced sooner if it become clogged and dirty before the year is up.

Cooling system failure is the number one cause of roadside breakdowns and can really put a damper on your summer vacation. Have your coolant checked, topped off and flushed when recommended by your technician. You don’t want your vehicle to overheat when you’re trying to get to the beach!

 Don’t Drive Aggressively
Aggressive drivers use more fuel. By driving moderately, an average savings of 31 percent is possible. Avoiding jackrabbit starts and braking hard can help retain your fuel and potentially save you money. We know you’re in a hurry, but with fuel prices rising it’s not worth the unnecessary fuel intake. Try getting up earlier (easier said than done), and with easy braking and moderate acceleration you can avoid being the aggressive driver and save on fuel.

Drive the speed limit
I like to follow the “five over” rule. However, by driving the speed limit a substantial amount of fuel could be saved on long trips. Driving at speeds of more than 60 miles per hour will decrease your miles per gallon drastically, and we all know that a potential 12 to 14 percent savings in fuel is nothing to sneeze at—so slow down!

Clean It Out
Carrying around excess items in your car can greatly increase the amount of fuel you burn. Simply, clean out any unnecessary items to prevent burning excess fuel. Do you really need to carry your golf clubs everywhere you go? An extra 100 pounds in your car can reduce your fuel economy by two percent.

Remove Unnecessary Features
Bike racks, ski racks and luggage carriers are all nice accessories, but when not in use they create drag and disrupt airflow. If you don’t need them except for special occasions that are few and far between then get them off your car. It’s not worth paying the money in fuel to cart these “cool” features around.

Let’s Cruise
Cruise control is beneficial when trying to save gas. According to a test performed by, using your cruise control could save you up to 14 percent. If you have this feature, use it when possible.

“Idleness is the Beginning of All Vices”
This proverb certainly rings true in the automotive world. Not only is it annoying, but it decreases fuel economy. recommends that if you are going to be stopped for longer than one minute then turn your car off. Think of the amount of time you spend idling in a fast food drive thru, traffic jam or, if you’re like me, sitting in the car while my significant other goes into a store—of course the car is on, I want to listen to the radio and it’s hot outside!. Avoid excessive idling—in the drive thru, at red lights, in rush hour traffic and while your spouse/friend/sibling has to pick up milk—you could save up to 19 percent in fuel.

Buddy Up
Carpooling with another person will cut the cost of commuting in half.  Even by carpooling once a week, a sizeable difference can be made. So, buddy up and reduce the amount of fuel used.

Find the Quickest Route
I admit, I’ve gotten lost a time or two, and while it’s fun to drive off the beaten path sometimes, it’s not good for fuel economy. Use a GPS to find the shortest route, and stay on that route. Getting lost or taking a longer route simply costs you more money, plus, you’re in a hurry right?

All in One Trip
Not only is it extremely frustrating to have to get back out of the house after a long day of work, it can cost you more in fuel. It’s wise to make a plan to accomplish all your errands in one trip. If you take several short trips from a cold start you will burn more gas than you will if you do all your errands with one trip while the motor is warm.

Changing your driving habits isn’t a simple task, but by incorporating these fuel saving tips you will be spending less time and money at the pump, which in times like these, should be every driver’s goal.