Don't let all the extra driving during the holiday season drain your wallet - there are many ways to put an immediate dent in your gas bill.
Nothing will save you more money at the station than a fuel-efficient car. Large, heavy vehicles can burn up to three times as much fuel as small cars. So if it's time for a trade in, seriously consider purchasing a car that was built to get good gas mileage.
The following tips will speed up your savings even further.
- Keep your tires filled with the right amount of air. You can find this information in your vehicle owner’s manual.
- Keep your clutch adjusted.
- Use the manufacturer’s suggested engine oil and maintain its recommended level and cleanliness.
- Map your route with the flattest terrain and fewest stops – there are smartphone apps to help you plan.
- Use your air conditioner sparingly.
- Remove unused bike and luggage racks to make your car more aerodynamic.
- Keep the windows closed when traveling at high speeds.
- Leave for work earlier or later to avoid traffic jams and stop-and-go traffic.
- Remove heavy objects from the car – plan for a “haul away junk day” to load everything in your car.
- Bike, walk, or use public transportation whenever possible.
- When appropriate, turn the car off rather than letting it idle.
- Don't warm up newer model cars - most don't need it.
- Avoid traveling at fast speeds in low gears – this wastes gas and is bad for your engine.
- Drive the speed limit.
- Use cruise control on the open road, when safe.
- Accelerate slowly when leaving the stoplight.
- Buy gas with the lowest octane rating (check the owner’s manual).
- Don't rev your engine.
- Arrange for carpools to share the cost of gas.
- Avoid routes where construction work is being done, since the stop-and-go will use up a lot of gas.
- Use your navigation system (if available) to avoid getting lost and wasting gas.
- Combine errands into one trip when it makes sense.
- Use websites and mobile applications that list gas stations with the lowest prices.
- Drive conservatively and leave a buffer between you and the cars in front of you.
- Don’t “top off” at the gas pump – it’s bad for the environment and your vehicle!
- Don’t drive far out of your way to save a few pennies at another gas station. There are smartphone apps that offer you the best gas prices for the area of town you are in.
- Walk into restaurants instead of using the drive-through.
- Avoid circling the parking lot to find a space that is just a little bit closer.
- If your company has flexible benefits, ask your employer if they will let you work from home a few days per month.
As your credit union, we can to take the time to make sure that you are getting the most from your membership. Stop by a branch
, or contact us
to make an appointment to meet with us to identify ways that you can save all year long.
Content in this article was provided by BALANCE