As gas prices inch to $4.00/gallon in the Northeast and $5.00/gallon in other parts of the country (I’m looking at you California), there’s never been a better time to conserve fuel. And since every gallon of gas burned generates the carbon equivalent of a 20-pound bag of charcoal briquettes, conserving fuel not only helps your wallet but also saves the environment. (Didn’t you know? Green is the new black? Please don’t punch me.)
So after perusing the internet, I’ve found some handy little tips for those people who find the commute to work taking a toll on their budget. And because I’m such a nice person, I’m going to pass them on to you.
- Be a careful (read: good) driver – Don’t slam on the brakes or gun the gas pedal and try to avoid speeding. I know, I know. You’re late – aren’t we all? But every 5 mph you go above 60 mph is the equivalent to paying an additional $0.10 per gallon. True story. So those of us who are perpetually late for our lives and speeding to make up for lost time – it may be costing us.
- Keep your engine tuned – Keeping your car in good shape is a good general rule of thumb anyway, it will reduce your matainence cost overall if you change your oil regularly and make sure your engine is running properly. But it can also improve your gas mileage by an average of 4% – so go and schedule that appointment at your local Speed-ee Quick Lube Car Repair.
- Buy cheaper gas – I know, I know. What a genius idea – revolutionary, really. But gas prices can vary several cents by region and make a difference in the overall price to fill up your tank. In the town I used to reside, gas was always about $0.08 cheaper than near our offices. Gas Buddy can help you find the cheapest place in your area for regular unleaded. (If you need super deluxe gas, you’re on your own.)
- Drive less – What’s that? I should get the Nobel Peace Prize for brilliant, innovative ways to save on gas? You’re too kind. But truthfully, we all rely on our cars to take us everywhere and it’s rare that we consider our other options for transportation, no matter how high gas prices become. When I lived in Washington, DC it was not only more cost efficient but also entirely less stressful to take the metro into the city rather than wasting precious gas sitting in traffic on the Capital Beltway. Perhaps you don’t have a great public transportation system in your area (cough, Rhode Island) – but there’s always carpooling to work with people making the same trip and splitting gas costs.
Perhaps this list won’t make a huge difference on your overall fuel bill the next time you stop at the pumps – but desperate times call for desperate measures people. And you know, there’s always those things hanging below your waist called legs. I hear those things are pretty handy for transportation.
Happy Memorial Day weekend!
Posted by: Ashley