It’s impossible to know when fuel prices are going to go up or down. Often, the rationale behind the fluctuation is murky; other times it makes perfect sense. One thing is for certain: the situation often leaves consumers feeling a bit powerless. But there are some easy and creative ways you can save money at the pump and get better fuel economy in general.
- Gas price apps are super handy ways to get ahead of rising or falling gas prices. GasBuddy is a popular one and is free to download, but there are others too. It’s pretty simple — you’ll get a notification when prices are changing, so you know when it’s best to fill up.
- As the weather warms up, use your AC as minimally as possible. Keeping the cold air blasting during a drive can significantly decrease your miles per gallon. Instead, use the AC intermittently as needed and try to keep the temperature as warm as you find tolerable.
- General maintenance on your car can also increase fuel efficiency. Make sure your tires have the recommended amount of pressure, get your engine checked regularly, etc. Oil and filter changes can also make a difference.
- Your driving habits directly impact your fuel economy, too. Accelerating and braking rapidly both are sure ways to burn through the gas fast. Speeding decreases your mpg, too, so keep an eye on those speed limits and remember, the faster you go the quicker you’ll need fuel.
- Last, is your car aerodynamic? Think about anything that is creating additional drag, as air flows over and around the car. Roof racks are common offenders, because people forget they’re there. But tailgates and open windows change the air flow and thus reduce the efficiency. Remove extra cargo and weight that is in the car too, to reduce drag over time.