It’s no secret that gas prices aren’t going to stay low forever, especially during this pandemic. We are seeing gas prices going higher despite drivers drive less during this “stay at home” provincial order in Ontario. It’s better to prepare for this inevitable rise in the cost of a litres of gas than to be caught off guard by it. The following is a list we compile together for you consist of practical ways to save money on gas, ranging from simple things you can do on a day-to-day basis to more drastic actions you can take if your financial situation is dire.
Gas Saving Tip #1: Car Weight
Weight is the enemy of fuel economy.
Some drivers carry a bunch of unnecessary weight, and I’m not talking about what you see in the mirror.
Guys – sports equipment, tools. Ladies – well, just take a look around the passenger compartment and trunk.
All extra weight wastes fuel.
To get better fuel economy, lose the junk and save some cash at pumps. And you really only need one of those spare tires.
Gas Saving Tip #2: Gas Cap
This fuel saving tip for drivers is so simple you won’t believe it. It has to do with your fuel cap.
The first thing is to make sure it’s screwed on tight. If it’s loose, fuel vapor will be constantly leaking out, reducing fuel economy.
This could cause the check engine light to come on as well.
A worn fuel cap can have the same effect. If you constantly smell fuel when you walk by your tank, you might need a new fuel cap.
So, twist your cap until it clicks three times – that means it’s on tight. Have your service advisor inspect the cap to see if it needs to be replaced.
Gas Saving Tip #3: Alignment
Imagine you’re up in the arctic on a dog sled. Your dog team is pulling straight and true.
You can cover a lot of ground fast. Now imagine what would happen if one or two of the dogs wanted to go their own way and were pulling off to the side. That would slow you down.
You would have to work harder to keep the sled going where you want it. The dogs are all working as hard as before, but you’re covering less ground for the same effort. You’re wasting kibble.
The same is true of your vehicle when the wheels are out of alignment.
That wheel that’s pulling to the side is dragging down the rest of the car – so you push a little harder on the pedal to keep up your speed on Kitchener roads. You’re wasting fuel.
So have your wheel alignment checked at least once a year. This will help save you money on gas and improve fuel efficiency.
Get it checked right away if you feel the car pulling to one side. Sometimes we bump a curb or hit a pothole and knock our wheels out of alignment. An accident can take the wheels out of alignment as well.
Gas Saving Tip #4: Dirty Oil
Drivers who are a quart low, don’t have enough oil to lubricate their engine properly. The extra friction causes drag that reduces fuel economy.
Same goes for dirty oil. It doesn’t reduce friction properly.
The result is you get to watch those numbers at your fuel pump rolling higher and higher. Getting oil change service on time is the key to saving gas in the long run.
The transmission also needs the proper amount of clean fluid to do its work.
When it’s in need of transmission service, the transmission drags your fuel economy down.
So keep it clean and give yourself a fighting chance. Improve fuel economy and save mony on gas in the long term.
Gas Saving Tip #5: Fuel System Cleaning
A lot of fuel is wasted by drivers in dirty fuel delivery systems. Let’s start at the tank. The fuel tank gathers of dirt, rust and sediment over the years of driving around. That’s why there’s a fuel filter to clean the fuel after it leaves the tank.
A dirty filter will rob the engine of the clean fuel it needs to run efficiently.
The fuel intake components get coated with gum and varnish over time. This results in fuel being delivered inefficiently and some of that gunk getting into the engine.
A fuel system service will leave your intake as clean as a whistle.
The big fuel thief is dirty fuel injectors. They deliver fuel to the engine at a specified pressure and in a particular spray pattern. When they’re clogged, the fuel doesn’t get atomized the way it’s supposed to and doesn’t get burned as efficiently. Definitely get it checked so you can maintain your fuel economy, save money on gas.
Gas Saving Tip #6: Tire Pressure
Under-inflated tires waste fuel. Think how hard it is to walk in sand, you just have to work harder because of the resistance.
When your tires don’t have enough air in them, their rolling resistance is dramatically increased and it simply takes more fuel to get from one destination to the other.
Drivers should always check their tire pressure when they fill up with fuel. If they’re low even just a little bit bring them up to proper pressure. There’s a sticker on the inside of the driver’s door that gives the car maker’s recommended tire pressure.
And don’t rely on your tire pressure monitoring system to alert you to when you need more air.
The TPMS system is set to warn you when pressure drops twenty percent below recommendations. That’s severely under inflated and you needed more air a long time ago.
And if you have a slow leak get it fixed right away. We can get that tire change done quickly at Techline Motors.
Tire pressure have huge impact on your gas mileage, make sure they are checked frequently to save money on gas.
Gas Saving Tip #7: Tune Up
Have you ever gone to listen to an orchestra? The musicians take the stage early and tune their instruments. Each individual instrument must be in tune, but the critical thing is for the entire orchestra to be in tune with each other. That’s why they tune up together.
Now this is no surprise, I’m going to relate the orchestra to your car. Your vehicle engine has many component systems that each need to be working properly. And the components need to be working in sync, all timed up together in order for the engine to work efficiently.
At Techline Motors, we call this, ta da, a tune-up. When an orchestra’s out of tune you get a bad concert. When your vehicle’s out of tune you get bad performance and bad fuel economy.
So check your owner’s manual for your recommended tune-up schedule. Or ask your Techline Motors service advisor in Kitchener what he thinks. Just be careful not to say you want to make beautiful music together – that kinda makes us uncomfortable.
Gas Saving Tip #8: Check Engine Light
How long have you been enjoying the romantic glow of your check engine light while driving around? Hey, it’s not there to create ambiance, it’s a warning that something’s wrong. When your check engine light comes on get it checked at Techline Motors.
Many conditions that cause the check engine light to come on affect fuel economy. Some very dramatically.
Drivers should always make sure to tighten the fuel cap until it clicks. A loose fuel cap can cause a false sensor reading that’ll make the check engine light come on.
If your date’s eyes are smoldering in the reflected glow of the check engine light, try to think of all the money you’ll save at the pumps by getting it fixed.
During this pandemic, although we have drastically reduce usage of our cars for some of us. As the city is slowly getting back to normal, it’s important to get your vehicle checked, and properly maintained so it’s ready back on the road.
If your vehicle is not properly maintained, not only it is not safe to drive it on the road, but your fuel economy might suffer as well. If you want to save money on gas, then make sure you check your tires, maintain your engine, get your oil, tranmission, wheel alignment checked, and make sure you don’t carry to much weight in your trunk!