Posted: April 19, 2011

Photo credit: Open Travel Info

I growl every time I have to get gas lately. It’s creeping back up to $4 per gallon again. That’s two gallons of milk (or one if you live in Florida – I can’t believe milk is sooo expensive there!).

I was searching for ways to save money on gas, and here’s my favorites. My first 10 gas saving tips are here.

  1. Say no to brand names: They all use the same refineries and pipelines!
  2. Highway travel: exit at a moderately sized city.  Supposedly their gas is cheaper.  Head for the city center.  Two sources told me this is the way to go.
  3. Checking the air in your tires:  tip from my reader Amy: We have a Hyundai Elantra and recently went from Utah to San Diego, I kept telling hubby to do the air in the tires but he didn’t when we first headed on our trip. On our first fill up we calculated we got about 33 miles to the gallon…he filled our tires and our mpg jumped! We averaged around 37-38 mpg the rest of the trip and just recently I hit 40 mpg so fill those low tires to help with gas mileage!
  4. Get ride of the junk in the trunk: Less weight is better.  I have a stroller and subwoofers I don’t even use in my trunk – time to take them out!
  5. Scooter: One of my readers got a scooter just for her husband to go back and forth from work, at 56mpg that can save a lot on gas! Make sure that the cost of the scooter doesn’t out weigh the savings.  For $879 you can get a 100 MPG scooter!
  6. Tailgates down – sunroof up: Supposedly having the tailgate of a truck down reduces wind resistance (this was dis-proved by mythbusters though according to some of my readers, so go ahead, leave it up!)   Sunroofs should be up.
  7. Steady does it: Drive steady, no quick starts or fast stops, stay at the same mph as much as possible.
  8. But I love my A/C! Air conditioning can reduce gas by 10-20%.  Roll down the windows if possible.
  9. WHAT? Keep windows closed: Ok so the next tip is that windows open on the highways can reduce gas by 10% because of drag.  So A/C or windows down? ??  Here’s what Open Travel says “I believe that opening your windows at low speeds and using the air conditioner at high speeds gives you better fuel economy.”
  10. Windows down a tiny bit: Keep your windows down just a bit so the air can circulate through your car while you are parked.  This makes sense.  Still wondering about 8 & 9…

Ask CCD Readers: How high do you think gas prices are going to get???

Thanks to Tree and Open Travel Info for some of their suggestions!

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  • Sarah

    The tip about the tailgate down is wrong. Mithbusters proved that you get better gas mileage with the tailgate up because of how the wind makes a cycle in the bed, so the air then flows over the top of it.

  • Jessica Hishman

    Take public transport haha I hate where I live but the MTA does save me money by not having to use gas…though their prices are going up as well

  • Miss Lissy

    I live in Milwaukee near a major highway and I can definitely attest to the fact that gas is more expensive right next to the highway than more in the city. Be careful though, because it’s not always a lot cheaper and you might just waste gas looking for a cheaper station.

  • Diane

    Gas can vary by at least 10 cents in the 25 miles between my home and work. The closer to the city I get the cheaper it usually is. Im guessing because there is more gas stations around so there is more competition. By my house there is only 2 in my town. Luckily Tops Supermarket gives you points for every purchase you make and then you can redeem the points for gas rewards at their gas stations. Like in a certain period if you spend $100 you get 10 cents off a gallon (good for the fill up of one vehicle only). $200 is 20 cents of and so on and so on. Usually you have over a month to accumulate points and since they they are super close to our house ( well within walking distance) we end up shopping there A LOT!

  • Angela S.

    We are really cutting back on our trips, and combining errands up during the week. Really makes a difference.

  • sarah

    I bet gas will get higher as long as there is unrest in the Middle East.

  • rebecca shockley

    This is an awesome subject and tips, but I have one more for you to add, research if you need first, but it’s true. I was watching Fox or CNN and they had some kind of fuel expert on giving tips on when you pump your gas, here it goes, DON”T click that lever and walk away or get back in your vehicle, your suppose to hand hold the pump the entire time, you get way more gas for your money. I know, these 50.00 every 4 days or so, I get hand cramps from holding the pump that long, but I drive a mini van with 5 kids and I need that extra gas. Great topic.

  • Rebecca Shockley

    I have founds some more tips on saving gas and I would like to share, Drafting, no not like the movie. “Every car has a certain amount of drag (or wind resistance). This drag, the rolling resistance of your tires (see below under maintenance) and the friction in your engine are the three main causes of reduced efficiency. A car moving through the air causes the air to split around the car and turbulence behind the car. If you drive your car into another cars slipstream, both cars will save fuel (less turbulence). The following car saves the most gasoline.
    Now remember, I am not advocating to tailgate. However, you can try to find a large truck (more turbulence and a longer slipstream tail) and slip in there.” This from Open Travel Info, Great tips.

    Here’s another one, “Believe it or not, but opening your windows will increase the turbulences and eventually cost you fuel. If you can, use only the ventilation system of your car. I cannot really gauge this against using the air conditioner. I believe that opening your windows at low speeds and using the air conditioner at high speeds gives you better fuel economy.” WOW, these are great! This from Open Travel Info

  • Maurine

    And car pool with a friend when possible!

  • SamanthaS

    Use to see where has cheaper gas. Look into savings with your grocery store. It used to be Sams Club or Costco were cheaper but not since Smiths oped their station. I gas up at Smiths last time I saved .80 per gallon!

  • Sabrina Davis

    Along with the other tips my sister sent me was: Fill up in the morning ( it has to do with fumes and compression and heat in the underground tank) plus the gas hasn’t expanded yet , for the same reason a fuller gas tank will yeild you better mpg than an empty one (it suggested using your half mark like being in the red), and last if the gas station has a truck there filling the underground tanks than leave and come back later or go somewhere else (something to do with stirring up the gas and you get more fumes and less mpg). Hope this helps someone.

  • Karen Dobbs

    Also, Schnuck’s here in the Rockford, IL area struck up a loyalty program with participating Mobil gas stations. Every $100 you spend at Schnuck’s you get $0.10 off per gallon up to 25 gallons. It accumulates every time you use your loyalty card. Best part to me: It takes the subtotal BEFORE coupons and applies it like that as long as you have it scanned before the coupons! So I had a subtotal of 40 something and only spent about 11, but it counted the 40 toward my level. I’m up to $0.40 off per gallon. The “points” expire 3 months after shop date, so I am accumulating as much as I can until Sept 22 when my first trip expires, then I will use that sucker at Mobil!

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