Archive for the ‘save gas’ Tag

Surprise: Using car’s air conditioning saves gas

Want to save fuel on those long summer highway drives? Don’t open the window. Crank up the air conditioning.

That’s just one of the useful — and frequently surprising — tips available from , the go-to web site for information on fuel economy.

While running the AC does increase fuel consumption, it’s more efficient than driving with the windows open at highway speeds. The open windows increase the car’s aerodynamic drag, and that makes the engine work harder, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Other EPA-approved fuel-savers

– Park in the shade so your car doesn’t get as hot.

– Leave the windows open when you first start driving to clear hot air out of the cabin.

– If you’ve got a plug-in hybrid, pre-cool the car while it’s still plugged in. That uses power from the electric grid, not your car’s engine.

While air conditioning uses energy, drivers are more likely to be safe and focused on the road when they’re comfortable. Don’t stress yourself out by driving in a sweltering hot car.

If you want to know how much more money you spend when you speed up, the website can calculate that, too.

Driving a 2015 four-cylinder Toyota Camry at 80 miles per hour will cost $1.49 more per 100 miles than 70 mph for instance.

Read more at:


20 ways to save gas this summer

For every penny that gas prices go up, Americans spend $1.25 billion more per year at the pump. No one wants to waste that kind of money. So unless you’re hauling the whole ball team, [1] IT’S TIME TO UNLOAD THE OLD SUBURBAN. And you, Honda Element fella, stop smirking: You’re getting only 20 mpg — and driving something even less aerodynamic.

If you’re driving something that gets reasonable fuel economy, drive it reasonably. When entering a highway, [2] ACCELERATE TO 60 MPH AT ABOUT DOUBLE YOUR CAR’S TOP 0-TO-60 TIME. As Popular Mechanics proved in a battery of tests, this puts the car in its more efficient top gear quicker than the smug hyper-miler crawling up to speed… in the left lane.

[3] COAST — IN GEAR. The same tests showed that rolling in neutral requires a trickle of gas to keep the engine running but in-gear coasting does not — and that if you anticipate traffic lights and [4] DON’T COME TO A COMPLETE STOP, you can boost mpg by as much as 50 percent.

A warm engine is more efficient, so string errands together by [5] DRIVING TO THE FARTHEST DESTINATION FIRST, which will get the block heated up, then work your way home.

When it’s warm out, keep cool by opening the windows, enjoying the breeze, and [6] TURNING OFF THE GAS-DRAINING A/C. At highway speeds, however, our tests showed windows-down driving creates drag. So at 60 mph or faster, roll up the windows and [7] PUT ON THE A/C.

Notice to hoarders: You don’t need to lug around a case of oil, a bag of sand, or that box of antique tools you got at the garage sale, right? So [8] EMPTY THE TRUNK — less weight, better mileage. Pickup drivers, [9] REMOVE THE 300-POUND TOOLBOX FROM THE BED and, while you’re at it, [10] CLOSE THE TAILGATE to create a drag-reducing air bubble. MythBusters increased the overall range of a full tank by 30 miles using this technique; the show also proved that [11] A RIGHT-TURN ONLY ROUTE increases fuel economy by 3 percent, because idling (at stoplights, for instance) wastes fuel. For that same reason, [12] AVOID TRAFFIC PINCH POINTS. Driving at speed is more fuel efficient than creeping along in low gear. And if you’re not regularly carrying a bike or a kayak on that roof rack, reduce drag by [13] SLIDING OFF THE CROSSBARS or at least [14] SLIDING THE CROSSBARS ALL THE WAY BACK (making a single wing).

At the pump [15] AVOID GAS RATED E15; the “E” is for ethanol, which has about 30 percent less energy than gasoline and kills mpg. (Ethanol-free gas is rare today; you’ll probably have to settle for E10.) While at the filling station, [16] INFLATE YOUR TIRES PROPERLY and check them for uneven wear, which works against you. Stickier, wider performance tires also increase road friction and sap mileage. So [17] STEER CLEAR OF TIRES MEANT FOR RACE CARS, and [18] SWITCH TO ECO-FOCUSED TIRES, which reduce rolling resistance. Also, [19] GET A TUNEUP; a smooth-running engine is more efficient.

Finally, don’t overlook the obvious: Nothing saves gas like not driving at all. [20] RIDE YOUR BICYCLE to fetch that quart of milk, especially if the store is just a mile or so away.

Content provided by Popular Mechanics.

As read on: