With the rise in fuel costs, it’s no wonder you’re looking for ways to save money on gas!
Not only does improving your gas mileage help your wallet, but it also helps the environment as well by releasing fewer emissions.
Many of us drive regularly, so ditching our vehicles isn’t an option.
However, there are ways you can improve your gas mileage and lower your driving costs simply by changing your driving habits and considering the mechanical components of your vehicle.
Here are some ways that you can drive more efficiently and save some money when it comes to fuel costs:
How to Improve Gas Mileage With Your Driving Habits
First of all, let’s take a look at how you can improve your gas mileage by considering your driving habits:
- Go easy on the pedal! Poor driving habits such as speeding, braking, and rapid acceleration can increase your vehicle’s fuel consumption.
- Slow down and follow the speed limit. You lose fuel efficiency for every eight kilometers (five miles) you drive over 80 km per hour (50 mph).
- Turn off your car if you expect to wait longer than two minutes. An idling vehicle can burn as much as one gallon of fuel per hour!
- Fill your tank during cooler times of the day, such as the early morning or late evening. Fuel is dispensed by volume, so if you fill your tank while it is cooler outside, the fuel will be denser, and you’ll get more bang for your buck.
How to Improve Gas Mileage Mechanically
Check Your Tire Pressure
Underinflated tires can negatively impact your vehicle’s gas mileage and cost you more fuel.
Tires can lose around 2 pounds per square (psi) inch every month, and for every tire that is underinflated by 10 psi, your fuel efficiency drops by 3%.
So, if all four tires are under 10 psi, you’re looking at an additional cost of 31 cents per gallon!
Replace the Spark Plugs
Having bad spark plugs can decrease your car’s gas mileage by up to 30% and can cost you around 94 cents more per gallon of fuel!
If you find your vehicle’s fuel mileage suddenly drops, have a mechanic take a look at your spark plugs to ensure that they are not misfiring.
Check Your Alignment
When your car’s tires are misaligned, they drag along the pavement instead of rolling freely. This can reduce fuel efficiency and quickly wear out your tires.
You’ll know your tires are imbalanced if you feel a vibration in your steering wheel. Every time you have your tires changed, or whenever you feel this vibration, it’s important to have them balanced.
Use Your Cruise Control
Use your vehicle’s cruise control to maintain your speed whenever it is safe and appropriate. This can improve your fuel economy by up to 14%!
How to Improve Gas Mileage on an Old Car
Use High-Quality Fuel
There are actually benefits to using high-quality fuel – it’s not just a cash grab!
Higher-quality gasoline can reduce the number of explosions in the combustion chamber and improve your fuel economy.
It also burns slower and cleaner and prevents excessive carbon buildup in the engine and intake valves.
Replace the Gas Cap
Sometimes improving the gas mileage of your older vehicle is as easy as replacing the gas cap!
The gas cap prevents dirt and debris from contaminating the fuel supply and prevents your vehicle’s fuel from evaporating too quickly.
You should replace the gas cap on your older vehicle every two years to ensure a tight seal and to ensure your car isn’t losing fuel due to evaporating.
Routine and Regular Maintenance
While every vehicle, no matter its age, should be regularly maintained, this is particularly important for older vehicles.
Regular maintenance will prolong the lifespan of your car and ensure that it’s using the optimal mixture of fuel and air for proper operation. This also helps the engine burn fuel more efficiently.
Upgrade Vehicle Parts
In order to maintain fuel efficiency when it comes to your older vehicle, it may be necessary to upgrade and replace certain components of your car.
For example, lowering your vehicle’s profile with air-ride suspensions can improve air displacement and improve gas mileage.
You can also upgrade your tires to ones that reduce rolling resistance. This puts less strain on the engine and, in turn, burns less fuel.
Car Improvements That Affect Gas Mileage
High-Flow Cold Air Intake System
A cold air intake system is an inexpensive performance modifier that increases airflow to your engine. Cooler air creates a better oxygen flow and more power when your vehicle’s throttle is fully open.
It also improves your car’s gas mileage because it alters the air-to-gas ratio of your engine, so your vehicle requires less fuel to operate.
Cat-Back Exhaust System
A cat-back exhaust system features larger pipes that run from the catalytic converter to the mufflers.
This creates a system that more efficiently removes more exhaust gas and improves gas mileage for your vehicle.
Performance Suspension Kits
Because lighter vehicles consume less fuel, removing weight from your current vehicle makes sense to improve gas mileage!
You can do this by installing a performance suspension kit with lighter components so that your engine doesn’t have to use as much power to make your vehicle go.
These kits include lightweight struts, shocks, springs, and sway bars designed for speed and performance.
Performance Chip or Tuner
Your vehicle has an electronic control unit (ECU) that controls ignition timing and dictates the fuel mixture necessary for your engine to work.
You can customize the output and alter the settings of this unit by adding a performance tuner or chip. Doing so will allow you to set a fuel mixture balance that will reduce your vehicle’s gas consumption.
However, this is not a modification for beginners! We recommend you have an experienced and licensed service technician perform this upgrade for you.
Ready to Upgrade Your Vehicle and Downgrade Your Fuel Prices?
Here at Park Muffler, we understand that many drivers operate on a budget and are looking for affordable ways to cut down on gas costs.
Let our service team help! From regular maintenance to performance upgrades, we can help you lower your driving costs and take the strain off your wallet.
Contact us today to book your next service appointment!