Are high gas prices still weighing you down? Take advantage of these gas saving tips from AAA to help improve your overall fuel efficiency! Because practicing good driving and maintenance habits now will help save you money at the pump in the long run.
1. Track gas prices nationwide with GasPrices.AAA.com, and download the AAA Mobile App to see your local gas station prices. These tools will alert you when gas prices rise and fall and help you find the best deal in your area.
2. Carpool with friends and family to save money. Your passengers will make your trip livelier, less mundane, and by riding together you’ll reduce traffic congestion.
3. Combine all of your errands into a single trip, instead of several short trips. Starting from a cold start for each trip can use twice the amount of fuel than a longer, multi-errand trip. Driving with a warmed-up engine is significantly more fuel efficient, and less costly at the gas pump.
4. Choose a different route if the road is proven to be shorter, straighter and less dangerous. The more curves, corners and lane jumps you encounter, the more gas you will use.
5. Track your mileage daily, not just on a tank-to-tank basis. Knowing your mileage in real-time and comparing it day-to-day can help you develop better gas-saving driving habits.
6. Don’t fill up at gas stations near major highways if you can help it. These stations generally charge more due to high overhead costs. If filling up at a highway exit is unavoidable, try stations near state border lines. They tend to price less aggressively.
7. Use your AAA discount to save at least 5¢/gallon at the pump with Shell Fuel Rewards®. You save 30¢/gallon on your first fill-up!
8. Avoid overfilling your gas tank. This can cause spillage and wasted fuel. Also, don’t continue to fill up after you hear the first “click” from the fuel nozzle, and double-check that the gas cap clicked three times after closing. Poorly sealed gas caps will let fuel vaporize.
9. When properly maintained and inflated, your tires can improve your gas mileage by more than 3% per tire. You should check your tire pressure at least once a month, ensuring that it matches what’s listed in your owner’s manual and on the placard inside your car door, to preserve fuel efficiency.
10. Get rid of any extra weight inside your car or trunk—tires, child seats, etc. That excess weight will negatively impact your mileage, especially when you drive up hills.
11. Slow down! Optimal fuel economy speeds may vary by vehicle, but gas mileage usually declines sharply once you hit over 60 mph.
12. Drive at a constant speed when possible and avoid tailgating. Both acceleration and deceleration waste fuel, and the driver in front of you could be unpredictable and force you to lay on the brakes.
13. Use your cruise control when you can. Your car’s cruise control system is more precise when making speed adjustments and will save you fuel.
14. Don’t drive on the highway—or at highway speeds—with your windows down. Open windows cause aerodynamic drag, which affects your gas mileage.
15. Practice rolling when you’re caught in a big traffic jam. Constantly speeding up and slowing down may be your gut reaction, but it’s wasteful. It takes much more fuel to get your car moving than it does to keep it moving. So, try to keep your speed constant if you can, even if that means leaving a big gap between your car and the car in front of you and leisurely rolling along.
16. Try to park in the shade to give your AC a break, and turn it off five minutes before you reach your destination. Running the AC in your car on the maximum level can reduce your mpg by 5% to 25%.
17. Turn off your engine when your car is just sitting, idle. Idling burns 1 gallon of gas per hour and will earn you zero mpg. You’ll save on fuel and help the environment by not releasing any more emissions from your car than absolutely necessary.
18. Keep your car clean and get it waxed. This will help reduce aerodynamic drag.
19. Purchase a vehicle with better gas mileage if you can afford it. The difference between a car that averages 20 mpg versus one that averages 40 mpg is monumental. Your wallet will thank you later.
20. Complete routine maintenance, repairs and inspections to keep your car in good driving condition. It’s no secret that the healthier your car is, the better gas mileage you’ll get. Check your owner’s manual for recommended maintenance intervals and be sure to inspect your suspension and chassis parts for any misalignments. Bent wheels, axles, bad shocks and broken springs will create engine drag, which is just as dangerous as it is bad for fuel efficiency.
If you think your vehicle needs maintenance, visit AAA.com/Repair to search for a AAA Car Care Plus or Approved Auto Repair location near you. AAA members receive 10% off labor and get special deals year-round!
Not a member yet? Review the benefits of joining AAA today!