With gas prices going up and the threat of shortages on the rise, Milex Complete Auto Care has some tricks of the trade to conserve gas and save money at the pump ahead of the summer travel season.
The ransomware attack that crippled the Colonial Pipeline in May led to increased demand for gas and higher prices for customers. News of the shutdown sparked fear of a gas shortage, resulting in long lines at stations across the Southeast. In states served by the Colonial Pipeline, including Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia, demand was up by a collective 40.1 percent, CNN reported. In states where the gasoline supply was strained due to the pipeline shutdown, prices jumped as much as 21 cents in a matter of days.
Combine high fuel prices and more travel in the coming weeks and many people will be looking to ways to save money when they hit the road. A recent report from AAA Travel projected Memorial Day travel to increase by 60 percent from last year. The same report also revealed motorists will be met with the most expensive gas prices since 2014, AAA revealed.
Here are some suggestions from our professionals at Milex Complete Auto Care on how car owners can conserve gas as they gear up for summer road trips.
Regular Maintenance is Key. Americans regularly delay car maintenance due to busy schedules and work responsibilities. Nearly 8 percent of Americans delay car maintenance, according to research from IMR Inc., an automotive market research firm. Yet, regular maintenance is proven to improve your car’s fuel efficiency and performance. Something as small as a misfiring spark plug can impact gas mileage, according to State Farm. Staying on top of maintenance will save you money at the pump.
Pump it Up. Under-inflated tires reduce fuel economy and are dangerous as well. Tires low on air also degrade handling and braking, wear more rapidly, and can overheat and blow. Check manufacturers' recommendations and make sure tires are inflated to the maximum PSI.
Avoid Idling. Idling uses a surprising amount of fuel — more than restarting the engine. If you need to wait in a parked vehicle for more than a minute or two, switch off the engine and only start up again when you're ready to continue driving.
Drive Safely and at Moderate Speeds. Gas mileage often rapidly decreases at speeds over 50 mph due to aerodynamic drag. To save gas, stay at or under the speed limit, and drive at a consistent rate of speed. Use cruise control on long trips. Avoid jackrabbit starts, hard acceleration, sudden braking, and speeding around corners, as these actions increase fuel consumption.
Travel Light and Check Light. Added weight in the car creates a drag on the engine and consumes extra gas. Remove unnecessary items from the trunk and back of the vehicle. Take your car to a repair shop as soon as possible if the “Check Engine” light comes on. This indicates a problem that is causing excessive emissions and likely reducing fuel economy.
Travel Efficiently. Warm engines run more efficiently than cold ones. Combining short errands into one trip is a good way to save gas as well as time. Whenever possible, travel outside of high-traffic times of the day. In the short term, consider ridesharing or carpooling to split gas costs among multiple passengers.
The experts at Milex Complete Auto Care are here to help you save money on gas this summer. To find our location in your area, visit milexcompleteautocare.com.