Weekly Feature

2011-03-03 / Business

NYSERDA offers money-saving tips

With the price of gasoline rising throughout the state, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has developed a guide to help motorists stretch their gasoline dollars.

To save money at the pump, NYSERDA recommends the following fuel saving tips:

Properly inflate your tires. You can improve your gas mileage by approximately 3 percent by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure. Under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by 0.4 percent for every pound-per-square-inch drop in pressure.

Change your air filter. Replacing a clogged air filter can improve your car’s gas mileage by as much as 10 percent. A low restriction air filter can add an additional 10 percent to fuel economy. Not only will replacing a dirty air filter save gas, it also will help to protect your engine.

Change your oil using manufacturer recommendations. Gas mileage can improve 1 to 2 percent by using a manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil. Using the wrong grade of motor oil can decrease your gas mileage 1 to 2 percent. Also, look for motor oil that says “Energy Conserving” to be sure it contains friction-reducing additives that can lower gas mileage.

Observe the speed limit. Gas mileage decreases rapidly at speeds above 60 mph. For every 5 mph above 60, drivers will pay an additional 30 cents per gallon of gasoline.

Drive sensibly. Aggressive driving wastes gas. It also can lower your gas mileage by 33 percent at highway speeds and 5 percent on local roads.

Use cruise control where possible. Cruise control helps you save gas by maintaining a constant speed on the highway.

Change your driving habits. If you own more than one vehicle, drive the one that gets the best gas mileage. Try to avoid driving during peak rush hours to minimize engine idling and fuel loss.

Combine trips. Stop by the store on your way home rather than making a special trip. Combining travel can save time, fuel and money.

Car pool. Sharing a ride to and from work saves you and your co-worker’s gas, money and wear and tear on your vehicle.

For more information on these and other fuel saving tips, visit www.NYSERDA.org.

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