Record Gas Prices Make it Perfect
Time to "Be Car Care Aware"
With gas prices exceeding two dollars a gallon in many parts of the
country, the Car Care Council is offering gas-saving maintenance and
driving tips that really work.
"Millions of dollars worth of gasoline is wasted every day by
motorists, because simple and inexpensive vehicle maintenance is neglected," said
Rich White, executive director of the Car Care Council. "Loose
or missing gas caps, under-inflated tires, worn spark plugs and dirty
air filters all contribute to poor fuel economy."
The Car Care Council offers these fuel-saving tips:
Vehicle gas caps – About
17 percent of the vehicles on the roads have gas caps that are either
damaged, loose or are missing altogether, causing 147 million gallons
of gas to vaporize every year.
Under inflated tires – When tires aren’t inflated properly
it’s like driving with the parking brake on and can cost a mile
or two per gallon.
Worn spark plugs – A vehicle can have either four, six or eight
spark plugs, which fire as many as 3 million times every 1,000 miles,
resulting in a lot of heat and electrical and chemical erosion. A dirty
spark plug causes misfiring, which wastes fuel. Spark plugs need to
be replaced regularly.
Dirty air filters – An air filter that is clogged with dirt,
dust and bugs chokes off the air and creates a “rich” mixture – too
much gas being burned for the amount of air, which wastes gas and causes
the engine to lose power. Replacing a clogged air filter can improve
gas mileage by as much as 10 percent, saving about 15 cents a gallon.
Fuel-saving driving tips include:
Don’t be an aggressive driver – Aggressive
driving can lower gas mileage by as much as 33 percent on the highway
and 5 percent on city streets, which results in 7 to 49 cents per
Avoid excessive idling – Sitting idle gets zero miles per gallon.
Letting the vehicle warm up for one to two minutes is sufficient.
Observe the speed limit – Gas mileage decreases rapidly at speeds
above 60 mph. Each mph driven over 60 will result in an additional
10 cents per gallon. To maintain a constant speed on the highway, cruise
control is recommended.
Some of the above statistics were gathered from a U.S. Department of
Energy Web site,www.fueleconomy.gov.