Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Road TripsTravel InterestTrip Planning

5 Tips to Save Gas for Memorial Day Weekend or Your Next Road Trip

Memorial Day will usher in the unofficial beginning of the summer season this weekend. The American Automobile Association (AAA) estimates that 39.2 million people are planning to travel 50 miles or more from their homes to mark the occasion. That is an 8.3% increase over 2021, bringing travel volume closely in line with what it was in 2017. Of that 39.2 million people, 34.9 million of them are expected to take to the roads. With gas prices surging around the world and currently averaging $4.60 a gallon in the US; we thought we’d give you some tips on how to improve your car’s gas mileage in order to get the most out of your travel budget for the holiday weekend or road trip.

Remove Unnecessary Weight From Your Car
Before you even pull out of your garage, driveway, or parking space, you should remove all unnecessary clutter from the trunk and seating area of the car. As little as one hundred pounds can reduce your car’s efficiency so all those beach chairs and umbrellas clogging your trunk have got to go.

Roof racks, cargo boxes, and bike racks are other things to pay attention to because they add wind resistance, in addition to weight, which will impact fuel efficiency.

Perform Routine Car Maintenance
Did you know that underinflated tires can increase your car’s fuel consumption by up to 3%? Check your manual or tire wall for the proper PSI to ensure you are driving at the correct pressure.

Dirty air filters make it harder for your car to draw in air to mix with the fuel. So, make sure they are consistently cleaned to improve fuel consumption by up to 15%!

Bad spark plugs can also decrease your fuel economy by up to 30%. Make sure you have your mechanic check them out to help you save gas.

Consistent oil changes using the ideal motor oil for your vehicle can help you save an estimated $0.05 a gallon which adds up over time. This means finding the thinnest-viscosity motor oil recommended by the car’s manufacturer.

Routine tune-ups are key to ensure that your vehicle is performing at its best and maintaining the best fuel economy.

Fill Your Gas Tank When It’s Cool Outside
Fuel is dispensed and purchased by volume. When it is cooler outside (think early morning or late at night) the gas is more dense, and so, you get more gas for your money! Fueling this way can save you up to $0.08 a gallon depending on how hot it gets where you live.

Plan Your Route
Before heading out, plan your route. Try to eliminate unnecessary turnarounds and backtracking. Set pre-determined rest breaks and fueling stops to eliminate the unnecessary mileage that can accrue when pulling off the highway to find a gas station or rest stop.

Make an effort to try and avoid rush hour and anticipate road work and conditions. The “stopping” and “starting” associated with traffic take their toll on the gas tank. Some of this will, of course, be unavoidable on big travel weekends but with the right planning, some of it can definitely be avoided.

Watch Your Speed
Fuel economy peaks at 50mph and then steadily declines as speed increases. You can save gas by up to 14% by going 5 to 10 miles slower.

Similarly, try to avoid rapid acceleration and hard breaking which can lower fuel efficiency by up to 30% at highway speeds.

Who wants to waste money at the gas pump when there are so many places to see, restaurants to enjoy, and adventures to have? Applying these tips, not only this Memorial Day Weekend, but over time, will help you save gas and some hard-earned cash.

John A. Hernandez

John A. Hernandez is a staff writer for Vacationer and Queer Forty Magazine. He is also a contributor to Bear World Magazine and Gayming Magazine. In his free time he loves to travel and watch as much horror as he can get his hands on. He resides with his husband in New York City.

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