Saving Money at the Pump Right Now!

The good news for Joshua, the youngest Kay Kid – he inherited the ‘Burb!
The bad news for Joshua, he inherited the ‘Burb!

With gas prices rapidly approaching $5/gallon here in sunny southern cali, he may have to park that beast, before he ever gets a chance to drive it.

But there are ways to save at the pump, if you are strategic. Here are my tips:

Plan AAA’s Fuel Cost Calculator helps you plot out the most efficient route. You can also put in the year, make and model of your car and it will compute what you’ll spend on gas.
Prices – Get the app or go to sites such as www.gaspricewatch.com  , www.fuelmeup.com , or www.gasbuddy.com  and find the cheapest price for gas both at home and enroute. Find the app called Gas Buddy or AAA”s Trip’Tik Mobile iPhone.
Pace Your Driving – Jackrabbit starts and constant speeding up and slowing down cost precious gas mileage miles. Instead, pace yourself.  Jackrabbit stops are as bad as the starts (or so I constantly tell my husband)!
Pushing It Up! — Will only speed up your fuel consumption. According to the Department of Energy (DOA) it takes a lot of energy for your vehicle to push the air out of the way as you speed down the road. Driving the speed limit of 65 versus 75 can save as much as 15% on fuel consumption because of the energy needed for higher speeds.
Puhleeze Give Me Some Air — At speeds of 40 mph or greater, it costs more to leave the windows open (due to drag) than it does to run the air. In a place like Palmdale, CA where the summer temps reach 110 degrees that’s good news!
Pitch the Junk! — Take your golf clubs, soccer chairs, Salvation Army book donations and all the other JUNK out of your TRUNK. Otherwise, you’re paying more to haul it.
Pressure and Maintain – The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that one-in-four cars have under inflated tires by 8 pounds per square inch. By getting the right amount of air in your tires and taking a few minutes to change the air filter, you can increase your gas mileage by 3.3%! A tuned engine can save an average of 4% more and detected problems, like a bad oxygen sensor can help your mileage by 40%!
Pool it — Car pool whenever possible, and let everyone pitch in with their dough!
• Premium, Schmium — According to AAA, only 5% of vehicles in the US require the premium gas–it does not help your vehicle for you to pay more for it. Buy the regular stuff and have no worries.
Peak no More! – Plan trips, if possible, during off peak times to avoid traffic jams.
Pay up! — Make teens pay for gas when they aren’t driving for sanctioned raod time (such as school, work, running your errands, etc). It’s amazing how much less miles they will put on the car!

Happy Driving, Joshua!

Love Mama,
aka America’s Family Financial Expert (R)

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