Better Gas Mileage

gaspump2Dear Tracy,
I know everyone is complaining about gas prices, but the expense is really killing my budget! Is there anything I can do to improve the gas mileage on my car and make that expensive gas go a little further? I have heard that you can get fuel additives that will improve gas mileage. Do these work?
Jenny A.

Dear Jenny,
It is true, for most of us it is really hard to cope with the financial strain of these rising gas prices. It is understandable that you’d like to do something to improve your gas mileage, but think twice about spending even more of your hard-earned money on fuel additives.

The vehicle engines of today are pretty amazing.  Through decades of research, vehicle engineers better understand engines and the nature of the demands placed on them. Engines are now developed to provide optimal performance under the most demanding conditions. Engines are put through rigorous testing, and are designed to be reliable with proper maintenance. While some fuel additives may provide some advantages, your engine was designed to provide peak performance all on its own. If you want to try an additive, be sure to check with your mechanic before you pick up a bottle of something from your local auto parts store. Your mechanic will know the different types of additives and the needs of your particular vehicle.

The easiest way to improve gas mileage is with smart driving habits and proper maintenance. Here are some simple tips that should help you make the gas budget go a little further:

Proper Tire Inflation – routinely check your tire pressure and keep the tires inflated to the manufacturer’s recommended pressure.

Regular Oil Changes – follow your manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule and use the recommended grade of motor oil for optimal performance.

Regularly Check Tire Tread – don’t forget that worn out tires are not only dangerous, they will cause your vehicle to operate less efficiently.

Use Cruise Control  on the Highway – maintaining a consistent and safe speed has all kinds of obvious benefits and will also provides better gas mileage.

Combine Trips – try to combine and plan your trips when you can; you may be surprised to discover how much you can save on gas.