Friday, March 25, 2011

A Controversial Approach - Slow Down and Save Gas

Gas prices have every driver feeling the pressure these days.  With gas prices continuing to soar upwards, no driver wants to have to visit the pump any more than they absolutely have to.  That is why it is important to find easy ways that you can increase your fuel efficiency when driving, so you can save a little bit of gas in the process.  After all, every little bit helps, right?

Automobile speedometer, measuring speed in mil...Image via WikipediaThe best ways to save on fuel consumption when you drive are also quite often among the cheapest methods, as well.  For instance, did you know that you can save on gas expenses simply by making a few small changes to your driving style?  If this sounds too good to be true, do not worry!  It is quite possible to increase your fuel efficiency quite dramatically, with even a few subtle changes to the way that you drive.  Read on to find out just how you can accomplish these changes.

First of all, you should know that driving in excess of 55 miles per hour really eats up a lot of gas.  If you compare your mileage when you are driving 55 miles per hour to your mileage when you are driving 75 miles per hour, you will see a drastic difference.  Many experts have speculated that you use about 20 to 25 percent more fuel when you are driving 75 miles per hour, compared to what you would use if you drove at 55 miles per hour.  That is why it is very important to consider going a little bit slower when you are driving on the highway or interstate road.

Although some may see this as a sticking point, since it may seem like a bit of a chore to have to putt along at 55 miles per hour when everyone else is going 65 miles per hour (or even faster), remember that you will still get to where you are going, and in the process you will save some money.  If you are only going a short way, such as a one hour trip, you will only spend about ten extra minutes on the road.  At that point, you have to decide for yourself whether getting to your destination a few minutes faster is worth paying several extra dollars in fuel expenses to get there.  If your trip is shorter, such as a thirty mile trip, going ten miles per hour slower will only cost you five minutes of driving time!  Surely, you can afford an extra five minutes spent in the car?

sign photoImage via WikipediaIt is important to note that you do not necessarily have to drive 55 miles per hour to get the benefits of increased fuel efficiency.  Even if you slow down from, say, 65 miles per hour to 60 miles per hour, you will still save a bit of gas.  You just will not save as much as you would have, if you had gone down to 55 miles per hour.  However, any gas savings are better than no gas savings, so even if you can slow down just a little bit, you will be helping yourself out the next time you have to go to the gas station! 

It is also important to remember that going slightly over 55 miles per hour does not cost you as much fuel efficiency as an increase in speed when you are already going quite fast.  In other words, five extra miles per hour when you are already going 70 miles per hour will cause a more marked decrease in fuel efficiency than the difference experienced when you go five extra miles per hour over 55 miles per hour.

You won’t only enjoy increased fuel efficiency by driving slower.  You will also avoid getting costly traffic tickets, which can often cost hundreds of dollars.  Plus, you will be a safer driver, and more likely to escape a potentially deadly crash.  If you want to save money at the pump, you should seriously consider slowing down your speed.
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