(703) 352-7770 |  3215 Old Pickett Road, Fairfax, VA 22031  |  Mon–Fri: 8:00am–6:00pm (After Hours Key Dropoff Available)

Learn How To Get Better Gas Mileage With These 7 Simple Tips

July 9, 2020

Learn How To Get Better Gas Mileage With These 7 Simple Tips | ABS Unlimited in Fairfax, VA.

During these unprecedented times we are all looking for ways to save money. When it comes to driving, there are simple things you can do to get better gas mileage and subsequently save money. 

Learn How To Get Better Gas Mileage With These 7 Tips

1) Don’t drive aggressively – FuelEconomy.gov states that speeding and rapid acceleration or braking can lower your gas mileage by roughly 15% to 30% at highway speeds and 10% to 40% in stop-and-go traffic.

2) Coast drive, when possible – Congested traffic is a way of life in Fairfax, VA but try to avoid accelerating from zero to 30 and then back to zero. Instead, try to maintain a steady speed and avoid unnecessary braking. 

a person holding the steering wheel

3) Plan & combine your trips – Combining errands into one trip saves you time and money. Your fuel economy is worse when your engine is cold than when it is warmed up. So, several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as a longer, multipurpose trip covering the same distance.

4) Get rid of excess weight – Avoid keeping unnecessary items in your vehicle, especially heavy ones. An extra 100 pounds in your vehicle could reduce your MPG by about 1%. (Source 1) Also, if you go away for the weekend and use a cargo carrier, be sure to remove it when you get home. Hauling cargo on your roof increases aerodynamic drag (wind resistance) and lowers fuel economy.

an image of a car

5) Avoid excessive idling – Idling can use a quarter to a half gallon of gas per hour, depending on your vehicle’s engine size and air conditioner use. It’s best to turn off your engine when your vehicle is parked.

an image showing low fuel mileage

6) Stay cool but don’t excessively use your A/C – Running your car’s air conditioning is the main contributor to reduced fuel economy in hot weather. Consider driving with the windows down for a short time before turning on the A/C. Letting hot air out of the car first will put less demand on the A/C and help your vehicle cool faster.

7) Keep your car maintained – To keep your vehicle performing its best it’s always important to follow your vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule. The following vehicle maintenance will help improve gas mileage:

  • Checking your tire pressure once a month – You can improve your gas mileage by 0.6% on average – and up to 3% in some cases – by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure. (Source 2)
  • Use your vehicle’s recommended grade of motor oil – You can improve your gas mileage by 1% – 2% by using the manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil. For example, using 10W-30 motor oil in an engine designed to use 5W-30 can lower your gas mileage by 1%–2%. Using 5W-30 in an engine designed for 5W-20 can lower your gas mileage by 1%–1.5%. (Source 3)
  • Replace your air filter – Replacing your air filter within the recommended vehicle manufacturer interval will improve the overall engine efficiency by improving its ability to draw air for mixing with fuel.

ABS Unlimited hopes you find these 7 tips on how to get better gas mileage helpful. Of course, if you have a need for expert, reliable and affordable auto maintenance or repair in the Fairfax, VA area, please keep our family owned business in mind. 

Safe travels!