Driving may be the most convenient way to get around, but the rising costs of owning and maintaining a vehicle make it a luxury that’s difficult to afford. If you use your car to commute to work on a daily basis, the costs of gas and maintenance services can almost make it feel like you’re working to drive rather than driving to work.
However, there are some tricks you can do to help cut down on your fuel and maintenance costs. These 8 driving hacks will save you money so you can put the joy back into joyride.
1. Plan your route before you go. You probably have a destination or two in mind before you put your car in drive. However, many people don’t take the most efficient route possible. There are an endless amount of mapping tools available that can guarantee you’re getting to where you need to as fast as possible.
2. Eliminate wind resistance. Having a luggage rack on your roof or even keeping your windows down can cause wind resistance while driving. The more aerodynamic your vehicle is, the more fuel you’ll save in the long run.
3. Plan where you fill up. Don’t wait until you’re out of gas to fill up or you’ll end up paying more out of convenience. Gas stations near the highway are notorious for being pricier. Plan ahead and take advantage of the many smartphone apps that show you the cheapest gas prices around you.
4. Declutter your car. Some of us have a habit of driving around with a lot of unnecessary weight. However, it’s best to keep only the necessities in your vehicle because the heavier it is, the more fuel it will end up consuming.
5. Monitor your braking. Excessive braking can waste gas and cause your brake pads to wear out. This can be avoided by monitoring how you brake. Maintaining a safe distance between you and the car ahead of you will eliminate the need to slam on the brakes, which will improve the efficiency of your car.
6. Use cruise control. When you’re driving on the highway, cruise control doesn’t just provide your foot a break, it also can provide additional gas savings. Accelerating regularly will cause you to use much more fuel than necessary.
7. Monitor your tire pressure. Under-inflated tires can cause your fuel consumption to increase. It’s important to regularly check your tire pressure as properly inflated tires help reduce friction and offer better gas mileage.
8. Turn off air conditioning. In the sun months, blasting the AC might seem necessary, but fuel consumption increases 15% on average when the air conditioner is on. The AC uses energy supplied from the engine, which uses the fuel in your gas tank.