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  1. #1

    Default Top 10 ways to cut fuel costs

    Are gas prices killing you when you drive your truck or suv? Are you feeling the pinch and thinking of selling and moving into new Hybrid (such as the Chevy Tahoe Hybrid) or a sub-compact car ... or even a scooter?

    Financially, you've already spent money on your vehicle (purchase price and depreciation), selling at a low-point in the market might not make the most sense financially as it may take several years to make back the money you've already lost. Perhaps it's time to look at getting the most of of your current ride and discovering if they're a way to avoid the pain at the pump.


    Let's start a discussion where everyone can pitch in ideas and let's come up with a top 10 ways to cut fuel costs. I'll start it off with the first five and let's get your comments for what works.
    1. Keep your vehicle well maintained.
      Good tire pressure is a key. Do all the proper maintenance including filters and oil changes.

    2. Cut back your speed 10%. (or more)
      Are you used to driving 80? Try driving between 70 and 75 and you'll save fuel.
      Used to driving 70? Knock it down to 60 to 65 and you'll see savings at the pump.

    3. Drive at a steady speed.
      Watch out for those jack-rabbit starts off the line and let your foot off the pedal when you're coming up on a stop.

    4. Try to avoid rush-hour traffic.
      This is hard in a lot of the country, but NOTHING costs more fuel than 25 MPH stop-and-go rush hour traffic. Even the most fuel efficient car is going to get 16 MPG in heavy freeway traffic. Forget what you'll get in a full size truck. Go to work early or carpool with a friend to get into the HOV lane.

    5. Factor fuel into trips
      A friend had a $5 pet turtle die after getting home from the pet store. It would use 2 gallon of gas to get back to the store for a refund, that's about $8 at current fuel costs. They saved money by not bothering to get a refund.

    Steve
    10 Chevy Traverse LT AWD
    02 Chevy Trailblazer LS (110K+ miles - loaded except for 4WD - WRECKED!)
    99 Chevy Cavalier LS (105K+ miles - commuter car)
    78 Chevy Suburban Silverado (454, 3/4 ton)
    62 GMC 3/4 ton Pickup (350 police interceptor)

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  2. #2

    Default

    Think you covered the basics!

    * Reduce excess weight in the vehicle.
    * Car pool.
    * Drive less & plan your trips.
    * Ditch those heavy oversized wheels.
    * Certain mods such as mileage tunes, intake, and free flowing exhaust may help. (However, the minor gains may or may not out weigh the costs of those mods.)
    * Cut back your speed 20%.
    * Move to Venezuela (ie. $.012/gal).
    * Don't buy gas guzzling trucks/suv.
    * Buy a civic.


    2009 GMC Sierra Denali AWD

  3. #3

    Default

    Im pretty sure if you keep your windows closed at speeds above 40mph+ youll save a little more gas because of aerodynamics

  4. #4

    Default

    Use the brakes as little as possible. It'll require you to think ahead and guage distances and application of throttle...
    1999 Chevy Suburban 4x4 350cid. 3.73 stock locking diff
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    Soon:
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  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 99Sub4x4 View Post
    Use the brakes as little as possible. It'll require you to think ahead and guage distances and application of throttle...
    I've incorporated this into my driving. I used to haul ass, no matter where I was or where I was going, including right up to that red light. Now, if you see the light you are approaching is red or going to be red, cut your speed immediately and slow roll right up to it. A lot of times, this will allow you to resume when the light turns green without ever even fully stopping. This saves gas too, less energy to get your truck moving again if its not completely stopped. Its made a difference for me.

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by omegafiler View Post
    * Buy a civic.

    Oh God no. Gas is expensive but not that much!!! Civic drivers spend more money on LED's and spoilers than gas anyhow

    2006 Chevy Silverado 1500 2WD EXT Cab
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  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by no0b123 View Post
    Oh God no. Gas is expensive but not that much!!! Civic drivers spend more money on LED's and spoilers than gas anyhow
    Well, don't forget the stickers. But they have new ones now that increase MPG instead of HP.

    Once I pay off this truck, I'll probably pickup a more fuel efficient vehicle just because I had always planned on buying a 2nd vehicle as a backup and/or project car. And it definately won't be a Civic! But those used Impala's can be acquired for a great price and they can get some descent MPG as well. And it's a GM.

    2009 GMC Sierra Denali AWD

  8. #8
    Jr. Apprentice garretthes's Avatar
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    I read somewhere that slowing the gas nozzle to the low setting would not save gas but give a more accurate reading. Skeptical, I gave it a try. To my extreme surprise it saved me $$$. Where my accord used to take 13.5 to 14 gallons when on "E", at the slow fill speed the nozzle clicks off around 11.3 to 12 gallons. I'm saving around $5 per fill up.
    I know this sounds confusing but basically, use the slow speed when filling up and you will end up with less gas to pay for.

  9. #9
    Jr. Apprentice garretthes's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fatmancam92 View Post
    Im pretty sure if you keep your windows closed at speeds above 40mph+ youll save a little more gas because of aerodynamics
    I have heard this but common sense tells me it's way more complicated. A few thoughts...

    I think it would depend largely on the shape of the vehicle and how much your compressor pulls from the engine. Example, a 4 cyl engine is more adversely affected by the compressor than an 8 cyl. Therefore, the power drain on the 4 cyl would be larger than the 8 which has more torque and mass.
    But I'm no physicist.....
    I know I can feel the engine lurch and performance suffers on my accord but I can't feel a thing when I hit the air on our Caddy.
    As far as the windows causing drag, remember the myth that lowering the tailgate on a truck would increase mileage? On the Myth Busters show they proved this was false (one of the few worth while episodes). I'm just saying, aerodynamics can be very complicated. The 1st 3rd generation corvette that was designed liked to fly (lift) at speeds over 110. Looking at it you would think it would cause down force.
    Last edited by garretthes; 07-23-2008 at 05:26 PM.

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by garretthes View Post
    I read somewhere that slowing the gas nozzle to the low setting would not save gas but give a more accurate reading. Skeptical, I gave it a try. To my extreme surprise it saved me $$$. Where my accord used to take 13.5 to 14 gallons when on "E", at the slow fill speed the nozzle clicks off around 11.3 to 12 gallons. I'm saving around $5 per fill up.
    I know this sounds confusing but basically, use the slow speed when filling up and you will end up with less gas to pay for.
    I've heard quite a few "tricks" to saving money at the pump, but this is a new one. I'll have to try it out. It will just take some patience at the gas station
    Matt
    Hallsville, TX

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