■ If you own more than one car — especially if one
of your vehicles is a less fuel-efficient vehicle such as
a pickup truck, sport utility vehicle or van — use the
more energy-conserving vehicle as often as possible.
■ Consolidate trips and errands to cut down on
driving time and miles traveled.
■ Find one location where you can take care of banking,
grocery shopping and other errands. Comparisonshop
by phone, online or through newspaper ads.
■ Slow down. The faster a vehicle travels, the more
fuel it burns.
■ Avoid quick starts and sudden stops. This wastes
fuel, is harder on vehicle components and increases
the odds of a traffic crash.
■ Lighten the load. Don’t haul extra weight in the
passenger compartment, trunk or cargo area of
your vehicle. A heavier vehicle uses more gasoline.
■ Keep your eyes open for low fuel prices, but
don’t waste gas driving to a distant filling station
to save a few cents.
■ Stick to a routine maintenance schedule. Keeping
tires inflated, moving components properly
lubricated and ignition and emission systems
operating properly will help ensure maximum
fuel efficiency and extend the life of your vehicle.
Think it Through Your driving style can have a
significant impact on the amount of fuel you use.
Remember the following:
■ Know the correct starting procedure for your
car. Don’t race a cold engine to warm it up or
allow it to idle for an extended time. Avoid rapid
acceleration until the engine temperature is in
the normal range. The engine will warm up faster
under a light load, and emissions equipment will
begin to function properly sooner.
■ Maintain steady speeds for the best fuel economy.
A car uses extra fuel when it accelerates.
■ Minimize the need to brake by anticipating
traffic conditions. Be alert for slowdowns and
red lights ahead of you, and decelerate by coasting
■ Travel at moderate speeds on the open road.
Higher speeds require more fuel to overcome air
resistance. Remember, however, speeds slower
than the flow of traffic can create a traffic hazard.
■ Use the air conditioner conservatively. Most air
conditioners have an “economy” or “recirculation”
setting that reduces the amount of hot outside air
that must be chilled. Both settings can reduce the
air-conditioning load — and save gas.