Even when you’re reasonably happy with the gas mileage your vehicle is getting, you might be concerned about fuel efficiency. After all, the better the fuel economy, the more money in you save for the things in life that make you happy, like vacation! Even with hybrid vehicles, you can increase gas mileage by changing a few of your driving habits.
Not only is tailgating dangerous, but it reduces fuel efficiency. Every time you have to hit the brakes and then speed up again, you’re using gas that you didn’t need to use. You can help to reduce traffic jams by keeping your distance from vehicles in front of you. The closer you are to the vehicle directly ahead of you, the sooner you have to hit the brakes if that person slows down. Leaving a space allows you to slowdown by just taking your foot off the gas, which means the engine doesn’t have to work as hard to get back to your original cruising speed. It also allows people to merge into your lane without you having to hit the brakes to let them in and keeps the flow of traffic smooth.
You use more gas when you have to take off from a slower speed or a dead stop. The more you slow down, the slower the engine turns and you’ll have to use more power to get it back up to speed. And more power means more gas. Instead of rushing up to a light or a line of cars, start slowing down gently when you still have some road to cover. If you happen to hit that light just right, you could take off from 30 mph instead of 0 or even 20 mph and this means you use less power and less gas to get going again.
The faster you go, the more gas you’ll use. If you’re out of your engine’s power curve, you’ll really notice that your vehicle is going through gas. The power curve isn’t something everyone is familiar with, but it is advertised when you buy a new vehicle. The specifications will tell you how much horsepower and torque your vehicle makes and at what RPM. If you stay within the power curve while you are cruising, you’ll get better gas mileage.
Before you change your driving habits, take note of how much fuel you use. Then, make some subtle changes when you drive and you’ll notice an increase in fuel efficiency. As a bonus, you’ll save wear and tear on certain car parts, too.