Testing some gas saving myths


If you’ve stayed local for Spring Break this year, then you know gas prices challenge the budget. On a normal day without long distance driving, you can feel stressed by fuel (in)efficiency. If you’re considering make a change toward something more fuel efficient but are worried that what you’ve heard doesn’t live up to the hype, check this out:

Is the fuel efficient car really efficient?

Getting 35 miles to a gallon sounds really good, but if the savings don’t add up to the increased car payment, you are hardly ahead. The answer will be different for everyone. If you go to fueleconomy.gov they will do the math for you.

Are two wheels better than four?

Oh yes, but it’s not practical or possible for most people. Riding a motocycle, scooter or bicycle to work or just to do errands can create big savings, savings large enough to keep your car and pay for the new two-wheeler. Ask yourself some questions before making the switch:
- Do you feel confident about your biking skills, especially in traffic and at four-way stops?
- Do you want the big, impressive motorcycle? Because those are less fuel efficient and cost a lot more to get into.
- How is your weather?
- Do you wear skirts and heels? Are you willing to give them up?

Is turning on the air a big energy waster?

No! Counter intuitive, right? Using air conditioning makes no impact on fuel efficiency. In fact, rolling down the windows creates a drag and holds the car back requiring more gas to move ahead – unless you are moving slowly through stop-start traffic, then there could be a miniscule amount of savings to be had by keeping the a/c off and rolling down the window.

Does combining errands really save gas?

Yes, but the planning can get tedious. The best route may not be the shortest to get all those errands done. Think about in town traffic and avoiding congesting intersections that create a lot of stop-start. Back roads could be faster.

Does carpooling to work really make a difference?

Yes – you give up a little on the convenience front and you won’t have the ability to move freely during the day or leave early given the opportunity. The savings though can be significant – cutting your budget by at least 50% if you carpool daily.

Source: LifeScript


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