If rising gas prices are breaking your budget, you’re not alone. Minnesota drivers are frustrated with rising gas prices, and are searching for answers on how to keep their budget intact while also getting more efficient when it comes to driving. While we can’t control the price we pay at the pump, we can take small steps that make a big difference when it comes to making our cars more fuel efficient. If you’ve been looking for some ways to make your last fill up last longer so you can drive farther, then keep reading for our best fuel saving tips.

Drive the speed limit to save on Fuel

If you like to get there faster, you may be surprised to know that slowing down helps your car become more fuel efficient. Did you know that driving at 80 MPH can use up to 25% more fuel than driving 70 MPH? For a quick money and fuel saving tip, just slow it down and enjoy the ride.

Fill up with the best fuel for your vehicle

If you’ve been assuming that the higher octane gas will make your car more fuel efficient, you may want to think again. Most experts would tell you that more expensive gas is not always more efficient. Instead, stick to the octane your car requires according to your manufacturer. If your car needs 87 octane, filling it with 89 or 91 octane won’t increase your fuel efficiency. This will simply cost more without any added benefit. Stick to what you need and keep your car running efficiently all year long.

Keep your tank ¼ full

This seems counter-intuitive, but letting your tank get below ¼ full leads to your fuel pump needing to work harder, and will decrease your fuel efficiency in the long run. Plan on keeping your tank at least ¼ full for greater efficiency while you drive.

Inspect your tires for better fuel efficiency

Your tires are not just about safety, and a smooth ride. Improperly inflated tires will decrease your fuel efficiency by 3%. While it may not seem like much, this can add up over time. We recommend checking your tire pressure every month to ensure fuel efficiency.

Check your front end alignment

If you’ve hit a big pothole or bump while driving around this spring, it’s a good idea to have your alignment checked. Poor front end alignment can decrease your gas mileage by 10%. Signs you may have poor front end alignment include pulling to one side while driving, a little extra bounce when you hit a bump, or even shaking when driving at high speeds. If you notice any of these signs, it’s time to have your alignment checked by your mechanic.

Get smart about using your AC

Using your AC can weigh on your engine and decrease your fuel efficiency. This is especially true with city driving when there are a lot of stops and starts. To increase fuel efficiency, plan on opening those windows and enjoying some fresh air. On the other hand, open windows are an issue for highway driving. This can reduce your fuel efficiency by 10%. We recommend keeping these things in mind when using your AC this summer.

Lighten your load to save on Fuel

A fun fact about fuel efficiency is that the heavier your car is, the harder it will need to work. If you use your trunk or backend for storage, you may be surprised to find out that for every 100 lbs you are storing in your trunk, your fuel consumption will increase by 1-2%. Simply doing a little spring cleaning of your trunk can go a long way.

Schedule regular maintenance checks

Your car will burn up to 30% more fuel if proper maintenance is not performed. Your regular maintenance check will include having most things checked by a professional mechanic including your tire pressure, front end alignment, changing your air filter, and any other issues causing your car to burn more than it needs to.

If you’re ready to get started on these best saving tips, but don’t know where to start – we can help. Our team is ready to perform your routine maintenance and check several items off this list. Simply give us a call and we’ll get you on the road to saving money at the pump in no time.