Maximize Fuel Efficiency on Your Thanksgiving Road Trip
With Thanksgiving this week, many of us are getting ready to hunker down and feast. But some of us need to do a bit of traveling to get the family together, and that’s alright. Some may travel by plane, but for those that love the road, it’s just you and the car for a couple of hours. Here’s a few ways you can save some gas on the way.
Cruise control isn’t just great for setting your vehicle to a certain speed. It has several benefits, one of which is staying under the speed limit so you don’t get a speeding ticket around the holidays, and the other is saving gas. The average vehicle burns a little extra gas when driving over 60 mph. Eventually it adds up, but if set at 55 or so, much more gas will be left in the tank for the drive back.
Lighten the Load
So you drive a minivan because you car pool a lot, or maybe a truck for the construction site. It’s your vehicle, the same one that gets you where you need to go every day. However, it doesn’t need to be used for the same things everyday. If it’s just you and the kids in the van, there is no need to also haul sporting equipment and more luggage than you need. If that truck bed is filled with a large payload that can wait, get rid of it for the drive. Your vehicle will thank you for the reduced weight.
Check Out Your Instrument Cluster
Most cars nowadays come with instrument clusters and trip computers. These are there to help keep an eye on vehicle maintenance, performance, and fuel economy. If you haven’t done so before, take a joy ride around the city to see how many miles per gallon you average at different speeds. Then when you hit the road for Thanksgiving, you have an idea of how many miles per gallon you’ll get depending on how fast you travel.
Get Maintenance Done
If there is any type of car maintenance you’ve been putting off, say an oil change? It’s best to get it done before taking a long drive. Taking care of it now will be a lot better than getting stuck on the road with a broken down engine. Also, before hitting the highway, stop by a car maintenance center and ask for air in your tires. Most will be happy to oblige. Air is free after all.
Always Carry Cash
A little trick you may find yourself in. Some gas stations advertise a price per gallon (and sometimes that price is really good), but that price is only for people paying in cash. If you are paying with a credit card, the cost per gallon might be an additional 5-10 cents. That can be a real let down if plastic is all you have.
These tips will surely help you save money and gas on the road trip to the family feast. Be safe out there, and Happy Thanksgiving.