How to Ease Your Gasoline Pain: A Few Tips

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Today’s guest post comes to us from Tara Miller, who regularly writes for Psychology Degree. Enjoy!

How to Ease Your Gasoline Pain: A Few Tips

With the recent trouble we have seen in the Middle East, oil prices have dramatically risen in the past few months, causing gas prices all over the world to reach new highs. As the summer comes around, we can expect those prices to rise as they usually do. 

So, if we’re trying to be frugal with our money and expenses, then we should also strive to be frugal in how we consume gasoline in our cars. I’ve tried to list a few cost-saving ideas for those of us who want to ease our pain at the pump.

It’s Important To Do Regular Maintenance

First of all, think about the state of your car: is it in relatively good shape? If not, then that could be one of the factors behind your higher gasoline consumption and spending. Think about how important it is for an athlete to stay in shape if he or she wants to be competitive, and then you should try to apply that to your own car. 

If its air filters are clean, if it has new oil, and if its tires are inflated properly, then the car can operate more efficiently and use less gasoline doing so. Always follow the maintenance schedule recommended in your vehicle’s user manual, and be sure to check the tires for proper inflation every few days.

Know The Traffic Situation

Being aware of the traffic patterns and backups along the routes you mostly travel is especially important as well because that knowledge can help you minimize the amount of time you spend on the road burning gasoline. 

Use a GPS device or your smart phone to get live traffic updates when you drive around as well, as this will help you adjust your route when you do in fact hit bad traffic. Combining your knowledge of the area and your real-time information regarding the traffic situation will help you skirt past the backups while everyone else wastes gas as they wait to move.

Plan Your Errands

When you do have to drive around, either to and from work or to run errands, you should take some extra time to plan out your route and your tasks. Creating this kind of plan will ensure that you make the most of your gasoline and your driving time. For example, if you have errands to do, try to do them to and from work, so that way you don’t have to take extra trips. Likewise, use a mapping application to figure out the shortest and least congested routes between each location you have to visit.

Try Alternate Forms of Transportation

This is perhaps the toughest tip, as it might require you to change a great habit of your life, but it might be worth it in the end. If you’re able to, try to take alternate forms of transportation when you can. This means you could take the bus to and from work, or you could use the subway system to get around the city. Or even just using these forms once or twice a week could greatly reduce your fuel consumption and help you save money.

How about you all? How have the higher gasoline prices affected you so far? What techniques do you use to lower your spending on gas? 

Share your experiences by commenting below!

Jacob’s Thoughts – Listed below are my random thoughts as I was reading this article.

  • @ The Importance of Regular Maintenance – I am definitely in agreement that regular maintenance is important in order to keep your car running well and in a fuel efficient manner.
    • However, one thing that I do not know how to handle is the following – when I take in my car for the regular “every-3000 miles” service, they mechanics always come up with a laundry list of problems that could be potentially fixed. If I got them all fixed, I would probably spend close to $2000 each time I brought the car in.
    • How do you discern between what really needs to be fixed, and what doesn’t?

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  1. A comment to your comment Jacob. I don't think you really need to go in for the 3,000 miles. If it's just for an oil change, you could probably stretch it to 5,000 and if you have synthetic oil, more than 10,000 miles. As for the mechanics, I would ask your friends, neighbors, coworkers, etc for recommendations for mechanics and autoshops that they trust. Not only will you get a highly recommended mechanic, maybe you can get a discount!

  2. Jacob, This is a huge problem and one that will only get worse. One tip I would suggest is to be “mindful,” and think before you rush out. Ask yourself if you must tke your car right now, or is there another mode of transportation or can you postpone the trip altogether?

    • That's a good tip. Thanks Barb! One thing that is tough too for me is that it is very convenient to find an auto shop close to my condo so I can walk to and from dropping off and picking up my car!

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