The skyrocketing price of gas and oil doesn’t seem to be slowing down – AT ALL. The price of oil passed $110 a barrel yesterday. Ugh, just as the peak driving season kicks into gear. Soon the price jump will move into grocery and product costs as well, because you know they don’t ship that “Made in China” crap for free. What’s a poor homeboy or homegirl to do? Well . . . . conserve where you can – that’s about it.
So some of these suggestions you’ve heard before, maybe all of them, but given the recent record breaking prices, they deserve repeating. Hear it enough times and it might sink in. Whereas before keeping proper tire inflation may have meant, “cool, I saved a few dimes” it now means “shit, I just saved enough to buy lunch.” So, shall we?
Number TEN - screw the air conditioner, all that does is suck up precious SUV juice. If you’re going less than 45mph you’re better off rolling the windows down, but beyond that the incoming air just hits your rear window and makes your ride work harder. At that point you’re better off with the A/C, but it’s still best to just suck it up and endure the heat. When summer comes just drive with your shirt off (exept you ladies, you’ll cause accidents if you do this).
Number NINE - maintain proper tire inflation, already mentioned it, so moving on . . . actually, make sure the car is properly aligned, too. And while you’re at it, make sure the engine is properly tuned. Make sure the spark plugs are good, the wires, air filter, etc. It all adds up.
Number EIGHT - ditch the extra weight. No, I’m not talking about Aunt Bertha, I’m talking about the 80lbs of SHTF gear in your trunk. Shit HAS hit the fan, folks, at least in gas price world. Examine what you really need to carry day in and day out and ditch the rest.
Number SEVEN - use the manufacturer’s specified octane level. Anything more is a waste of money. Here’s another, perhaps less known, tip: fill up in the morning. That’s right, cooler gas is more dense, meaning you get more when it’s cold outside.
Number SIX - go on a cruise . . or use cruise control and make pretend you’re on a cruise. While you’re at it, use overdrive if you have it.
Number FIVE - don’t idle – what are you rich!? Don’t start the car until you’re buckled in and ready to roll. That’s precious juice you’re burning up as you sit in your rumbling ride. Do you know how long it takes for fossil fuels to form? MILLIONS of years!
Wait, you ARE rich? Huh, well send me some cash-o-la through the donate button, because I’m not.
Number FOUR - combine trips. Think ahead, plan a little. Chances are you’re good at both if you’re a survival ninja, but if you’re not doing it now for the use of your ride, it’s time to start.
Number THREE - don’t drive like the Golden Horde is on your ass. Don’t over accelerate, it wastes gas. Don’t tail gate, it leads to braking. Obey speed limits, because once you move above 55mph, your fuel economy plummets.
And the Number ONE BEST way to conserve gas - stay home! Or at least leave your ride at home and walk, bike, or carpool – assuming you can. Is there public transportation available? Will your employer allow you to work from home? These suggestions kind of go without saying, but you just gotta do it if you can.
- Ranger Man
BTW: Remember this poster? No, me neither. It was before my time.